Volkswagen Golf GTI
Volkswagen Golf GTI
Volkswagen Golf GTI

2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI

Pros: Outstanding balance between invigorating performance and day-to-day practicality; impressive refinement; cargo versatility of hatchback body style; decent fuel economy

Cons: Top-end models get rather pricey; automated-manual transmission’s behavior feels odd to some drivers; rear roof pillars are a bit thick, blocking the view to the corners

CG Says: The 2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI replaces its optional 6-speed automated-manual transmission with a 7-speed automated-manual and the turbo four gains gains eight horsepower for a total of 228. All models now have a limited-slip differential and upgraded brakes from the Golf R. A new Rabbit Edition with unique trim slots between the S and SE models. The Volkswagen Golf GTI is the sporty “hot-hatch” performance version of VW’s Golf lineup. It comes standard with a 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder. All models are front-wheel drive and offer a choice of a 6-speed manual or 7-speed automated-manual transmission. An adaptive suspension is a performance option. Available safety features include standard adaptive cruise control, blind-spot alert, rear-traffic alert, pedestrian detection, forward-collision warning, and autonomous emergency braking. The Golf GTI is an impressive car that upholds this time-honored nameplate’s status as a benchmark among performance-focused sporty hatchbacks. What the GTI might lack in outright horsepower compared to others in the Sporty/Performance Car category, it more than makes up for in terms of sprightly handling, surprising practicality, and a high level of refinement. It’s simply one of the best vehicles in its class.

The Facts
Class Sporty/Performance Car
Body Style(s) 4-door hatchback
Passenger Count 5
Drive Wheels front-wheel drive
Manufacturer Volkswagen
Nation of Manufacture Germany
Base Prices S: $28,490
Rabbit Edition: $29,790
SE: $32,690
Autobahn: $36,890

Base Engine
turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder
Horsepower
228
Std. Transmission
6-speed manual
Avail. Transmission
7-speed automated-manual
EPA City Range (mpg)
24-25
EPA Hwy Range (mpg)
31-32