Since the first generation was launched and until now, Volkswagen sold more than 1.7 million GTI worldwide. Now this success history will go even further with the debut of the sixth generation GTI at the Paris Auto Show. Sales will begin in spring 2009.

2009 Volkswagen Golf GTI
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With a top speed of 148 mph and 207 hp turbo engine, the new GTI offers even more fun to drive, but with a fuel consumption of only 7.5 liters per 100 kilometers.

The Golf GTI comes with an unique combination of agile and athletic engine. At 1800 rpm the engine develops a maximum torque of 280 Nm. After only 7,2 seconds the sprint from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) is completed.

2009 Volkswagen Golf GTI
- image 265041

The GTI features an electronic limited-slip differential called XDS and the Scirocco’s adaptive chassis. At the exterior the new GTi is inspired by the Golf GTI W12 concept, there’s a wide, one-piece lower-grille which is far more aggressive than the three-piece design on the fifth-generation GTI. It features foglights, a narrow upper-grille featuring red-banding and a rear diffuser which features twin exhausts.

Press release

"What else was there in 1976?" calls out "Strietzel", also known as Hans-Joachim Stuck, from the driver’s window as he starts up a first generation Golf GTI after more than thirty years. "Whenever a person had a chance to drive a 911, it was a real experience. And then all of a sudden this experience was possible in the GTI too. Clearly on a different level, but affordable for everyone. That was the genius of this car, and it has stayed that way right up to today. The new GTI is a prime example of this." Stuck – one of the true giants of international car racing – works closely with Volkswagen AG. As a representative and driver in car racing, and as an expert in chassis and powertrain tuning in vehicle development, he also put the final touches on the new Golf GTI together with the experts of team "Hackenberg". On the Nürburgring as well, where development chief Dr. Ulrich Hackenberg and Hans-Joachim Stuck competed in parallel, driving Sciroccos for glory and professional experience in last year’s 24-hour race.

2009 Volkswagen Golf GTI
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Volkswagen is right at home on the Nürburgring’s North Loop. It has always been that way. And the GTI too. Even before sales of the GTI began, it was present on the track of the "Green Hell" before thousands of spectators in 1975 – as a pace car in the prototype stage with a two-barrel carburetor instead of electronic injection. The rest is history. Automotive history. "The 110-PS engine of the GTI", recalls Stuck, "had a willingness to rev that was fun from day one. There had been nothing like it before. That is why the first GTI made such a statement."

In 2004, the fifth Golf GTI brought back this legend more powerfully than ever before. Between the debut of the first generation and the production runout of the fifth generation, more than 1.7 million car buyers made the GTI a world bestseller. Now this is being followed up by the sixth GTI, even sharper and more confident than all of the others before it. A GTI whose chassis systems – with standard electronic transverse differential lock (XDS) – redefines behavior in curves and traction. A 240 km/h fast GTI that is more fun to drive with its powerful 155 kW / 210 PS turbo engine and yet only consumes 7.3 liters super unleaded (0.7 l/100 km improvement). A GTI that delivers audible dynamics with a sound generator and new exhaust system design (two tailpipes, one left and one right). A GTI that successfully transfers the tradition of the original version to the future.

2009 Volkswagen Golf GTI
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German market launch of the sixth GTI will begin in just days. Sales start across Europe just after Easter. North America and Asia will follow in late summer – long ago the GTI success became an international phenomenon.

And Hans-Joachim Stuck (58) is more than just a figurehead of Volkswagen Motorsports and more than an expert who just looks for vehicle weaknesses. "Strietzel", the nickname given to him as a baby by his godmother, and by which he is still called today by friends, is a GTI fan: "We always had a GTI in the family, from the first to the sixth. The Pirelli Editions too. There were no gaps here. Even when I was under contract with BMW, I preferred to drive to the Nürburgring in a GTI. It was in a GTI that I drove 911 drivers to distraction on the North Loop. My wife was even driving a GTI when she first caught my attention."

