New Volkswagen Golf R 20 Years unveiled as most powerful production Golf ever

Built to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Mk4 Golf R32, the new special edition boasts 328bhp and will be available to order for a limited time

Volkswagen has pulled the wraps off a new, hotter variant of the Golf R called the ‘20 Years edition’, designed to commemorate the birth of its R performance brand two decades ago. The V6-engined Golf R32 launched in 2002 as the fastest Golf ever put into production, and thanks to a power boost to 328bhp, that title is now held by the VW Golf R 20 Years.

The mechanicals are fundamentally the same as the R-Performance pack-equipped Golf R, with a 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine under the bonnet driving all-four wheels through a seven-speed dual clutch gearbox. However, Volkswagen has squeezed an extra 13bhp out of the motor, which features a new Emotion Start system that flares the revs to 2,500rpm on startup. 

The engine and gearbox have also been recalibrated, with the later offering more aggressive manual shifts in the sportier driving modes. The turbocharger is preloaded under part throttle, too, in order to provide more instantaneous thrust when it’s time to get back on the power. Volkswagen hasn’t released performance figures for the new model, but a marginal improvement over the standard car’s 4.7-second 0-62mph time could be expected.

The Golf R 20 Years is also equipped with the R-Performance pack as standard, which includes a torque vectoring rear differential and additional ‘Special’ and ‘Drift’ driving modes. A roof spoiler and a set of 19-inch alloy wheels also feature, along with a unique ‘20’ badge on the B-pillar and a ‘20 R’ puddle light when unlocking the car.

Inside, the Golf R 20 Years gets carbon fibre dashboard and door panel inserts, along with blue R branding on the steering wheel, sports seats and key fob. Volkswagen hasn’t released pricing details for the new special edition, but the car will be available until the middle of 2023 after it goes on sale this year.

Read our full review of the 2022 Volkswagen Golf R Estate...

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