2014 Volkswagen Golf GTD Diesel Hot Hatch Returns 50+ MPG

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Following yesterday’s leak of the new e-Golf electric variant of Volkswagen’s latest MkVII Golf, comes the first photos and specs for the latest Golf GTD diesel-powered hot hatch.

Volkswagen has been offering high-performance Golf diesels since 1982, but so far none have ever been offered in the U.S. market.

We’re hoping that will change with the arrival of the new MkVII Golf GTD, which makes its debut next month at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show, though we’re not holding our breath just yet.

Volkswagen is reported to be seriously considering the possibility of a local launch, though nothing has been confirmed yet.

So what improvements does the MkVII Golf GTD bring over the outgoing MkVI model? Many.

Starting with its platform, the new Golf GTD benefits from all the advantages of the Volkswagen Group’s flexible MQB architecture. This means it’s roomier, lighter (to the tune of 220 pounds), more powerful and even more efficient than the model it replaces. We’d also argue it’s also considerably better looking.

The MkVII Golf GTD features a new EA288 TDI turbodiesel engine, which is rated at 184 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque. The 2.0-liter engine delivers its peak torque from as little as 1,750 rpm, which should make the GTD very eager around town and possibly quicker off the line than some much more powerful cars.

Volkswagen says it’s enough to accelerate the car to 60 from rest in around 7.5 seconds and see it reach a top speed of 143 mph. By comparison, the MkVI model only puts out 168 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque.

The engine also meets the latest EU-6 emissions standard and when matched with a six-speed manual transmission will return up to 56 mpg on the European combined cycle. U.S. tests are a bit harsher, though EPA testing should still see the car deliver well in excess of 40 mpg combined. Interestingly, the good ol’ manual is more efficient than the optional six-speed DSG dual-clutch ‘box.

Being a hot hatch, the car also gets a sporty body kit, 17-inch alloy wheels, lowered suspension and chrome-tipped exhausts. The cabin also gets sports seats with GTI-inspired tartan trim, a sports steering wheel and metal pedals.

The car goes on sale in Europe this summer, following its official debut in Geneva on March 5. For our complete coverage of the upcoming event, click here for our dedicated show hub.


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Comments (4)
  1. Excited by the misleading title. Disappointed by the truth in the content. What 50+ MPG?

  2. "though EPA testing should still see the car deliver well in excess of 40 mpg combined."
    = meaning ice vehicles always get lower city mpg n therefore this new vw golf, w/ manual trans, will likely get 50+mpg hwy on the USA cycle to compensate for the likley low 30s city mpg.

    Yes still a incomplete n some would say misleading article title but for hwy mpg in the US, 50+ seems very likely. Lets hope VW sells it here.

  3. “56 mpg on the European combined cycle”

    It appears he meant European cycle. However, readers here would assume the title is talking about EPA or estimated EPA when they first glance it.

    Yes, we all know TDIs are able to achieve 50+ MPG on highway without sacrificing any pleasure of driving. It is amazing. I would buy a Passat TDI soon if I can build enough confidence on its reliability. It is still too new to tell though.

  4. The GTD can probably be had in the USA for the very determined. California dictates what the manufacturers import or don't import. The GTD probably passes EPA emissions right now but can't pass CARB laws. VW will provide documentation as to whether the car complies with emission requirements or not. The persistent could probably import it themselves and register it anywhere in the country except CA. A good alternative to holding one's breath and waiting for VW to make up its mind.

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