This Volkswagen Golf may look like a tuned GTI from German racing team Wiechers Sport. But we suspect that underneath the GTI-badged body is the more extreme version of the Golf R we reported on in January.
Spotted near the Nurburgring under escort from two VW support vehicles, these spy shots provide several clues that the car seen here is actually the stripped-out hot-hatch an insider tipped will debut at the Beijing Motor Show next month April.
As you can see, a roll cage has been added, one of the lightweight techniques reportedly designed to slash the standard R’s 1,476kg kerbweight. The car has also been equipped with a lowered suspension, a massive rear spoiler and – rather suggestively – seats from the Golf R.
The lighter, even more powerful hot hatch, expected to be called the Golf R Evo, will make use of a carbon-fibre roof and sections of carbon-fibre bodywork to cut 100kg. Thinner bucket seats in the front, no rear seats and the addition of lighter alloys are further weight-saving measures targeted at securing gains in performance.
When combined with a slightly tuned version of the Golf R’s 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine, which currently generates 296bhp and 380Nm, a four-wheel drive Golf R Evo fitted with six-speed DSG should manage 0-62mph in around 4.6 seconds.
Presented as a concept car initially, a production model could go on sale early next year, priced slightly above the standard Golf R, which starts at £29,900.