This weekend (5 to 7 April 2019), the Sébastien Loeb Racing team and Volkswagen Motorsport join the line-up for the FIA World Touring Car Championship in Morocco – with no less than four racing versions of the Golf GTI TCR. The already sporty compact vehicle was tuned to the requirements of the racing track by Volkswagen Motorsport experts and now boasts 257 kW (350 PS). Based on the racing version, Volkswagen offers the Golf GTI TCR1) production model with 213 kW (290 PS).
A strong line-up at the international racing series
On the Moulay el Hassan circuit in Marrakesh, Mehdi Bennani (MA), Rob Huff (GB), Johan Kristoffersson (S) and Benjamin Leuchter (D) will face a strong starting grid with their four Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR cars. Seven of the 26 permanent drivers have already won FIA titles, including Huff (2012 World Touring Car Champion) and Kristoffersson (2017 and 2018 World Rallycross Champion). “This year, the WTCR is without a doubt the strongest touring car racing series in the world”, says Volkswagen Motorsport Director Sven Smeets. “A highly intensive season preparation phase now lies behind us, but the true balance of power will not become apparent until Morocco. We are aiming for victories and podiums – and obviously we want to be fighting for the driver and team titles at the very end."
Benjamin Leuchter, the only German driver to join this year's line-up in the WTCR, is living his childhood dream. “I am incredibly grateful to be here. There are a lot of new things to take in, but I am trying to learn quickly.” When asked about his expectations, the Volkswagen driver replies: “The opening round will be very important. After that, I want to improve from race to race and then to challenge for a spot on the podium on the Nordschleife. It is clear to me that, as a rookie, I will not immediately be challenging for victories, otherwise the other drivers must have been doing something wrong in recent years.”
Golf GTI TCR - Golf with racing genes
The racing car feeling is not reserved for professional racing car drivers; the production version also has a distinctly sporty feel. Thanks to its 213 kW (290 PS) powertrain, the Golf GTI TCR accelerates from zero to 100 in 5.6 seconds. It has a top speed of 250 km/h, which can be optionally extended to 260 km/h. The standard equipment includes a front-axle differential lock, perforated brake discs, driving profile selection, premium front sports seats and a unique sports steering wheel. The new Golf GTI TCR stands out from the crowd with its standard 18-inch forged Belvedere wheels, sill extensions, front splitter, its very own roof spoiler and a diffuser at the rear. The exclusive production model can be customised with a range of optional equipment.
1)Golf GTI TCR (DSG) fuel consumption, l/100 km (NEDC): urban 8.3 / extra- urban 5.8–5.7 / combined 6.7; CO₂ emissions (combined), g/km: 153-151; efficiency class: D
Golf GTI TCR fuel consumption, l/100 km (WLTP): slow 10.3 / average 7.5 / fast 6.7 / very fast 7.8 / combined 7.7; CO₂ emissions (combined) in g/km: 175; efficiency class: D.