2012 Volkswagen Golf R review, specifications, photos, features

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The new 2012 Volkswagen Golf R high-performance hatchback

The Golf R will go on sale in early 2012, and features a high-output version of Volkswagen's 2.0-liter, turbocharged four-cylinder FSI® engine, making 256 horsepower and 243 pound-feet of torque.

2012 Volkswagen Golf R photo2012 Volkswagen Golf R photo

There will be just one transmission option: a six-speed manual. Drive is taken to all four wheels through a fourth-generation Haldex® system.

2012 Volkswagen Golf R photo2012 Volkswagen Golf R photo

In keeping with the R's mission as a performance flagship for the VW brand, the vehicle is equipped with a sport-tuned suspension, upgraded brakes, and unique 18-inch wheels. Even the Electronic Stability Control system has been re-tuned for a sportier driving experience.

2012 Volkswagen Golf R photo -2012 Volkswagen Golf R photo -

With a predicted weight of 3325 pounds for the two-door model, distributed 60 percent up front, it’s estimated that the Golf R will sprint from 0 to 60 mph in less than six seconds.

2012 Volkswagen Golf R photo2012 Volkswagen Golf R photo

Top speed will be electronically limited to 130 mph. The fuel economy is predicted to be excellent for such a sporting car, with 19 mpg in the city and 27 mpg on the highway.

2012 Volkswagen Golf R photo2012 Volkswagen Golf R photo

The Golf R will be available in both two- and four-door forms, the first time in the U.S. for a Golf R model. The car signals its sporting intent with a number of interior and exterior enhancements. The front bumper has a motorsport look, there’s a high-gloss black radiator grille and dramatic LED DRLs are integrated into the Bi-Xenon headlights. Gloss-black-painted brake calipers nestle behind stylish new 18-inch aluminum-alloy wheels. At the rear of the car, there’s a center-mounted chrome twin tailpipe and a racing-style diffuser, also highlighted in gloss black.

2012 Volkswagen Golf R photo2012 Volkswagen Golf R photo

The interior gains a unique steering wheel, shifter knob, door sill plates and trim that differentiate it from the GTI. There are two trim levels: Base and High. Inside, the Base model features a multifunction steering wheel and leather-topped seats with the R logo, while the High trim adds a sunroof, the RNS 315 navigation system, the Dynaudio® sound system, and keyless entry with push-button start.

New 2012 Volkswagen Golf R specifications, photos and images courtesy of Volkswagen.

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