Engine of the GTI

In the case of the Golf GTI generation VI, the fascination for Stuck began once again with the engine: "It is extremely important that the current GTI, like the last one, should be another turbo. This boosted high-tech engine fits in perfectly with our times. It is more fuel efficient than a large displacement engine, but thanks to the turbocharger it is just as athletic." And that is a key aspect of the Golf GTI tradition too: As early as the second generation, the G60 had an impressive boosted four cylinder engine (118 kW / 160 PS). Later, the era of boosted GTI engines really gained momentum with the fourth generation in the "Golf GTI 132 kW" (the exact name). The technology and times were ready for this approach. A limited edition (3,000 cars) of the 132 kW / 180-PS version was introduced on the GTI’s 25th anniversary in 2001. Although there had already been a 150-PS turbo, it did not yet have the aggressive punch of the anniversary version. With the launch of the fifth Golf GTI, an entirely new turbocharged four-cylinder engine was employed, which delivered a power of 147 kW / 200 PS. On the 30th anniversary of the GTI, a 169 kW / 230 PS turbo engine was introduced in the Golf GTI Edition 30. Somewhat later, this new engine also powered the second Pirelli GTI.

2009 Volkswagen Golf GTI
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At exactly 155 kW / 210 PS, in terms of power level the new Golf GTI’s TSI engine is positioned between the last production GTI and the 30 Year Edition. Although its performance and displacement data might suggest an advanced development of the 200-PS engine, this was actually a new powerplant of the "EA888" generation of engines whose technical origins were in the 230-PS version.

The TSI that is used in the sixth GTI is a product of the second development stage of these highly agile engines. Compared to the first "EA888" development stage, this engine – optimized for transverse mounting in the new GTI – has new components such as modified pistons and piston rings, a regulated oil pump, a new vacuum pump, a new high-pressure fuel pump and a new mass airflow sensor. When used in the most powerful Golf today, the engine fulfills limits of the Euro-5 emissions standard.

Performance of the GTI

When it comes to emissions and fuel economy, the new 210-PS engine has advanced far ahead of the two previous GTI four-cylinder engines with 200 and 230 PS. To be specific, the 1,984 cm3 displacement TSI on the new GTI is content with just 7.3 liters fuel per 100 kilometers on average. On the 200-PS GTI, fuel consumption was 8.0 liters, and the 230-PS GTI came in at 8.2 liters per 100 kilometers. So the theoretical range of the sixth GTI is about 750 kilometers between fill-ups.

2009 Volkswagen Golf GTI
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At 170 g/km, the engine also shows marked improvement in CO2 emissions. "And the new GTI," says Hans-Joachim Stuck, "succeeds in bridging the gap between a serious business car during the work week, and a competitor on the Nürburgring on the weekend." In this context, it should be noted that the first Golf GTI in 1976 had a power of exactly 81 kW / 110 PS and a top speed of 182 km/h, and at that time it was also one of the few cars to perform this balancing act.

The new GTI successfully addresses these aspects while attending to the property of most interest to GTI buyers – besides the car’s appearance – which is its dynamic performance. At a low 1,700 rpm the engine already develops its maximum torque of 280 Newton-meter. And this reserve torque is available as a constant value – exhibiting an ideal plateau in the torque curve that is not really a curve any longer – up to 5,200 rpm. Stuck says: "In practice, this means impressive power in all of life’s situations." The maximum power of the sixteen-valve engine with 9.6:1 compression ratio can be tapped over a speed range from 5,300 to 6,200 rpm.

The resulting package delivers enormous propulsive force; the car completes its acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h in just 6.9 seconds, and the new Golf GTI handles a 1,000 meter sprint from a standstill in 27.3 seconds. Just as impressive is the engine’s elasticity. In fifth gear, the Volkswagen accelerates from 80 to 120 km/h in just 7.5 seconds. Even in sixth gear it only takes 9.5 seconds. Not until 240 km/h is a balance reached between air resistance (cw = 0.324) and power. The tachometer indicates 5,900 rpm at this top speed.

