First Impressions: 2022 Golf GTI & Golf R Line, now assembled in Malaysia

Tom

TIMETOATTACK
Helmet Clan

Tom

TIMETOATTACK
Helmet Clan
Jul 6, 2000
5,553
3,223
5,213
Kuala Lumpur


VW'S MK8 Golf GTI finally arrives, alongside the 1.4TSI R-Line and what's more, they are both assembled right here in Malaysia. This is the first time they're doing the GTI outside of Germany and China. So that's quite substantial. Potentially easier on the wallet for local buyers, also more confidence inspiring in a way.





Golf GTI: 6.5 secs / 245ps / 370nm / 2L 4cyl turbo / 7 speed DSG / RM211,689.00

Golf R Line: 8.5 secs / 150ps / 250nm / 1.4L 4 cylinder turbo / 8 speed auto / RM155,000.00 - 165,000.00



VPCM, VW Passenger Cars Malaysia debuted the Golf duo at Sepang Circuit which included a brief drive. Here are some quick first impressions:

Golf GTI:

- Big change in cockpit, futuristic, feels foreign, steep learning curve to operate the glass like touch buttons. Still feels like an upgrade overall.
- Microscopic shift lever is tiny, almost comical for the role it plays. Imagine having a flick switch for selecting R/N/D.
- Familiar EA888 2L turbo evolved to the max, super refined 4 cylinder, commendable creamy smooth delivery, a touch more immediate maybe, flat torque as usual.
- 7 speed DSG. Again, unfaultable, same old quick and exquisite.
- Makes good sound. Induction and exhaust was pretty audible from the cockpit, possibly digitised, it's hard to tell
- Traction control was surprisingly strict this time around, quick to intervene, bogging the car down excessively even in sport mode.
- Perhaps there are other more encouraging modes to explore, but drive time was limited
- It drives like it's got a bigger overall footprint of a 3 series but at the same time moves with a poise and lightness of a hot hatch.
- Youngest of the GTI bloodline, yet most mature in overall physique and demeanour.
- It's like the usually ripped, 21 year old GTI has now turned dadbod 30 with the MK8
- Big change in cockpit, futuristic, feels foreign, steep learning curve to operate the glass like touch buttons. Still an upgrade overall.
- Microscopic shift lever is tiny, almost comical for the role it plays. Imagine having a flick switch for selecting R/N/D.
- Familiar EA888 2L turbo evolved to the max, super refined 4 cylinder, commendable creamy smooth delivery, a touch more immediate maybe, flat torque as usual.
- 7 speed DSG. Again, unfaultable, same old quick and exquisite.
- Makes good sound. Induction and exhaust was pretty audible from the cockpit, possibly digitised, it's hard to tell but does compliment the GTI.
- Traction control was surprisingly strict this time around, like when approaching turn 9, quick to intervene at any hint of slip, bogs the car down excessively for a moment like a punishment.
- Perhaps there are other more encouraging driving modes to select, such as via the touchscreen, but drive time was rather brief to explore.
- It drives like it's got a bigger overall footprint of say a 3 series but at the same time moves with poise and lightness of a hot hatch.
- Youngest of the GTI bloodline, yet most mature in overall physique and demeanour.
- It's like the usually ripped, 21 year old GTI has now turned dadbod 30 with the new MK8





Golf R-Line:

- This is literally the TSI 1.4L Turbo most people are familiar with.
- Much more than just an entry level golf, well presented all round, an improvement over the 1.4T variant from before.
- New body may be a tad mundane for the GTI, but definitely an upgrade for the R Line variant.
- Hexagonal motif seats are a nice touch
-150ps 1.4T drives exactly as advertised. Positive engine response, smooth, refined. Has good pace, not for drag race.
- New 8 speed Aisin auto feels almost as good as the 7 DSG GTI. Quick too, but no fireworks here. It drives like an auto would.
- Admittedly an enjoyable experience despite being a basic Golf. Well put together, feels like a grown up hatch.



Erik Winter, Managing Director of VPCM, expressed his excitement at introducing the eighth generation GTI. “The GTI is certainly the most iconic three letters in the automotive industry. It has amassed loyal fans globally, and more so in Malaysia where we have a very passionate fanbase. We are proud that we are now rolling it out from our Pekan plant – a historical milestone, really. The new GTI is full of innovation, and we are sure that it too will set new standards and thrill our customers.”



VPCM provides aftersales care through three years free maintenance, five years unlimited mileage warranty, and five years roadside assistance























 
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