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2017 VW Golf GTI & Golf R: Still Setting the Standard

Volkswagen is justifiably proud of its legendary Golf GTI and Golf R; after all these years, they continue to set the standard in the sports compact market. Who doesn’t appreciate the GTI and the R for their designs marked by distinctive visual signatures? Think of the red line crossing the GTI’s grille, or the famous ‘R’ badge…  

What’s more, their interiors are sterling examples of ergonomic design and quality finishing that seem to be the exclusive purview of German automakers like BMW and Audi. Behind the wheel of either of the VW models, in fact, it sometimes feels like it’s a TT you’re driving.

On the road, the VW Golf GTI and Golf R deliver the best of both worlds: a relaxing drive, mixed with inveterate sportiness and high-level performance marked by irreproachable braking, precise steering and remarkably agile suspension. The fact is, the driving pleasure they provide is difficult to find elsewhere.

Our contributing journalist Mathieu St-Pierre has nothing but great things to say about the GTI. As for the ultimate Golf, he finds it downright R-egal.

2017 Volkswagen Golf GTI
From $29,495 – Technical specifications

Pros

  • - Refined contours and remarkable design details
  • - Quality of construction
  • - Interior finish
  • - Driving position
  • - Weight-to-power ratio  
  • - Sporty road handling
  • - Excellent 6-speed manual and DSG transmissions

Cons

  • - High price point when fully equipped
  • - 220-hp engine only available in Performance version

2017 Volkswagen Golf R
From $40,695 – Technical specifications

Pros

  • - Unique personality
  • - Solidity of construction
  • - Superb interior with outstanding seats
  • - High-level performance (particularly in the Race version)
  • - Exceptional road handling (4MOTION)

Cons

  • - No 7-speed DSG box offered
  • - No sliding sunroof
  • - Not very accessible price-wise