2009 Volkswagen Golf GTI
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Like the previous model, for the new GTI an optional 6-speed dual clutch transmission (DSG) will be offered as an alternative to the 6-speed manual transmission (including standard upshift recommendation as on the BlueMotion). In this case, the Golf delivers a top speed of 238 km/h (at 5,920 rpm). Like the manually shifted GTI, the DSG version also accelerates to 100 km/h in 6.9 seconds. Its average fuel consumption of 7.4 liters (173 g/km CO2) nearly matches the excellent value of the manual transmission (7.3 liters).

Yet the numbers themselves only tell half of the story about the dual clutch transmission. Stuck: "The DSG is incredibly fast and precise. And the way in which the Golf GTI with DSG automatically double declutches when downshifting is a joy for any sports car driver. Interesting is the fact that the pedal position on the very first GTI, and of course also on the normal Golf, was laid out so that well-versed car drivers could double declutch properly." According to forecasts, about 30 percent of all GTI drivers will order the sporty Volkswagen with DSG.

Sound of the GTI

The engine and exhaust system of the new Golf GTI are making their appearance with an entirely unique and typical GTI sound. A sound that makes a very sporty impression yet does not irritate car occupants on long tours. On the exterior, the noise level is fully regulated by the newly developed GTI exhaust system. The only visible components of the exhaust system are the pair of chrome tailpipes integrated in the GTI’s black diffuser, one on the left and one on the right. Inside, a complex exhaust routing system produces the typical GTI sound. In parallel, it was possible to reduce the weight of the system and its back pressure. And that has a direct positive impact on driving performance and fuel economy. Moreover, a sound generator ensures that the sonorous engine acoustics are perfectly "mixed" in the car’s interior as well.

Chassis of the GTI

2009 Volkswagen Golf GTI
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"Physical handling limits" always come into play when the safety reserves of a chassis need to be determined. The actual boundaries of the new Golf GTI’s physical handling limits are revealed when a driver like Hans-Joachim Stuck is at the wheel. Just a few laps in Hockenheim or on the Nürburgring or a few kilometers in the "Maritime Alps" on the mountain roads above Nice are sufficient for the former Formula-1 driver and endurance race world champion to very analytically describe why the Golf GTI drives at the level of significantly more expensive sports cars and – this is crucial – can also excite the drivers of such extremely expensive sports cars.

Stuck: "It becomes immediately apparent just how precisely the GTI tracks steering inputs. And this steering precision is directly reflected in driving quality. The production car chassis offers practically no hint of body roll. The car’s quasi lack of roll and pitch results in very safe driving behavior. However, the GTI not only handles with sports car stiffness; it is also very comfortable. The electronic damper control of its new DCC system, in particular, produces an ideal synthesis of great comfort and excellent handling properties in the GTI. There are of course many sporty cars that are simply too stiff. Yet this one is always right. That must be stated very clearly."

The sixth Golf GTI is equipped with a sport chassis; its front end was lowered by 22 millimeters, and its rear by 15 millimeters. The entire architecture of springs, dampers and rear stabilizers was completely re-tuned. In front, the familiar strut-type suspension operates with helical springs and telescoping shock absorbers. In the rear, an innovative multi-link suspension ensures that the ESP system seldom needs to intervene. The braking system is also extremely durable. Distinctive here are the red painted brake calipers.

2009 Volkswagen Golf GTI
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Sportier and safer with XDS

For the first time in a Volkswagen, the XDS electronic transverse differential lock is being used. It significantly improves traction and handling properties. Technically speaking, XDS is a functional extension of the electronic limited-slip differential (EDS) integrated in the ESP system.

In fast curve driving, as soon as the innovative electronics detects that the wheel at the inside of the curve on the GTI’s driven front axle is insufficiently loaded, the ESP hydraulics specifically builds up braking pressure at this wheel to restore optimal traction. So XDS acts as a type of transverse differential lock that compensates for the understeering that is typical on front-wheel drive vehicles when driving fast through curves.

