Sunday, April 21, 2013
VW Golf GTD - a Genuinely Tantalising Diesel?
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 www.volkswagen.co.uk if you’re a grown-up boy racer frustrated by spiralling fuel prices.