2022 Volkswagen Golf R Variant
Performance and practicality are two words that rarely go together. More often than not we talk about the perfect compromise between the two, rather than the perfect blend. That doesn’t stop manufacturers from trying to give us the best performing version of a normal car.
Station wagons, in particular, seem to be making a comeback and currently, Volkswagen is rigorously testing a more practical version of its Golf R – the Variant. Regardless of which version we talk about, the people’s car from Germany has always been a good all-rounder, but does the Golf R Variant still has what it takes to compete?
2021 Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR
The Mk. 8 Golf GTI TCR will build on top of an already amazing package to take things to the next level. As a model that’s more oriented toward the driver, it’ll feature a whopping 300 horsepower, all of which will be shunted through an eight-speed DCT. There’s no definite on-sale date as of yet, but it should launch in late 2020 as a 2021 model.
Update 5/12/2020: The Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR was spotted in the wild with almost no camo. Check it out in our special “Spy Shots” section below!
2021 Volkswagen Arteon R
The Volkswagen Arteon came to our attention back in 2017, during its unveil at the Geneva Motor Show. Three years into the fastback-shaped sedan’s career, Volkswagen is planning to give the Arteon a well-deserved nip and tuck which would keep customer interest fresh and address the areas that needed further improvements.
With the refreshed Arteon, however, we’re expecting Volkswagen to introduce a spicier, more performance oriented version under its notorious R badge. Our suspicions are backed up by a recent set of spy shots that show a virtually undisguised test mule that wears a lot of R-specific features. Allow us to detail, then.
Update 4/29/2020: The Volkswagen Arteon R was spotted once again, this time sporting a look that represents the upcoming facelift and what we can expect from the new Arteon R. Check it out in our special Spy Shots section below!
2021 Volkswagen Golf R Mk8
Here it is, ladies and gentlemen! It’s been a long road to get to this point, but now we’re finally getting our first look at the next-generation 2021 Volkswagen Golf R. A test mule of the big daddy VW Golf R was recently spotted doing some test runs in the snow, and yes, this particular prototype is wearing nothing but fresh paint.
There’s no camouflage in sight, allowing us to see the next-generation car in all its glory. Specific details in the prototype present clear markings of the new Golf R’s DNA so unless Volkswagen has a surprise for us with a different Golf-based hot hatch, what we’re looking at here is the next-generation MK8 Golf R.
There’s no set timetable on when it’s expected to arrive, but with the just-as-new Golf GTI expected to debut at the 2020 Geneva Motor Show, Volkswagen could hold off the R’s debut for later in the year. Or it could join the Golf GTI in Geneva. Either way, the all-new Golf R is here.
2021 Volkswagen SMV
The 2021 Volkswagen SMV is a brand-new SUV that the German firm will unleash on the Chinese market sometime in 2020. Based on a concept vehicle unveiled at the 2019 Shanghai Auto Show, the SMV is slightly bigger than the Atlas, currently the company’s longest SUV.
Specifically, at 201 inches long the SMV is almost three inches longer than the Atlas, sold as the Teramont in China. The production model doesn’t have an official name yet, but it was spotted testing in cold weather in Sweden. But don’t get your hopes up, although Volkswagen is testing it in Europe, the SMV will be a China-only vehicle. Let’s find out more about it in the speculative review below.
2020 Volkswagen Golf Mk8 GTI
The seventh-generation Volkswagen Golf GTI may still be the most popular hot-hatchback out there, but it’s getting a bit long in the tooth after more than four years on the market. With Ford already working on a new-generation Focus ST, which will be significantly more powerful than the current Golf GTI, Volkswagen needs to roll out a new hatchback really soon. Fortunately, the Germans are already testing the next-generation Golf GTI, which is rumored to break cover sometime in 2019.
Not much is known about the upcoming performance hatchback, but it should borrow many design features seen on recently introduced Volkswagen models, including the sporty Arteon sedan. The company also promises a revolution inside the cabin, including a "total digital environment," according to design chief Klaus Bischoff. Set to use a revised version of the company’s MQB platform, it will also a new engine with power ratings of up to 250 horsepower. Let’s find out more about that in the speculative review below.