The results: Thanks to XDS, driving behavior is significantly more precise and neutral; drivers perceive this as more like the handling characteristics of a car with all-wheel drive than those of front-wheel drive. Hans-Joachim Stuck: "Beyond the GTI’s already good chassis layout, XDS gives the car an enormous measure of driving stability. And it leads to greater driving enjoyment, since it reduces understeering. Experienced sports car drivers will be much more active underway. Yet, XDS is a very important safety feature for normal drivers too, because they will not experience any unpleasant surprises with the GTI. It simply would no longer press ahead."

Dynamic yet comfortable with DCC

2009 Volkswagen Golf GTI
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In addition, the dynamic chassis control (DCC) system mentioned by Strietzel is available on the new GTI. It continually reacts to the roadway and driving situation and modifies the damper characteristic accordingly. The driver perceives the significant advances in comfort and dynamic performance directly. During acceleration, braking and steering actions, damping is stiffened in just fractions of a second to optimally satisfy vehicle dynamic requirements and reduce pitch and roll movements as described by Stuck.

To let drivers choose the desired system behavior, besides the "Normal" program with a basic medium setting, DCC on the Golf GTI also offers the "Sport" and "Comfort" modes that are activated by a pushbutton above the shift gate. In "Sport" mode, the power steering is also tuned for greater dynamic responsiveness.

Cruising safely with ACC

For the first time, the distance control system ACC (Adaptive Cruise Control) will be offered on the Golf GTI starting in late summer 2009. When ACC is activated, the system automatically brakes and accelerates the GTI within a speed window from 30 to 210 km/h. Above all, when cruising at constant speed, e.g. at the speed limit on the freeway, ACC offers a significant plus in comfort and safety.

2009 Volkswagen Golf GTI
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Distance control is implemented with a laser sensor in the rearview mirror that continually scans the distance to the vehicle in front of the car and its speed using five laser beams. The system operates successfully in curve driving too. ACC is controlled via a lever on the steering column. Important: As soon as the ACC system reaches its limits, the driver is asked to resume control by visual and acoustic warning signals.

Park Assist Generation II

Another high-end technology on the new Golf GTI is the optional Park Assist park steering assistant. The second generation of the system is used here. It enables nearly automatic back-up parking parallel to the roadway. The driver just needs to actuate the gas pedal, brake and (in the manually shifted version) clutch, while the GTI steers into the pre-scanned space by sensor control. Previously, the space had to be at least 1.4 meters longer than the vehicle; now 1.1 meters is sufficient. In addition, the system now enables multiple forward-reverse stages in parking. Park Assist deactivates itself as soon as the driver manually intervenes in steering. When the GTI is ordered with this system, the acoustic proximity warning system ParkPilot (front and rear) and Hill Hold Control are included too.

Bi-xenon headlights with curve lighting

2009 Volkswagen Golf GTI
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As an option, Volkswagen is offering the Golf GTI with completely redesigned bi-xenon headlights, including dynamic curve lighting. The headlights swivel through a steering radius of up to 13 degrees to the outside and seven degrees to the inside. The styling of the headlights closely matches the GTI’s sporty character. The interior dual modules (xenon outboard, parking light / turn signals inboard) each have a chrome pod through which a very impressive visual image projects. Placed low below the bumper – and also GTI-specific in design – are the vertically aligned and always standard front fog lights.

Interior of the GTI

If there is such a thing as total ergonomic perfection, then it is to be found in the new GTI. Stuck: "This ambiance lacks nothing that a person would have in a luxury sedan. Nonetheless, the interior is uncompromisingly sporty. This begins with the seats. They offer a high degree of long touring comfort and are equally fit to run a 24-hour race. The GTI is super comfortable, super ergonomic. You can adjust everything on the seat. But there is no need to. You just climb in, move the seat forward once then back, and that is it. Sit down. Done. A perfect fit." A genuine compliment.

The Golf GTI is equipped with standard sport seats, which – as once before – are upholstered in a tartan fabric pattern ("Jacky"). Leather seats ("Vienna") are available as an option. A lumbar support integrated in the seats is positioned by a lever on the side of the seat. For safety, whiplash-optimized head restraints (WOKS) are also on board. The head restraints precisely counteract whiplash in case of an accident. The GTI logo has been worked into the WOKS material.

