Sunday, April 21, 2013

VW Golf GTD - a Genuinely Tantalising Diesel?

IF you’re the sort of driver who wants hot hatch thrills without the annoyingly frequent stops to fill up then this new Golf could be a great contender for your cash.

VW are wryly saying the GTD badge on this latest version stands for Genuinely Tantalising Diesel and it’s easy to see where they’re coming from, because this £25,285 model offers up the same sort of punch and poise as its petrol-fuelled GTI cousin, but with an extra helping of economy thanks to it using a 2.0 litre turbodiesel engine.

Admittedly it’s not as fast as a Golf GTI – the dash from 0 to 60mph takes a second longer and the top speed is 142mph to the GTI’s 153mph – but you get more torque for when you’re overtaking, and more miles for your gallon when you’re not. Go-faster family hatches which fill up at the black pumps aren't exactly a new idea either - VW's sister brand Skoda, in particular, has carved itself a bit of niche when its Fabia vRS intially came along as an exclusively diesel-propelled pocket rocket.

With petrol prices forever threatening to surge past £1.40 a litre the torquey thump you get with diesels is becoming ever more tempting. Sure, you won't get the soundtrack or the rev-happy playfulness of the GTI, but you get mid-range wallop and the smugness of knowing you're winning on the economy front.

The Golf GTD, which commands a £310 premium over its predecessor, arrives in the UK later this year but is available to order now. Go to VW’s website at if you’re a grown-up boy racer frustrated by spiralling fuel prices.

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