Turning 40 always deserves a celebration. And Volkswagen will do so with the Golf GTI with a race version of it, the Golf GTI TCR. Developed by Seat, which already has the Leon Cup Racer, and Volkswagen Motorsports, the car has the same 2.0 TSI 4-cylinder engine of the GTI, but with an improved output: 243 kW and 409 Nm. And that comes with a much lighter body than the Golf R, the car in which it is based.
While the R weighs 1,489 kg in its manual version, the Golf GTI TCR weighs 1,200 kg. Its interior has a roll cage and one racing seat. The car is equipped with a 6-speed sequential racing transmission with paddle shifters behind the steering wheel. The car is front-wheel drive, like the production version, but counts on a suspension that allows for the adjustment of height, track and camber. It uses 18-inch racing wheels, with Michelin tires, and is stopped by 362 mm ventilated disc brakes at the front axle and 310 mm ventilated disc brakes at the rear. The brake calipers are made of aluminum.
The standard suspension setup is 40 mm wider than the one used by the stock Golf GTI. The car also counts on an aerodynamic package that allows it to have more downforce both at the front and the rear.
With these adjustments, the Golf GTI TCR is able to accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in 5.2 s and to reach a top speed of 230 km/h, due to the aerodynamic package, which improves downforce, but restricts top speed.
Only 20 of these babies will be produced and all of them have already been sold to racing teams. Since Volkswagen is celebrating 40 years of the GTI, it should produce 40 units of the Golf GTI TCR, shouldn’t it? Anyway, this is all there will be.
The cars will compete in the 2016 TCR series, which will hold its first race in March, as a support race for the F1 Bahrain Grand Prix.