2009 Volkswagen Golf GTI
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Additional features: Naturally, this Golf also has pedals with brushed stainless steel caps, a customized GTI gearshift lever in aluminum look, a leather steering wheel with grip recesses and GTI emblem; naturally there are decorative red seams on the steering wheel, gearshift surround and leather parking brake grip; naturally the roofliner is black, and so is the pillar trim. Naturally, because this Golf is a GTI. That is why the decorative inserts in the doors and instruments are also customized with "Black Stripe" style elements – black, high-gloss accents in metallic look. In any case, the GTI breaks through class boundaries with its high-end surfaces and features that are pleasing to the touch and the eye. The impression made by the materials and their workmanship, details like brushed chrome accents and elegant round instruments give the impression of actually sitting in a car of the next higher class, or in a far more expensive sports car. In contrast to most sports cars, however, the Golf GTI offers ample space for five persons. Its cargo capacity of between 350 and 1,305 liters also ensures that GTI drivers can handle nearly all of the challenges of daily life with confidence.

Design as Homage to the First GTI

The new GTI was created under the direction of Walter de Silva (Head of Group Design), Klaus Bischoff (Head of Brand Design) and Marc Lichte (Head of Exterior Design). And the car that de Silva, Bischoff and Lichte realized together does great credit to the first GTI. "We wanted a consistently clear GTI design, a car that has power, but style as well", is how Walter de Silva sums it up. "Also cast in stone was the goal of evoking the character of the first GTI a bit more", says Klaus Bischoff. "And that is why it was decided that – with the exception of the aerodynamically important rear spoiler – the new GTI would not have a single exterior add-on, unlike the usual practice in this segment", emphasizes Marc Lichte.

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Wide, powerful GTI front end

Even the first GTI generation already exhibited a consistent horizontal alignment of elements in the radiator mask and headlights. The red grille surround is legendary. That made the original GTI look wider than it actually was. But it shared this basic design concept with lower-powered Golf versions. Generation V of the GTI, on the other hand, intentionally set itself apart from its less powerful counterparts. That is why – over five years ago – the team led by Lichte chose a black, high-gloss grille in V form. Since that time, any child was able to recognize it as a GTI. The new one too. It now melds stylistic elements of both of these GTI icons. Details such as the typical honeycomb radiator screen, and the V-shaped engine hood extending over the headlights, were contributed by the GTI V. The clear horizontal alignment, meanwhile, definitely originates from the GTI I.

The entire bumper plus radiator grille and inner design of the headlights are a new creation. The outer grille painted in high-gloss black is a flat surface again; a red stripe frames it at the top and bottom. To the left of the VW logo there is a GTI signature (from the first through the third generation it was always on the right).

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On the level beneath, a trim strip in car color extends crosswise. At the center of the bottom section there is another air inlet that is very large. Toward the sides of the car it transitions to three cross beams, left and right, that look like gills; they end in the visually dominant fog lights that are arranged upright, or on edge. The plastic surfaces around the gills are painted in anthracite-metallic color, so that their contours do not disappear into a black hole. The fog lights – located extremely far outboard – visually draw the lower section of the bumper further outward than ever before. This stylistic touch and the basically horizontal formal styling of the front end give the 4.21 meter long Golf GTI a visual appearance that is wider (1.78 meter), lower (1.47 meter) and more dynamic than any other car of this class. A genuine GTI that can be recognized as such from five kilometers away.

Stylish GTI side profile

The sides of the new GTI are dominated by a very prominent character line that is drawn from the headlights to the taillights. Supported on this line – that is modeled as a muscular shoulder in the rear – is the roof. These proportions give the Golf GTI a lot of visual energy.

