German automaker Volkswagen just unveiled the most powerful version of its iconic Golf compact car ever to be offered for sale. The 2022 Golf R, which was unveiled Tuesday, sports a 315-horsepower engine and a newly redesigned look.
The top-of-the-line model will be coming with a 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine that is capable of generating 315 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque. The engine produces 27 horsepower more than its predecessor. The Golf R is the higher-spec version of the Golf GTI variant.
Volkswagen said that it will be making the 2022 Golf R available in the U.S. However, its base versions will only be available in Europe and other select markets. The company said that demand for smaller vehicles in the U.S. still remains low as most consumers in the country prefer crossovers and large SUVs.
The company believes that there will still be a market for the Golf R in the U.S., as some Americans do prefer small vehicles with overpowered engines and performance. Volkswagen said that the 2022 Golf R should become available in the U.S. during the second half of 2021. While it didn't specify pricing for the new model, the 2022 Golf R is expected to be priced similarly to the 2019 model, which started at over $40,000.
The Golf R, which Volkswagen claims can get to 62mph from a standstill in just 4.7 seconds, will be competing against similar hot hatches offered by Subaru and Honda. This includes Subaru's iconic WRX STI and Honda's Civic Type R, which are both ultra-performance versions of their fuel-efficient base models.
Apart from the powerful engine, Volkswagen said that it has equipped the new Golf R with an improved torque-vectoring all-wheel-drive system that automatically diverts power to different wheels as needed. This allows for tighter handling and better cornering when compared to the previous model.
Volkswagen has equipped the new Golf R with different driving modes that dynamically change settings such as throttle response, suspension, and steering. The drive modes include the typical Comfort, Sport, and Track, but the Golf R will come with a special mode that was designed to take on challenging tracks such as Germany's famous Nürburgring.
The vehicle will also come with a specialized Drift Mode, which drivers can choose to more easily get the car sideways if they want to. The Golf R will come with either a six-speed manual or a seven-speed automatic transmission.