By on September 28, 2012

 

Yesterday’s coverage was fairly snarky, for the simple reason that none of the product was particularly compelling or exciting. But I love the look of the new VW GTI, especially in this blue hue. In my senior year of high school, my father bought a 2006 Jetta 2.0T with the DSG gearbox; it might be one of the all-time great sleepers, with just enough power to be fun in the city, but not enough to get you in serious trouble. Even on mundane all-season tires, it was one of the better FWD platforms I’ve ever driven. I can’t imagine how much fun the new GTI will be with more power and 200 fewer lbs.

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27 Comments on “Volkswagen GTI MK 7 – Best In Show So Far?: Paris 2012 Live Shots...”


  • avatar
    Advance_92

    Have the windows shrunk on this new generation? The proportions look a little off in some way between the wheels, windows, and body.

  • avatar
    dolorean

    I for one, love the Mk VII GTi as I do the Golf line. However, will not back down of my total want and desire of a Scirocco GT for the states. I find it intriguing that VW continues to provide the GTi, R32, and Turbo Beetles yet claims there is no market for a upscale sport hatch on the other side of the pond.

    • 0 avatar
      snakebit

      Notice, also, no Celica’s or Preludes, and the Mitsu Eclipse is officially gone. Maybe you and I still dig them, but their time is, at least temporarily, past.

      To be fair to VW, about two years ago, they did consider bringing the then-current Scirocco to the States, and then had a change of heart.

      As for the nationality of the current Golf, GTI, R, and their previous versions(like the last Rabbit), those do come from West Germany, and the Jetta and Beetle are assembled in Mexico. Check the first digit on your VIN. If it’s a ‘W’, it’s German, if it’s a ’3′, it’s put together in Mexico. (’1′ is US, ’2′ is Canadian, ’4′ sometimes gets used for either Australia or Kentucky(Don’t ask, don’t know), ‘S’ is for the UK. Those are the only ones I know.

      • 0 avatar
        th009

        ‘S’ can actually be either UK or Germany — see here:
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vehicle_Identification_Number#World_Manufacturer_Identifier

        Australia should be ’6′, Brazil is ’93′-’99′ and ’9A’-’9E’.

  • avatar
    dts187

    Wow. That looks great in blue. I’m beginning to think I may try and work something out with the dealer to trade in my Mk6

  • avatar
    photog02

    Well, at least the comparisons between this and the BMW “Active Tourer” will be interesting. VW has quite a history here, but BMW has shown with MINI that it can make a good FWD car.

  • avatar
    dougjp

    I have a 2006 Jetta 2.0T with DSG, and agree its one of the true “sleepers”.

    In comparison, the new GTi will be even more exciting. According to KBB, the 2006 Jetta weighs 3,259 lbs. and the current GTi in 4 door form is 146 lbs. less. The new GTi is supposed to improve 220 lbs. = 366 lbs. less. Should be very impressive indeed.

  • avatar
    hreardon

    Very handsome car; A nice evolution over the MkVI. My only complaint is that I’m not quite sold on the red stripe through the headlamps, but otherwise this puppy is ready for purchase.

  • avatar
    ezeolla

    My dad also bought a Jetta 2.0T with the DSG trans in 2006 (during the summer between when I graduated from high school and started my freshman year of college) and it was a ton of fun to drive around.

    My only problem with it (other than the lack of a clutch pedal (he has a bad knee and has had surgury on both of his shoulders so a manual trans was out of the question)) was how heavy the steering was. At the time, I was driving a 98 Blazer and then the next year moved on to an 07 Mazda3 and couldn’t believe how heavy his steering wheel was.

    In my time now as a valet, I have driven a few newer Jettas, but none with the 2.0T. None of the ones I have driven have had the same weighting his did (nor did my fiancee’s 03 2.0 Jetta).

    Was this something to do with some kind of sport tuning for the turbo models? I have always wondering about this

  • avatar
    mnm4ever

    I do love my GTI as well, but this new one is kinda “meh”. It barely looks different from the Mk6, which barely looked different from the Mk5. A 200 lb weight reduction IS nice, I just don’t think its enough to justify a trade, especially at the current price levels and option packages.

