Sixth Sense: the new Golf GTi arrives

Cars

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Hot off the wires comes the new that the latest manifestation of the legend that is the Volkswagen Golf GTi has been released and is available to order from dealers today for an on-sale date of 22 May 2009.

The GTi is and was, of course, the original hot hatch and has manifest more automotive dreams amongst young and enthusiastic drivers than any other car of the last 34 years. In 1975 the original Golf GTI design (by Influx hero Giorgetto Giugiaro), was unveiled at Frankfurt Motor Show.

The MK1 had a top speed of 113 mph and could accelerate to 62 mph in 9.0 seconds with an urban fuel efficiency of 35 MPG. The MK6 which looks at first glance very similar to the MK5 it replaces, boasts a top-end of 149 mph, a pull away time of 7.2 seconds and a combined economy of 38.1 mpg.

There are a bunch of mechanical evolutions to the power unit and the running gear encoded into the new model. VW promises that not only is this the most powerful GTi ever (210 PS) – with a raft of innovative electronica working the handling systems, it is set to be the crispest too.

The mechanical changes are joined by subtle cosmetic additions. The basis of the new GTi is the chassis structure of the new Mk VI Golf, onto which is added an aggressive new front bumper. This features a deep honeycomb airdam framed by vertical fog lights which sit below a new grille element adorned by the GTI badge. Sweeping horizontal lines make the new car appear lower than it really is _ but in actuality the new GTI is 27 mm wider than the car it replaces.

At the rear, a diffuser is located between an all-new exhaust system with separated tailpipes to lower further the stance of the car. A subtle rear wing sits above a pair of smoked rear light lenses and a single ‘GTI’ badge.

VW raised the bar when it launched the Mk5. Only time will tell if they will improve upon hot hatch perfection

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