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In its side profile, it is the bumpers extending far outboard and the unique form of the door sills that distinguish this GTI. The Golf GTI V had black sills set above the actual longitudinal beams, which extended from one wheel well to the other. The sills of the GTI VI are also black – but that is where the commonalities end. The aerodynamically sensible sills on the new car do not extend the full length, and this gives them a considerably more refined appearance and make the car appear lighter. The standard 17-inch "Denver" type alloy wheels – and the highly polished 18-inch "Detroit" alloy wheels available as an option – make a powerful statement. Both are classics of GTI styling. While the five U-shaped openings on the 17-inch wheels are designed in silver, the 18-inch wheels have a black piano paint look.

Rear of a GTI

There is hardly a rear section that is so unmistakable as that of the new Golf GTI. Here too the wide bumper was completely redesigned. Under the bumper is a black diffuser that channels air from beneath the vehicle and generates added downforce at the rear axle. A pair of chrome tailpipes is integrated in the outer regions of the diffuser, right and left.

Also redesigned was the roof-edge spoiler. The new rear spoiler – working in tandem with the diffuser – perfects the car’s orientation to the road at very high speeds. Since the rear spoiler is larger than its counterpart used on the "normal" Golf, it extends further into the rear window and makes it visually flatter and wider; yet it does not impair the driver’s view.

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The GTI Phenomenon

When car drivers are asked why they purchased a GTI, they first mention the car’s exterior styling, followed by its overall performance, i.e. the combination of a sporty chassis and an agile engine. Precisely these two aspects – styling and performance – were rearranged by the Generation VI development team to bring the sports car’s character into even greater harmony with the original GTI concept. And that means: clear styling plus pure dynamics. No more, no less.

And because the Golf GTI is no ordinary car – it is also an automotive perspective on the world – it is worth taking a look at the facts behind the "GTI phenomenon": the Golf GTI is the global market leader in the high-performance section of its class. The same holds true in Europe and Germany. 84 percent of buyers are men, and six out of ten of them are married. 70 percent of all GTI drivers have more than one car, have no children and are under 50 years of age (average age is 39). Their three favorite colors are black, white and red. 78 percent of new customers always wanted to drive a GTI sometime. Volkswagen also asked the GTI drivers about their dream car. The key wording here: if money were no object. And the response was truly resounding: for nearly 30 percent the GTI would be their first choice, even if they had all of the money in the world. An extraordinary compliment. Incidentally, taking places 2 and 3 of this hit list were the Porsche 911 and the Audi R8, two super sports cars from the same Group.

History of the Golf GTI

June 1976 marked the production launch of the first Golf GTI. The planned output of what was originally a limited edition: 5,000 GTIs. But it turned out entirely differently. The 81 kW / 110 PS strong and 182 km/h fast Golf GTI won over a new group of customers and founded the GTI class. Over five GTI generations, the original 5,000 units turned into more than 1.7 million. No other compact sports car in the world even comes close to being that successful. What follows is an overview of the key events in the history of the Golf GTI up to market launch of the sixth generation:

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1976: Debut of first generation Golf GTI
(1.6 liter with 81 kW / 110 PS)

1979: Facelift

1982: Performance boost of the Golf GTI
(1.8 liter with 82 kW / 112 PS)

1983: Introduction of the "Pirelli GTI"
(officially "Special Model Golf GTI", features included special wheels)

1984: Debut of second generation Golf GTI
(1.8 liter with 82 kW / 112 PS)

1984: Introduction of catalytic converter
(79 kW / 107 PS instead of 82 kW / 112 PS)

1985: Facelift, dual headlights and dual tailpipes

1986: Introduction of the Golf GTI 16V
(1.8 liter with 102 kW / 139 PS and 95 kW / 129 PS with catalytic converter)

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1990: Introduction of the Golf GTI G60
(1.8 liter with 118 kW / 160 PS)

1991: Debut of third generation Golf GTI
(2.0 liter with 85 kW / 115 PS)

1992: Introduction of the Golf GTI 16V
(2.0 liter with 110 kW / 150 PS)

1996: Presentation of anniversary model "20 years of GTI"
(2.0 liter with 85 kW / 115 PS and 110 kW / 150 PS
and for the first time 1.9 TDI with 81 kW / 110 PS)