    But I agree, I love this blue color, previously only available on the R model. If they offer it on the regular GTI I bet you see a lot of them.

  • avatar
    LeeK

    As a life-long GTI fan (owned a Mk I, V, and now a VI), this new Mk VII pushes all my buttons. More power, less weight, excellent interior, hatchback practicality — what’s not to like?

  • avatar
    MR2turbo4evr

    I really dislike VW, but wow, what a beautiful car.

  • avatar
    Ubermensch

    I am 90% sure that I will be picking one of these up next fall when they go on sale. Hopefully in that blue or another actual color.

  • avatar
    slance66

    Any chance we can get a German built one stateside? If not, what is the expectation, in the shop, 1, 2 or 3 months of the year? I’m just not sold on Mexican VWs, and the VW dealers I’ve been to have all been lousy.

    • 0 avatar
      Ubermensch

      All of the U.S. GTIs up to this point have been German built, no reason to think it will be different this time. As to reliability, it’s anyone’s guess but reliability has been more or less improving for VW. My last VW experience was terrible but I am willing to give them another chance.

      • 0 avatar
        snakebit

        We have an ’06 Rabbit/Golf in the family, and with the exception of having to replace the ignition lock because it just failed all of sudden, and constantly having to replace the heater blower resister every three months, we love the car, and would buy the current replacement model, when we’re ready to turn in the Rabbit. The pictures of the new GTI make it look like a sweet ride.

      • 0 avatar
        gumbypiz

        Um, I had a 2001 Mk 4 GTI that was made in Brazil (GTI/GLX -VR6), in addition the first US GTI’s (Rabbits) were from Westmoreland, PA. So I don’t think all US GTI were German made…

      • 0 avatar
        th009

        Up to 1989 the Mk1/Mk2 GTIs were built in the US, then from 1990 Mk2/Mk3 in Mexico, the Mk4 in Brazil. Mk5/Mk6 have come from Germany.

        My money is on manufacturing in Mexico for the Mk7, but there has been no real info on that yet.

    • 0 avatar
      LeeK

      My 2007 Mark V was flawless. Traded it in on an 08 R32. My 2010 Mark VI has been very good, only going back to the dealer twice for a TPMS reset — an annoyance more than anything else. These cars are reliable. All GTIs sold in the US are made in Germany.

  • avatar
    FromaBuick6

    It’ll be interesting to see how VW equips the next Golf/GTI in the U.S. Since the Jetta regained some content for 2013 (power seat recliners, soft touch dash on more models, etc), I imagine it’ll be spec’ed out the same or better than the MkVI.

    • 0 avatar
      hreardon

      Volkswagen has stated that their intention is to *not* de-content the Golf/GTI as they have in the past. With the efficiencies gained by MQB we can hope that Volkswagen of America brings them over the pond more or less intact.

      Asked to venture a guess and I would tell you that the US will *not* get the power pack or drive-select functionality, nor the side-lane departure or radar-cruise control that you can get on the Eurospec models.

      There have also been discussions about assembling Golfs at the Chattanooga plant, though I would suspect that won’t happen until the American Passat moves to MQB in its next generation.

  • avatar
    redav

    I’m sure it’s a great drive, but the looks do nothing for me. It’s far blander and worse looking than any Toyota.

  • avatar
    otaku

    Well, it still looks like a refrigerator with wheels. That’s the important thing, I guess…

  • avatar
    Disaster

    Not really a fan of the huge fake (I assume) slotted brake intakes in the lower front grill. Do like that it hasn’t adopted the big mouth grill that so many new cars are sporting. Two tone side mirrors don’t add anything either.

  • avatar
    BMWnut

    I used to be a real VW Golf anorak back in the eighties and nineties. Then my VR6 found endless ways to fleece me and I have never been back to a VW dealer again. These days I find it hard to tell the Mark V, VI and VII apart. But that is just me. Looking at the VW sales figures, they are doing just fine without me as as a fanboi.


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