Fresh off a redesign in 2015, the VW Golf GTI is primed to take on the midrange of the hot-hatch market while its Golf R sibling tackles the top of the class. With the VW Wörthersee gathering set to kick off on May 13th, the Germans have previewed a special “near-production concept” that it’s calling the GTI Clubsport.

Unfortunately, Volkswagen chose to tease us on its Facebook page with sketches of the exterior of the GTI Clubsport but no real details. This makes it tough to piece together exactly what this model is. My gut tells me that it’ll be a special package that will make the GTI a more track-ready machine, but it could also be just a styling kit.

A track-tuned package would be the perfect middle ground between the GTI and the Golf R, but Volkswagen may not want to risk getting so close to its halo hatchback.

The Wörthersee gathering is right around the corner, so we’ll find out soon enough.

Updated 05/13/2015: Volkswagen dropped the official images and details on the new Golf GTI Clubsport concept.

Continue reading my preview of the GTI Clubsport to learn more about what I think this model has to offer.

  • 2015 Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport
  • Year:
    2015
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Engine:
    inline-4(Est.)
  • Horsepower @ RPM:
    220 (Est.)
  • Displacement:
    2.0 L (Est.)
  • 0-60 time:
    6 sec. (Est.)
  • Top Speed:
    155 mph (Est.)
  • Price:
    45000 (Est.)
  • car segment:
  • body style:

Exterior

2015 Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport High Resolution Exterior Drawings
- image 629584

The VW Golf GTI is one of the more understated performance hatchbacks in terms of looks. Its lines are pretty clean, it’s clear of any insane aerodynamics, and even its wheels are fairly uneventful. The Clubsport model, which will debut in Wörthersee, Australia, appears to turn the looks dial up a few notches.

This model includes a sportier set of ground effects, a sharper lower grille, a set of black air intakes with horizontal fins on the outer edges of the front apron, wheels that are more aggressive, a hatch-mounted spoiler, and a more aggressive rear diffuser.

According to VW, this is a “near-production concept car,” so it’ll likely not be too over the top.

Interior

There are no teaser images of the GTI Clubsport’s cabin, so it is really a guessing game. Changes are that we’ll see a slightly more performance-oriented cabin that includes more racy accents, heavily bolstered seats, some Alcantara, and other race-ready bits. However, don’t look for anything wild, like a roll cage or racing harnesses.

Volkswagen could also aim for weight reduction with this model, which may result in the removal of typical creature comforts like the audio system, air conditioning, and other unnecessary weight-increasing items.

Drivetrain

2015 Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport High Resolution Exterior Drawings
- image 629582

As standard, the 2015 VW Golf GTI uses a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that produces 210 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of twist. This power heads through a standard six-speed manual transmission or an optional DSG dual-clutch gearbox on its way to the front wheels.

Chances are that VW leaves well enough alone under the hood, but it may include the Performance Package, which bumps the output to 220 horses. Where I feel VW will push things in the GTI Clubsport is in the chassis. Look for wide and sticky tires, updated dampers and springs, reduced unsprung weight, larger brakes, and a lower ride height.

Conclusion

2015 Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport High Resolution Exterior Drawings
- image 629583

It’s hard to say whether this “near-production concept” will make it to actual production or not, but it looks like it could be a possibility. The looks of the GTI Clubsport are not overly crazy, and the market for track-ready hatchbacks is ripe for the picking. A track-tuned GTI with reduced weight, an upgraded suspension, and only a mild price hike would likely be a welcome addition.

  • Leave it
    • Uncertain if it will hit production
    • No real details

Source: Volkswagen

Press Release

Next year, the Golf GTI celebrates its 40th birthday. Volkswagen is marking this historic event with a progressive anniversary model: the new Golf GTI Clubsport. Volkswagen will be showcasing the Golf GTI Clubsport on 14th May as part of the legendary GTI meet at Lake Wörthersee, when it will make its world premiere in the form of a near-production concept car.

2015 Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport High Resolution Exterior
- image 630067

With a power output of 195 kW / 265 PS (35 PS more than the Golf GTI Performance) and top performance temporarily increased by around a further 10 per cent thanks to a boost function, the Golf GTI Clubsport is set to take off at the start of 2016 as the most powerful production ’GTI’ yet. The anniversary model is being launched not only with an extremely powerful engine, but also with an individualised interior and exclusive bodywork details.

2015 Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport High Resolution Exterior
- image 630068

The design modifications include a completely new front bumper, new side sills, a new and aerodynamically highly innovative roof-edge spoiler and a specially developed rear diffuser. All of these features were designed with the aim of further enhancing the GTI’s performance and of thereby bringing form and function into perfect harmony. The interplay of the very high power output thanks to the boost function and significantly improved levels of downforce move the Golf GTI Clubsport into the realms of motorsport driving dynamics. Consequently, handling remains extremely stable even at very high speeds. Breath-taking cornering speeds are also possible. The new Golf GTI Clubsport thus makes a great case for itself as unadulterated sports car.

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Press release
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