By now, majority of us should be familiar with the entire line up of the seventh generation Volkswagen Golf. Over the past eight months, Volkswagen has introduced the American audience to every Golf model ranging from the base 1.8 TSI to the range topping Golf R (and it also includes the various derivatives like the Sportwagen and the Alltrack). This week at the Los Angles International Auto Show, Volkswagen has introduced another Golf model to the entire world and this time around, it is the most rumored model in the entire line up, the Golf R Variant (German speak for Golf R Wagon).
In case you have not heard of the Golf R Variant yet, do not worry too much because a simple search on Google should pop up more than a million results for this amazing compact wagon from Germany’s largest automaker. The Golf R Variant is based on the standard Golf R hatchback, which can be had in either a three or five door version worldwide (now, U.S. only gets the five door model and a three door model could be added in the future). So, this means that the Golf R Variant comes standard with a 2.0 L turbocharged inline four engine strong enough to produce 296 horsepower and 280 pound foot of torque. Unlike the hatchback, the wagon version of the Golf R only comes with a six speed DSG transmission (the hatchback comes standard with a six speed manual and a six speed DSG transmission as a $1,100 option). Power from the engine is routed to all four wheels via the fifth generation of the Haldex clutch which is tuned to send 60 percent of the power to the rear wheels during heavy acceleration. While cruising or when the throttle is not smashed to the floor panel, the Haldex clutch decouple the rear axle and operates as a front wheel drive model to improve the fuel efficiency. Speaking of acceleration, Volkswagen claims that the Golf R Variant can hit 62 mph from 0 in 5.1 seconds and can reach a top speed of Governor restricted 155 mph.
Like the rest of the seventh generation Golf, the R Variant is based on Volkswagen’s new MQB chassis, which uses a lot of aluminium components to cut the overall weight of the vehicle. This results in better power to weight ratio and enables the Golf R Variant to accelerate quicker than the sixth generation Golf R, which was only offered as a hatchback worldwide. Thanks to its new chassis, the Golf R Variant and the regular Golf R hatchback receive a lot of driver assistance options like the Dynamic Chassis Control, which provides the driver with five unique driving modes which include ECO, Normal, Comfort, Individual and Race. Based on the selected mode, the Golf R’s chassis responds differently to the driver’s inputs. For daily use, select the Comfort mode, as it provides the most relaxed driving feel and eases up the power delivery and chassis response. However, if you wish to take your uber wagon to the racetrack and log some hard laps, select the Race mode as it completely turns off the traction and stability system and gives the full control to the driver. By selecting this mode, the engine, transmission and the overall chassis response sharpens, allowing the driver to hang his wagon on the jagged edge.
European consumers can experience everything the Golf R Variant has to offer starting in the Spring of 2015. Even though the Golf R Variant debuted at the Los Angles International Auto Show, Volkswagen has not hinted at any possibilities of selling the Variant in the U.S. But, all is not lost because staring next year, the Golf R hatchback will be available for American consumption. If you want to see the Golf R Variant on American roads, let Volkswagen of America know during the Auto Show because if the company sees a large enough market here, they might be persuaded to import this compact wagon from Germany for our consumption (fingers crossed!). Until then, checkout the images posted below of this cool Variant or Wagon or whatever you feel more comfortable calling it.
Images sourced from Volkswagen USA and CAR&DRIVER