New car debrief: Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport S, CAR+ June 2016

Published: 01 May 2016

► New Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport S revealed
► Packs a 305bhp 2.0-litre turbocharged engine
► Stole the FWD Nürburgring record from Honda

1) Happy birthday – the Golf GTI is 40 years old, and to celebrate VW has pulled out all of the stops and lit the fuse on the detonator. The resulting GTI Clubsport S has claimed the Nürburgring fwd lap record with a time of 7min 49:21sec, over 5sec faster than the Renaultsport Megane Trophy-R and over 1sec faster than the Civic Type R.

2) Max power – to achieve this, VW has boosted the 2.0-litre turbo to a permanent 305bhp and 280lb ft – up from the 290bhp the regular Clubsport makes on overboost.

3) If it’s not nailed down – unladen weight is also reduced to 1285kg, via ejection of the rear seats, parcel shelf, variable boot floor, mats, bonnet lifters and some sound insulation. The front subframe is now aluminium, lightweight brakes help save 1kg a corner, and it comes as a 3dr only.

4) ‘Ring ‘Ring – there’s also a special Nürburgring driving mode, tuned for the circuit. Adaptive dampers are standard, but you can only have a manual gearbox. Just 400 will be built worldwide; expect to pay around £35k.

Read more from the June 2016 issue of CAR magazine

By CJ Hubbard

Former CAR magazine associate editor, road tester, organiser, extremely variable average wheel count