2015 Volkswagen Golf R Review

Golf R

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2015 Volkswagen Golf R Overview

Complete with a reworked engine, redesigned body, lightened chassis, technology options, and improved interior for 2015, the Golf R is an all-new version of the most impressive car Volkswagen has ever brought to the table. Volkswagen’s XDS system, which increases handling performance and was previously available only for the GTI, has become a standard feature for the hatchback this year as well.

A brand new color created exclusively for the Golf R, Lapis Blue Metallic, shines with azure beauty and can now be applied to the exterior. Adding distinctive flair, the new designs of the front bumper and grille give unmistakable recognizability.

Aggressiveness radiates from the newly widened, lengthened body and reshaped rims, and the novel smoky taillights add a bit of attitude to the formula. Not to be wasted, the added size also means more usable interior space. Finally, Volkswagen also emblazoned a noticeable U-shape into the design of the new LED headlights for even more personality.

Long trips are quiet and comfortable in the Golf R, and the reengineering of the turbocharged 2.0-liter engine delivers smooth, ready power on the go with as little lag as possible. German engineering has managed to squeeze a stunning 292 hp and 280 lb-ft of tire-smoking torque from this little 4-banger, which breathes in boosted air ravenously and expels it through the additional 2 chrome tailpipes. Expect mileage to run 23 mpg city/30 highway, which isn’t stellar, but a small price to pay to go from 0-60 in just a tick under 5 seconds.

Traversing roads with challenging topography, such as the streets of San Francisco or that ever-so-famous highway out of California, is a breeze in this 4-door. The acceleration right off the line from the smooth shifts of the 6-speed automatic transmission and the grip of the all-wheel-drive system is nothing short of breathtaking. The fine-tuned suspension absorbs road impurities effortlessly, and provides high-level stability in cornering. This is also good news for handling hazardous elements like rain and snow.

Even when the weather outside gets grim, the inside of the new Golf R stays as cozy as ever. Small redesigns here and slight touches there dot the interior, with plenty of soft-touch surfaces and leather to suit anyone’s palate. A notable new option is the 5.8-inch center console screen equipped with proximity sensors that cue the screen to life when a hand draws near. The Golf R provides abundant space for all passengers and still gives cargo space graciously to the tune of 52.7 cubic feet—30% more than last year.

2012 saw the introduction of the Golf R to U.S. customers and the dawn of a new flagship in the hatchback segment. Since then, this performance-enhanced, seventh generation Golf has risen to become highly awarded. It has the potential to tackle any type of driving engagement, including the act of shifting gears with a manual transmission (coming next year).

A steep price is the worst drawback of this car. And yes, the WRX and Lancer are more frugal and track-worthy, but German design is fabled for its meticulous attention to detail and pursuit of perfection.


Your prototypical "Tom Girl" Patricia got her start digging into Ford engines before she aged into double digits. Gifted with a mechanical mind, her favorite pass-time in the summer is picking up a fixer-up'r at the local public auction and massaging its every ailment until it's primed for a new lover. From dirt bikes to land yachts, every partner offers something truly special in her love affair with the road - just don't tell her husband.

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