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The Golf R for the Future

As we've driven every sporty type of the new Golf 8, we can finally give you our review of the best Golf of them all, the Golf R. The R has always been the pinnacle of the Golf; 4WD, a lot of power and an all-around perfect package, at least we think. Let's talk you through it.

Like all the other Golf Variants, the R is powered by the 2.0l TSI with 320 Horsepower and 420Nm of Torque. A lot of people think that it might be producing more because of the insane 0 - 100km/h time, but we think that they just engineered the R in a way to make the most of its available power. The 0 - 100km/h sprint takes (according to VW) 4,7s but some have tested it (0-60mph) in under 4 seconds! This car isn't made to compete with any other hot hatches, it's particularly focussed on the Mercedes-AMG A45S, the only hot-hatch that can outperform the Golf R in terms of acceleration. We haven't driven any A45 yet, so we can't really compare them. The 4WD system is variable and the Golf R even has a drift mode. It's debatable if it really works, but you can get the tail out if you really smash the throttle on exit. The Performance-Pack that was fitted to our car gives you the drift mode, an Akrapovic Exhaust, and a top speed of 277km/h. Imagine passing propper sportscars on the Autobahn going 270km/h+ IN A GOLF! The numbers are just insane and they all add up to a fantastic driving experience.

We reckon it's the best driving experience in these "new era" cars. Since everything is getting safer and exhausts are getting quieter, the Golf R has all these new regulations fitted to it, but it still delivers. One good example is traction control. Even if it says that it's off, the traction control will interfere if you get it badly wrong, but with the addition of drift-mode, you can safely have some propper sideways fun in a corner. But if you get it badly wrong, it will still help. That's a good and accessible way for people to enjoy the potential of the car, without killing themselves. One other cool thing about the R is the launch control, it's so easy. You just turn the traction control into a mid-sport setting, and you're good. It'll launch in any mode, Eco, Comfort, and Race. The acceleration will press you into your seat but there is no tire slip or any sketchy sideways action. It just launches itself in a straight line as fast as possible. We also enjoy the Akrapovic Exhaust. On throttle, it sounds like a vacuum cleaner but when you lift off you get some insane crackles that really shouldn't be legal in any era of motorcars.

The driving experience of today's cars has been restricted but the Golf R makes the best of it. You'll be able to corner with speeds that you can't imagine due to the front differential and torque vectoring at the rear axle. You also get a rear spoiler that maybe helps at higher speeds, but the Golf R is planted, except in drift mode of course. VW has even developed a "special-mode" that is intended for use on the bumpy Nürburgring.

While the R is the best Golf we've ever driven, it's still a Golf. So if you're sick of your 4000CHF exhaust you can put it into eco and it'll drive like a normal Golf. You'll even get good fuel economy. That's the advantage of downsizing. The need for bigger engines is becoming obsolete because these small engines are getting so powerful and they're very efficient. Also with gas prices always getting more expensive, the demand for gas-guzzlers is decreasing. That's why the Golf R is the perfect car for the future. It won't get more exciting than this, it'll just get more boring.


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