As a last hurrah, the VW Golf GTI TCR left us wanting when we drove it earlier this year. It’s a fine hot hatch, but shouldn’t the Mk7 go out with more of a bang? With something that tops the brilliant Clubsport S, perhaps?
It seems unlikely, but if VW did go down that route, it should look a little like the Golf GTI Aurora. This furious little concept is one of two interesting projects from VW apprentices to be revealed at the 2019 GTI Treffen in Worthersee, Austria this week.
With 375bhp extracted from its 2.0-litre inline-four turbo engine, it’s nearly 100bhp up on the TCR. As you’ll have no doubt noticed, it’s packing some pretty serious aero, in the form of a new front splitter, side skirts and an almost comically giant rear wing. Inside, there’s an extra display showing “engine and vehicle data,” and a roll cage where the rear seats used to be.
It’s not just about big power and lairy aero, though. Popping the boot reveals a “world first” holographic projector through which the 3500-watt sound system is “intuitively operable”. It sounds fascinating, and we’re trying our best to get hold of some video of the tech in action.
It’s finished in Nardo Grey at the front, with the rear section painted Deep Black Pearl Effect. The rear diffuser plus the decorative bits were all hand-painted.
It’s sharing a stage in Worthersee with the Golf ‘FighteR’ estate. It just about has power bragging rights, with its own EA888 engine good for 395bhp. To ensure it also looks potent, the wheel arches have been blistered, making the car 6cm wider front and rear.
Like the GTI Aurora, the Golf FighteR has some very modern tech going on if you look a little closer. There’s a 360-degree camera on the roof, which VW used to film a fast lap of Sachsenring. If you’re going to the big VW meet in Worthersee, you’ll be able to sit in the car and watch the lap using VR goggles while sitting in its custom red leather/Alcantara cabin.
See that light bar and those strobe lights in the grille? There’s a good reason for their inclusion - the FighteR is set to become a safety car for various events at Sachsenring.
Which of the two cars is your favourite?