Volkswagen Golf GTI is 45 years oldMay 19, 2020
German carmaker celebrates Golf GTI heritage.
Back in 1975, Volkswagen created the world’s first “hot” hatchback with a Golf GTI. After 45 years, the Golf GTI is still in production, and this year will be released a completely new model of the eighth generation. To celebrate the 45th anniversary of the Golf GTI and the upcoming launch of the new model, Volkswagen looks back at the legacy of the “charged” hatchback.
The first Golf GTI was unveiled at the Frankfurt International Motor Show in September 1975, and then was released in the summer of 1976. He was a pioneer in front-wheel drive compact sports cars as we know them today. Initially, only 5,000 units were planned, but 461,690 units of the Mk1 Golf GTI left the production lines.
The original Golf GTI, or “Sport Golf,” as it was originally called, was developed in secret by a dozen Volkswagen employees. The initial prototypes were equipped with a 100 horsepower carburetor engine, and in March 1975 the project was approved by the chairman of the VW board. A 110-horsepower fuel injection engine was installed in the production car, allowing the hot hatchback to reach a top speed of 181 km / h. In 1984, the second-generation Golf GTI continued the success of the original and retained some of the design features, such as a red stripe in the grille and checkered sports seats.
In 1984, power fell briefly to 107 hp. after stopping the catalytic converter. Two years later, Volkswagen made up for this loss of power with a new 16-valve 129-hp engine. An even more powerful G60 model with 160 hp was released in 1990.
The Golf GTI entered the third generation in 1991 with a new design that conceals double headlights in front behind common glass. Initially, the power of the Mk3 Golf began with 115 hp, but a year later it increased to 150 hp. thanks to the new 16-valve engine. A turbocharged diesel version of 110 hp was launched in 1996. and the anniversary model “20 Years GTI”.
The fourth generation Golf GTI was a departure from design, including characteristic cues such as a red stripe in the grille. Its gasoline engines, available with four or five cylinders, develop power up to 170 hp, while diesels – up to 150 hp. 180 Years GTI Special Edition Turbocharged came out in 2001.
In 2004, the fifth generation Golf GTI was launched with a sharper design, 200-horsepower turbo engine and outstanding handling. Design features include new Denver design wheels and a black V-shaped radiator grille. With a fifth-generation Golf GTI manual gearbox, it could accelerate to 100 km / h in just 7.2 seconds, and the new dual-clutch automatic transmission reduced acceleration time to 6.9 seconds. The maximum speed of 235 km / h at that time was very impressive for the “charged” hatchback. Another anniversary model celebrated its 30th anniversary in 2006 with a 230-hp model.
The sixth generation Golf GTI followed in 2009 for the first time with an electronic differential lock. With a top speed of 240 km / h, this GTI had a 210 hp turbocharged engine. He also received a new exhaust system and was first released as a convertible in 2011. VW celebrated its 35th anniversary with the Golf GTI Edition 35, with an increased power of 235 hp, acceleration of 0-100 km / h in 6.6 seconds and a top speed of 246 km / h.
For the first time, the seventh-generation GTI was launched with two engine options in 2013. The basic version provided 220 hp, while the Golf GTI Performance had 230 hp. and was the first Golf GTI to be equipped with electronically controlled limited-slip, torque-sensitive control and built on a modular transverse matrix. This new platform has reduced the weight of the GTI to 42 kg, making it more flexible.
With a manual gearbox, the 230-horsepower version could reach a top speed of 249 km / h. It spawned the track-oriented Golf GTI Clubsport, which provided power up to 290 hp. thanks to the overclocking function. “The first hundred” was reached in 5.9 seconds. A year later, the 310-horsepower Golf GTI Clubsport S broke the previous front-wheel drive record in the Nurburgring Nordschleife area, showing a time of 7 minutes and 49.21 seconds and reached a top speed of 264 km / h.
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