1998: Debut of fourth generation Golf GTI
(1.8 T with 110 kW / 150 PS, 2.3 V5 with 110 / 150 PS
and 1.9 TDI with 81 kW / 90 PS);
later 2.3 V5 with 125 kW / 170 PS,
1.9 TDI with 85 kW / 115 PS and 96 kW / 130 PS)

2000: Introduction of the most powerful Golf GTI TDI to date
(1.9 TDI with 110 kW / 150 PS)

2001: Introduction of the Golf GTI "25 years of GTI"
(1.8 T with 132 kW / 180 PS)

2004: Debut of fifth generation Golf GTI
(2.0 TSI with 147 kW / 200 PS and optional 6-speed DSG)

2006: Presentation of anniversary model "Golf GTI Edition 30"
(2.0 TSI with 169 kW / 230 PS)

2007: Presentation of special edition "Golf Pirelli GTI"
(2.0 TSI with 169 kW / 230 PS)

2008: World premiere of sixth generation Golf GTI
in October as concept car at Paris Motor Show

2009: Debut of sixth generation Golf GTI
International press presentation in March / April in Southern France; start of market launch phase in Europe
(2.0 TSI with 155 kW / 210 PS and optional 6-speed DSG)

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Exclusive Standard Features

Within the sixth Golf generation, the GTI assumes the position of an independent, top sports car model. And so its standard features are already exclusive. Aboard the new Golf GTI, there are features that cannot be had on any other Golf model. They include top-notch sport seats in front with GTI-typical "Jacky" fabric covers, leather gearshift grip with aluminum trim, black accents ("Black Stripe"), leather sport steering wheel with GTI logo that is flatter at the bottom and a black roofliner. Identifying this Golf as a GTI on the exterior – besides the styling specifications – are details such as standard 17-inch alloy wheels ("Denver" type), red painted brake calipers, chrome tailpipes in the diffuser and smoked taillights. Furthermore, all GTIs come with stainless steel pedals, automatic climate control ("Climatronic"), front fog lights including turning light and ParkPilot. An overview of key standard features on the Golf GTI:

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  • Chrome tailpipes, left and right
  • Outside mirror housings and door handles in car color
  • Brake calipers painted red
  • GTI rear spoiler in car color
  • Radiator grille in honeycomb structure with GTI logo
  •  "Denver" alloy wheels (4), size 7 1/2 J x 17
  • Tire size 225/45 R 17
  • Smoked taillights
  • Green tinted window glass




  • Cup holders in front (2) and rear (1)
  • Covered storage compartment in roofliner
  • Storage bins in doors (with 1.5 liter bottle holder in front)
  • Storage pockets on backs of front seats
  • Chrome accent in rotary light switch
  • Decorative chrome bezels on instruments in instrument cluster and on air vents
  • Roofliner in black
  • "Black Stripe" trim inserts for instrument panel and door trim
  • "Easy Entry" feature
  • Cargo area trim with extra storage bin on right
  • Leather parking brake grip
  • Glove box with cooling feature, illuminated and lockable
  • Lumbar supports in front
  • Center armrest in front with storage box, air vents (2) and cup holders in rear (2)
  • Pedals in stainless steel
  • Rear bench seat, one piece, folding seatbacks asymmetrically split with center armrest and pass-through feature
  • Leather gearshift grip with aluminum accent
  • Fabric seat covers in "Jacky" pattern
  • Sport steering wheel (3-spoke) in leather, with aluminum accent
  • Sport seats in front
  • Bag hooks in cargo area
  • Heated front seats
  • Height adjustment on front seats


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  • Airbag for driver and front passenger, with front passenger airbag deactivation and knee airbag on driver’s side
  • Electronic stabilization program (ESP) with countersteering support including comfort braking assistant, ABS, EDS and ASR
  • ISOFIX anchorage points (preparation for mounting 2 child seats on the rear bench seat)
  • Head airbag system for front and rear passengers, including side airbags in front
  • Front fog lights with chrome frames including turning lights (GTI without turning lights)
  • ParkPilot – acoustic warning signals when obstacles are detected in front of or behind vehicle
  • Electronic immobilizer