Updated 12/30/2019: The 2021 Volkswagen Golf MK8 GTI was caught doing some cold-weather testing with next to no camo and zero padding. Check out the new images and the latest details in our spy shots section below!
2020 Volkswagen Golf 8 GTE
With Dieselgate still not just an ugly distant memory in the back of Volkswagen’s brain, Wolfsburg looks like it’s leading the electrification revolution in the car world, driven by the traction offered by the behemoth that is the Volkswagen Group. But Volkswagen, as a brand, irrespective of what its other sisters and brothers are doing, has become synonymous with electrification plans of all sorts.
This so-called offensive will ultimately rub off on VW’s future models. TheID.3 is already out of the bag, but for now, the company is busy at work preparing the new Golf 8 for debut. When that finally happens on October the 24th, the new Golf will also come as a mild-hybrid model, the first in its history, as well as in the shape of conventionally-powered versions (i.e., diesel and gasoline variants). What’s more, the VW Golf will also receive a plug-in hybrid iteration under the GTE moniker, but no e-Golf model - since the ID.3 is already here to cover the all-electric ground. So with the e-Golf out of the scene, we’ll focus on the new VW Golf 8 GTE, which was caught during pre-production tests by our spy photographers.
2020 Volkswagen ID.3
The 2020 Volkswagen ID.3 is an all-electric compact hatchback that the German automaker unveiled at the 2019 Frankfurt Motor Show. The 2020 ID.3 is the first Volkswagen based on the new MEB platform, which will underpin a full range of electric vehicles in the future. Heavily based on the ID Neo concept, the 2020 ID.3 is similar to the Volkswagen Golf in size, so it’s pretty much a replacement for the e-Golf.
A competitor for models like the Nissan Leaf, Chevrolet Bolt, and Tesla Model 3, the 2020 Volkswagen ID.3 is available with three drivetrains that provide different outputs and mileage ratings. The range-topping model will deliver in excess of 200 horsepower and return more than 300 miles of range on a single charge. The 2020 ID.3 will cost less than €30,000 in Europe. Sadly, this EV won’t come to the United States. Let’s find out more about it in the detailed review below.
2020 Volkswagen ID.4
With an impending approach of the numerous Volkswagen ID electric cars, the spy photographers come into their own finally having a proper reason to film camouflaged Volkswagens. The latest that fell victim to a spy photographer’s lens is a curiously uncovered Volkswagen Tiguan. It was wheeling, silently, in nearly the same way as that Golf Sportsvan I wrote about earlier. As it turns out, this one famously hides the body of the next Volkswagen ID Crozz. It is definitely one of the most important electric vehicles that will appear in the next year or two, and this is essentially all that we know about it.
Update 08/11/2019: We spotted the Volkswagen ID Crozz testing with what we believe to be official metal. Check out our latest spy shots and what we’ve learned in our special spy shots section below!
2020 Volkswagen Golf Crossover
Volkswagen actively tests an all-new, raised Golf. We have seen it in Sweden in the winter, and even on the Nurburgring in May. While Volkswagen did not announce anything new in the Golf lineup, we may be surprised with a new Golf-based crossover, or an innovative, fresh, jacked up version of the popular hatchback. As Volkswagen actively seeks out new segments to sell its vehicles in, I can identify at least two market brackets where the new Golf-based crossover or just a jacked up hatch could play its part.
If you look closely at the Mercedes-Benz lineup, you can see that its entry-level crossover - the GLA - feels like a jacked-up version of the A-class. If Volkswagen creates something similar to it, based around the Golf’s basic shape and chassis, then it would be the only manufacturer in this very tight segment to offer a cheaper alternative to the GLA.
On the other hand, a raised Golf hatch might not be anything more than just a hatchback version of the upcoming Golf Alltrack. That car would directly compete with the cool Ford Focus Active!
