Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR Confirmed for Late 2018
A new range-topping Golf GTI has been revealed to mark the end of the MK7 Golf’s production run.
The Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR (Touring Car Racing) is the last hurrah for this generation of GTI, but it’s really rather special. Far from just a humdrum styling kit, TCR specification nets you a series of desirable upgrades that raise the GTI’s level up a notch.
These include a modified version of the familiar 2.0 TSI engine, in this guise tuned to produce 286bhp in overboost mode at 5000rpm. When the overboost kicks in, the turbocharger takes a gulp of air and kicks out 2.1 bar of pressure, up from 1.9 bar.
The result is a perceptible performance increase over the standard GTI. Torque stands at 272 lb-ft, which is really as much as you want in a front-wheel-drive Golf.
Interestingly, the Golf GTI TCR also has an uprated intercooler. It’s beefier than the standard GTI’s and is said to improve thermal efficiency considerably.
The brakes are uprated too. Larger discs and callipers promise better-stopping power than ever, and the ride height’s been reduced by 20mm over the standard GTI, making it sit even lower than the Golf R. Suffice to say, it’s got a great stance.
Elsewhere, there are more goodies. The Golf GTI TCR comes as standard with the stunning (and loud) titanium Akrapovič exhaust system that up until now was only available optionally on the Golf R.
A mechanical limited-slip differential is included and optionally, you can raise the speed limit to 168mph, up from 155mph.
Perhaps the most noticeable thing about the GTI TCR is the styling upgrades.
You will immediately notice that titanium exhaust, but your eyes will be more drawn to the chunky, muscular rear diffuser and exclusive side skirts.
These features create a stance that is as suitable for car shows and meetups as it is country roads.
Exclusive 19-inch alloy wheels, an exclusive front bumper with functional outer ducts and a prominent splitter add to the appeal. It looks great, but then so do all used Volkswagen in Northern Ireland and especially those in GTI spec.
Step inside and the Golf GTI TCR stands out. The upholstery is Alcantara and cloth, with the middle of the seat design being exclusive to the TCR.
The door cards are also lined with Alcantara, and the gear lever glove is made from it. You know you’re in something special thanks to the steering wheel’s red marker at 12 o’clock, and the Active Info Display boasts red graphics to leave you in no doubt you are in a sporty model.
It might be a last hurrah for the current GTI, but if you are a sucker for special editions and rarities, you will find the TCR the most elusive of all. The TCR is set to go into production later this year with a very limited production window of a few months.
Factory orders will soon stop for all MK7 models so the MK8 can enter the pipeline. If you want the ultimate Volkswagen Golf GTI from this generation, the TCR is it.