2015 Volkswagen GTI
If ever there was a hot-hatch-segment-defining car, the VW GTI would most likely be it. And perhaps aside from the heavy and globule-like Mk4, each one has been coveted in its field. The 2015 Volkswagen GTI, the seventh generation of the German pocket rocket, will ratchet things up once more.
Debuting at next week’s Geneva Motor Show, the Mk7 version will be powered by a 4-cylinder turbocharged, direct-inject engine with 220 horsepower and 258 lb-ft of torque to the front wheels. A performance package will add 10 hp, larger brakes and a limited-slip diff, enhancing the GTI’s already impressive all-around performance. But the new GTI will also get improved fuel economy, boosted by 18%. With the optional six-speed dual-clutch transmission, that means around 36 MPG highway with both engines. Auto stop-start, a progressive steering system, an automatic climate control system, park assist, a touchscreen infotainment system and heated front seats all come standard — proving the GTI will be more than just sexy skin and a beefy powertrain. But for those who bank on superficiality, take note of the great tartan seats, red ambient lighting, rear diffuser, smoked LED taillights, red brake calipers and twin chrome exhaust. Heck, we don’t really need all of this, do we? We’re just glad the six-speed manual transmission is still available, keeping old-school skills in the GTI’s game.