Sunday, June 23, 2024

2025 Volkswagen Golf R Breaks Cover As BMW M135 Rival

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BMW introduced the M135 a week ago and it’s already facing stiff competition coming from the new Volkswagen Golf R. Unlike Bavaria’s hot hatch, Wolfsburg’s compact performance model has had its US visa approved. In Europe, VW will continue to sell a more practical wagon version for which the M division sadly doesn’t have a direct competitor.

With the mid-cycle update, the Golf R relies on an uprated turbocharged 2.0-liter gasoline engine massaged for slightly more power. The four-cylinder TSI unit now produces an additional 14 hp, bringing the grand total to 329 hp. Torque remains unchanged, at 420 Nm (310 lb-ft). However, the pre-facelift model was rated in the United States at a slightly lower 400 Nm (295 lb-ft). Details about the US-spec 2025 Golf R have yet to be released.

How does the revised Golf R stack up against the M135? BMW’s M Performance 1 Series has 296 hp in Europe and 312 hp in countries with more relaxed emissions regulations. Either way, it’s weaker than its domestic rival. Torque is always 400 Nm (295 lb-ft), which is once again less than the VW. The Golf R used to come with a manual in the US before the facelift but not anymore. Going forward, it’s going to be sold strictly with a seven-speed DSG. The M135 also has a dual-clutch automatic with the same number of gears.

VW quotes a 0 to 62 mph (100 km/h) sprint of 4.6 seconds for the hatchback, making it 0.3s quicker than the M135. The more spacious wagon takes 4.8 seconds to complete the task because of its slightly higher curb weight. An optional Performance Package loosens up the top speed limiter, unlocking 168 mph (270 km/h). The new BMW M135 maxes out at a lower 155 mph (250 km/h), matching the standard Golf R.

The 2025 Golf R hatch and estate are still camouflaged for some reason. However, we do know the cars inherit the subtle styling updates brought by the Golf Mk8.5 earlier this year. VW adds an optional 19-inch forged wheel set, shaving off 20% of fat compared to the standard alloys. New for 2025 is also a Black Edition with dark accents for a murdered-out look.

VW isn’t willing to show the interior just yet. However, we’ve learned the dashboard has been modified to accommodate an enlarged 12.9-inch touchscreen. Moreover, the touch slider for the volume and temperature control is finally illuminated. At an additional cost, the Golf R can be configured with a head-up display. The fully digital 10.2-inch instrument cluster is standard.

Shell out more money and VW will equip the new Golf R with an Akrapovič titanium exhaust system that has a deeper soundtrack than before. Much like the standard setup, the upgraded hardware comes with controllable sound flaps. With the updated model, there’s now an option for advanced matrix LED headlights with a 15% more powerful high beam.

The fastest production VW ever will be available to preorder in Europe this month to coincide with the Golf’s 50th anniversary. Its global rollout will follow shortly. We might be dealing with one of the last updates for the R in the combustion-engine era since the Golf Mk9 will be an EV. That’s provided VW doesn’t change its mind after so-so sales of electric cars…

Source: Volkswagen

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