  • Outside mirror, aspherical on driver’s side
  • Outside mirror with lowerable passenger’s side mirror
  • Dual-tone signal horn
  • XDS electronic differential lock
  • Power windows
  • Cargo area lighting
  • Rear window wiper with intermittent switch
  • Interior lighting in front with shutoff delay; contact switches in all doors
  • Instrument backlighting white, dimmable; red night design for switches
  • "Climatronic" automatic climate control with 2-zone temperature control, separate left and right control
  • Steering column with height and length adjustment
  • Reading lamps with chrome bezels in front (2) and rear (2)
  • Make-up mirror in sun visors, illuminated, left and right
  • Multifunctional display "Plus"
  • "RCD 210" radio with MP3 playback function including CD player
  • Automatic heating of windshield washer nozzles
  • Headlight cleaning system
  • Electro-mechanical power steering with speed-dependent control
  • Sport chassis
  • Dust and pollen filter with activated charcoal insert
  • 12-V outlet in cargo area
  • Daytime running light
  • Bag hooks in cargo area
  • Tire Mobility Set, 12-Volt compressor and tire sealant
  • Warning buzzer if light is left on
  • Warning tone and light if seatbelt is unfastened in front
  • Central locking with RF remote control, folding RF keys (2)


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 Individualized Options

On the sixth generation Golf, numerous high-tech features of the luxury and mid-class car segments have now made their way into the compact segment and the new GTI. These include dynamic chassis control (DCC), the RNS 510 radio-navigation system with hard disk drive and touchscreen and ParkAssist for nearly automatic parking. An overview of all optional features that will be available at market launch:

  • Storage package
  • Dynamic chassis control (DCC)
  • Towing hitch, removable and lockable
  • CD changer for 6 CDs instead of storage box in front center armrest
  • Anti-theft warning system "Plus"
  • Anti-theft warning system "Plus" including individual door opening
  • DAB digital radio reception
  • Driver’s seat, power for sport seats, front
  • Cruise control system
  • "Vienna" leather interior with top sport seats in front
  • "Detroit" alloy wheels (4), size 7 1/2 J x 18 with tires size 225/40 R 18
  • Light and vision package
  • Mobile telephone preparation
  • Premium mobile telephone preparation
  • MEDIA-IN multimedia socket
  • RNS 310 navigation system (for RCD 310)
  • Park Assist park steering assistant including ParkPilot
  • Park Assist park steering assistant including ParkPilot and Rear Assist rearview camera
  • ParkPilot including Rear Assist rearview camera
  • Radio-CD player: RCD 310 DYNAUDIO Excite
  • Radio-CD player: RCD 310 DYNAUDIO Excite, for RNS 310 navigation system
  • Radio-CD player: RCD 310, 4 x 20 Watt, 8 loudspeakers
  • Radio-CD player: RCD 310, 4 x 20 Watt, 8 loudspeakers, for RNS 310 navigation system
  • Radio-CD player: RCD 510 DYNAUDIO Excite
  • Radio-CD player: RCD 510, 4 x 20 Watt, 8 loudspeakers
  • Tire pressure monitoring indicator
  • Radio-Navigation system: RNS 510 DYNAUDIO Excite
  • Radio-Navigation system: RNS 510, 4 x 20 Watt, 8 loudspeakers
  • Power sliding/vent glass sunroof
  • Side airbags and belt tensioners in rear, including acoustic and light warning if seatbelts are unfastened
  • Rear side windows and rear window tinted,65 % light absorbing
  • Mirrors package
  • 4 doors with manual window lifts in rear
  • 4 doors with power window lifts in rear
  • Xenon headlights with curve lighting
2009 Volkswagen Golf GTI
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Alina Moore
Alina Moore
Alina Joined the team in the early 2000s as one of the outlets very first experts, and she’s been with ever since. Over the years, she’s served various roles, but today she’s is relied on heavily to verify automotive facts, assist with formatting, and discover new and engaging topics.  Read full bio
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