Wolfsburg: VW planned to unveil the eight-generation GTI at the cancelled due-to-health-concerns Geneva Motor Show. The hybrid (GTE) and diesel (GTD) siblings were going to join it. According to VW’s press release, the GTI in European dress gets a 245-hp output version of a 2.0-liter EA888 evo4 turbocharged engine. Torque output climbs to 273 pound-feet. A six-speed manual is standard; a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox is optional.
LED headlights reside low on the car’s face. Front Assist, Lane Assist with keeping system, XDS electronic differential lock and Car2X (vehicle-to-vehicle communication) are standard. So is a 30-color choice interior background lighting for dash panel, door trim, storage compartment and footwell. A Digital Cockpit and a 10-inch infotainment screen complete the package.
VW says the GTI features a new driving dynamics control known as the Vehicle Dynamics Manager.
VW confirms we’ll get a U.S. spec GTI. The other two sporty Golf models sound interesting too: the plug-in hybrid GTE has a combined output of 245 hp with all-electric range of 37 miles. It sustains speeds up to 81 mph in EV mode. The GTD has a 200-hp diesel mill with advanced emissions system said to greatly reduce nitrogen oxide emissions. It comes with a dual-clutch gearbox.
Chicago: VW’s marketing ace Saad Chehab’s sandbox–VW’s Baja experience ride at the Chicago Auto Show–hit paydirt. VW says 15,630 adults rode Cross Sports driven by professional drivers on its indoor track. Expect a similar attraction at the upcoming New York show.