If it comes to fruition, this alleged new five-seat crossover will sit between the T-Cross and the T-Roc within the Volkswagen lineup. Interestingly enough, Volkswagen did announce an all-new five-seat crossover at its media event earlier this year. This might well be it, and I would not be surprised if Germans transform slow-selling Golf Plus into a sort of a crossover.
The European version of the Volkswagen Passat is set to get a facelift for the 2019 model year, bringing it more in line with the new look of the new Volkswagen Arteon and maybe even bring some new updated engines and technology into play as well. It was recently spotted being put through the general testing phase, so it’s time to get the speculation mill running at full speed.
Updated 12/06/2018: The Volkswagen Passat is inching closer to production status and we’ve just updated the gallery below with the latest spy shots.
2019 Volkswagen T-Roc R
The Volkswagen T-Roc R is not yet officially unveiled, but we know what it looks like thanks to a fresh round of spy shots. The car has been spotted at the Nurburgring numerous times where it’s undergoing high-performance tests while giving us a clue of what to expect. Spy shots reveal the T-Roc R sans any camouflage, and it looks largely similar to the regular T-Roc with just a few minor updates to make it stand out.
2019 Volkswagen T-Roc GTI
Launched in 2017, the T-Roc is Volkswagen’s smallest crossover yet. Built on the MQB platform that underpins several Volkswagen Group vehicles, it’s related to the Audi Q2 and Seat Arona and competes against the likes of the Nissan Juke, Toyota C-HR, and Renault Captur. Ever since it arrived in showrooms, there have been rumors that Volkswagen may develop a GTI version of the mini SUV. Come 2018, and the beefed-up crossover was spotted testing on public roads.
Performance-oriented models are quite rare in this niche. Although the segment is populated by at least ten models from various companies in Europe, none of them are available with power upgrades. Nissan used to offer a Nismo version of the Juke, or even the extreme, GT-R-powered Juke-R, but these variants are no longer available. This means that the T-Roc GTI will be a unique model and will have the entire market to itself. At least for a while. Let’s find out what it may bring to the table in the speculative review below.
2019 Volkswagen T-Cross
New spy shots of the Polo-based Volkswagen T-Cross are giving us a clear idea of what to expect when the smallest member of VW’s crossover family hits dealerships next year. The T-Cross was seen testing in and around the Nurburgring with heavy camouflage covering its front and rear sections. The crossover’s design elements are slowly unraveling, and from the looks of it, the T-Cross is going to be what we all thought it’d be. It’s a high-riding Volkswagen Polo with some design elements culled from its big brother, the T-Roc.
2019 Volkswagen Tiguan PHEV/GTE
When Volkswagen debuted the second-generation Tiguan for the 2016 model year, it debuted alongside the Tiguan PHEV GTE Concept – a model that served as a preview for the upcoming Tiguan PHEV. Now, it looks like the production version of the Tiguan PHEV is about to make its debut as it was spotted with zero camo cruising around public streets. As you can see it’s not all that different from the standard Tiguan, but it does have its differences. If the concept is any representation of what we can expect, and it obviously is, the production model should deliver between 210 and 220 horsepower and offer up some 30 miles of all-electric range for those of you with a short commute.
2020 Volkswagen Van
Aside from the Type 1 Beetle, the Type 2 Bus is Volkswagen’s undisputed most widely recognized vehicle. Some might say it’s one of the most recognizable vehicles of all time. Much credit can be given to the Type 2’s social influences during the 1960s and 1970s in American pop culture thanks to the hippie movement. But sadly, Volkswagen has left the Bus and its classic styling to the pages of history.
Interestingly enough, the last Type 2 Bus, otherwise known as the T2 Kombi, rolled off the production line on December 31, 2013 in Sao Paulo. The Brazil-only model died at the hands of safety legislation mandating ABS and dual front airbags – changes Volkswagen was unwilling to make on a 63-year-old model. Other versions of the Bus existed, of course, changing names with each generation. The Type 2 Bus, or Microbus, Transporter, Kombi, or camper, depending on whom you ask, transformed into the Type 3, Type 4, and Type 5 in other parts of the world.
