The R is making its public debut at the Frankfurt Motor Show next week. VW says it will go on sale in most markets late this year.
If it hits U.S. dealerships in 2015, it'll probably be called a 2016.
VW says the heart of the car is "a newly configured, 296- horsepower TSI engine," that's rated 280 lbs.-ft. of torque and should get 18% better fuel-economy. Those are German-market ratings, and the U.S. are expected to be a bit lower.
The current-generation U.S.-market Golf R is rated 256 hp, 243 pounds-feet of torque. Mileage ratings are 19 mpg in the city, 27 on the highway, 22 in combined city/highway driving. If VW's mpg forecast is right, the new R should have ratings of about 22/32/26 mpg.
A new version of VW's 4Motion all-wheel drive keeps the hefty amount of power from simply smoking the tires, as would be likely if it were front-drive only, as the basic Golf is. To distinguish the R from the Golf GTI, also a high-performance iteration of the Golf, the R has unique air intakes, different bumpers and side spats, four-pipe exhaust outlets.
The most-recent R -- discontinued during the 2013 model run; there is no 2014 -- had a starting price of $34,795 in the U.S. No word about U.S. pricing of the next-generation R
If VW keeps its promise, The Golf R should be the last model that puts the U.S. last on the launch list. Staggered launches are a source of aggravation for U.S. dealers and buyers, who don't like waiting for something on sale elsewhere. VW says it needs to finish a factory in Puebla, Mexico, in order to better synchronize U.S. launches with those elsewhere.
Once Puebla's done -- early next year, VW says -- production of Golf models for North and South America will be shifted there from Germany, making them available more-or-less simultaneously in all markets. Puebla will start production with the seventh-generation Golf, sometimes called G7, unveiled at the Paris Motor Show a year ago. The new R will be based on that new Golf.
Golf is VW's best-selling car worldwide,. but its sales in the U.S. are down more than 20% this year and are a fraction of VW's Jetta and Passat sales.
Volkswagen has decided to add a new model to its scorching 'R' range, and it's the most practical R car yet. The Golf Estate has been given the R treatment and our spy shots show it completely undisguised.
Expected to be launched at the Essen Motor Show in December, the hot estate is shown undergoing testing at the Nurburgring. Sources claim that the idea for a Golf R Estate has been thrown around for a while but Volkswagen has finally decided to put the high-performance load-lugger into mass production.
The standard Golf Estate is a fairly plain-looking affair but this one adds far more by way of visual aggression, with the deeper 'R' front bumper and side skirts. The quad exhausts look unusual on such a boxy estate, but hint at the immense performance on offer.
With the R Estate using the same four-wheel drive chassis and 2.0-litre turbocharged engine as the Golf R hatchback, it's unlikely that performance will suffer too much from the 100kg of extra weight that's likely to be present compared to the hatch.
Power is rated at 296bhp and there's a healthy 380Nm of torque, which means the family-friendly R model should have the measure of it's closest rival, the Ford Focus ST estate.
Expect acceleration to be down a little bit from the 0.62mph time of 5.1 seconds for the hatch (4.9 for the DSG), but the top speed should still reach the 155mph limiter.
Prices will probably add around Â£800 or so to the Â£30,000 pricetag of the standard Golf R hatch, which isn't a significant premium when you consider the extra practicality on offer.
The flourishing MSA British GT Championship, the UKâ€™s leading sportscar race series, has chosen a Volkswagen Racing-modified Golf 7 R as its Safety Car.
Leading a grid of over thirty GT3 and GT4 sports cars from marques such as Aston Martin, McLaren, Ferrari and Porsche, the Championship needed a car with the performance necessary to safely lead these supercars on track in any conditions; quickly, reliably and safely. With live television coverage at some events, it is vital that the Safety Car never, ever lets the Championship down.
Using the new Golf R in manual 6-speed form as our starting point, we have thrown the full catalogue of our VWR Performance Upgrades at the car, parts which are proven from our own racing programme. Alongside these upgrades, we are also taking the chance to fast-track our test and development process with a few of our final prototype parts.
â€œWe need every one of our VWR Performance Upgrades to be able to shine at high speed on track, time after time, under pressure to perform with total reliability,â€ explained Volkswagen Racing UK MD Sam Roach. â€ Usually, thatâ€™s in a race environment, so itâ€™s a great testament for our uprated Golf R to be chosen for such a high profile and prestigious task.â€
With the new R replacing a Nissan GTR, the Safety Car drivers were highly impressed by the ability that the modifications give the car.