According to Autocar.co.uk, Volkswagen is planning to launch three all-new performance VW Golf variants within the next three years.
(1) A performance diesel Golf – dubbed the GTD - is scheduled for launch in the spring of 2009. It will use the VW Group’s latest twin-turbocharged 2.0-litre TDI engine, offering in excess of 200bhp and 260lb ft torque.
(2) VW is also looking at a Golf GTI 'plus' model. This harder-core version of the GTI will use a tuned version of the standard car’s 2.0-litre TSI engine to deliver up to 270bhp. It will also have a seven-speed DSG gearbox and a Haldex clutch providing non-permanent four-wheel-drive.
This GTI 'plus' will replace the current-generation R32, although it also looks set to come close to entering the territory already occupied by sister company Audi’s S3.
(3) The final new performance Golf is likely to be another 'R' variant, possibly the 'R42', which is pencilled in for a 2010 launch. This will use a 2.5-litre turbocharged five-cylinder engine that will be shared with the forthcoming Audi TT RS, giving the Golf around 350bhp along with competitive fuel economy and CO2 figures.
According to Volkswagen insiders the spate of new high performance Golfs has been brought about by an influx of Audi engineers into Volkswagen, and a move to bring about more component sharing between the two companies.