Starting in 2015, Volkswagen has been building the Type 6, known as the Transporter, in Germany. However, this van is modern in every sense of the word, with no cues hinting at its storied past. Rather, it’s just a forgettable van built to haul passengers or cargo that blends into the rolling European countryside.
American automakers, on the other hand, are busy building modern cars with retro cues, recalling glory days of moments forever past. That begs the question: what if Volkswagen did the same? What if Volkswagen built a special version of its Transporter that harked back to 1969 when shirts were tie-dyed, hair was long, love was free, war was bad, and Woodstock was the place to be?
We send those thoughts to our in-house rendering specialist to be constructed into form. It had to be modern – including all the safety technology of today – yet still capture the feel of the original Type 2. This is what he came up with.
Continue reading for the full review.
2018 Volkswagen Tiguan R
The Volkswagen Tiguan is in some ways, a trailblazer in its segment. As one of the first of the modern premium compact crossovers to hit the market in 2007, the Volkswagen Tiguan opened the door for many of its rivals. The intentions may have been pure, but the results were anything but. That’s because for better or worse, the Tiguan hasn’t been as dynamic as Volkswagen intended it to be. You might even say that the crossover has languished in the face of increased competition, partly due to VW’s decision to keep the Tiguan’s design muted for the better part of its existence.
Now it appears all that’s about to change. According to Autocar, Volkswagen is preparing an onslaught of new crossovers and SUVs, beginning in 2016. The Tiguan will play a prominent role in this renaissance of sorts. To make things more interesting, there’s also talk of a range-topping performance variant that will combine a new design language with the company’s renowned R performance engineering. Nothing has been made official at this point, but Volkswagen’s timetable for its Tiguan family points to a 2017 launch for the R-badged model.
It’s also not yet clear whether the R will be based on the standard Tiguan or feature a revised body. Initial rumors pointed toward a coupe-style crossover, likely dubbed Coupe R, but such a launch would imply additional development costs for the German brand. More recently, our paparazzi caught a beefed-up Tiguan wearing the standard roofline on the Nurburgring, which suggests that Volkswagen is sticking to the standard crossover configuration. The coupe is not completely out of the question as stranger things have happened within the Volkswagen Group, but for now, this prototype is the only thing we have.
Check it out in our speculative review below and stay tuner for updates.
Updated 10/21/2016: Our spy photographers caught the upcoming Tiguan R out for a first testing session at the Nürburgring.
Continue reading to learn more about the Volkswagen Tiguan R.
2019 Volkswagen Polo SUV
The idea of a Volkswagen Polo SUV has been making its way through the rumor mill for some time now. Then, at the 2016 Geneva Motor Show, we laid eyes on the 2016 Volkswagen T-Cross Breeze Concept. The T-Cross Breeze Concept debuted in drop-top form, but Volkswagen made it clear that the concept served as a teaser for its first compact SUV as well as a new design language that will found on future VW models.
We know Volkswagen has been working on the next-generation Polo, and there have been test mules hitting the streets wearing the best camo there is – the body of a different model. Specifically, the mules have been wearing the body of a three-door Volkswagen Golf. Our spy photographers have caught another mule masquerading as a three-door Golf, but upon closer inspection, we don’t think this is another Polo mule. Instead, this mule has a lifted suspension, which leads us to believe this is a test mule for the Polo SUV that will be based loosely on the T-Cross concept and sit below the Tiguan in Volkswagen’s SUV lineup.
Since this mule is pretending to be a Volkswagen Golf on stilts, we can’t look to it for many hints of what the future compact SUV will look like, but we still have a few things to talk about regarding this model. Until we get some shots of Polo SUV with its real body intact, let’s dive in and talk a little about what we expect.
Update 08/172016: The Volkswagen Polo SUV has finally been caught testing with a real body. It has lots of camo, but it does help give us an idea of what is to come. Check out the exterior section below to see the spy shots and learn all about it.
Continue reading to learn more about the Volkswagen Polo SUV.