Volkswagen has confirmed pricing for the new Golf GTI Clubsport Edition 40. Costing from £30,875, the Clubsport is a lighter and more focussed celebration of the Golf GTI.
It uses a turbocharged 2-litre four-cylinder engine which produces 261bhp, with an extra 25bhp available in overboost mode (available in 10sec bursts).
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Flat out, a DSG gearboxed Clubsport can accelerate from 0 to 62mph in 5.9sec – the six-speed manual taking a tenth longer – while top speed is limited to 155mph. This is a substantial one second faster than a normal DSG GTI (with 217bhp) and half a second faster than a Performance Pack GTI (with 227bhp).
Unsurprisingly, without the luxury of four-wheel-drive the Clubsport can’t challenge the 297bhp Golf R, which dispatches the same launch in just 4.9sec. And the recently-unveiled SEAT Leon Cupra 290 can manage it in 5.7sec, though its peak 286bhp isn’t limited to 10sec overboost bursts like the Clubsport.
The Clubsport therefore manages to elbow its way into this tightly contested Volkswagen Group hot hatch pile with unique performance characteristics – and the same can be said about its exterior.
To match its extra grunt the Clubsport gains aerodynamic features like a prominent rear wing and a quartet of guiding vanes on its front bumper, finished in gloss black. Volkswagen claims that these features were shaped in the wind tunnel and therefore do produce downforce.
The car also sits on new optional Bresica 19-inch alloy wheels – 18-inch wheels are standard fitment – and flaunts black Clubsport stripes along the sides (inspired by the original 1976 GTI’s side stripe), black door mirror covers and a black roof. The launch car’s Oryx White paintjob contrasts these features nicely, and VW says more colours will be available.
Inside, the Clubsport gets a pair of bucket-style seats, finished with honeycomb patterned centres and tartan details, an Alcantara-wrapped wheel, the traditional golf-ball gear knob and red stitching to contrast. Other features include a red line on the seat belts, black headlining and red-edged floor mats, while stainless steel doorsills complete the cabin’s look.
You might be thinking what’s the point of creating a model to fill such a tight gap between the Performance Pack Golf GTI and Golf R. Volkswagen tells evo that the Clubsport is unique not just because of its exterior and interior styling, but also because it’s lighter than the four-wheel drive R. Therefore its ability on track may appeal more to particular enthusiasts.
In fact a recent drive on in the Clubsport on track revealed it to be just that.