New Volkswagen Golf R in South Africa


New Golf R

Port Elizabeth, February 2014


Volkswagen is starting 2014 with the market introduction of one of the sportiest compact models in South Africa, the new Golf R. Since February 2013, Volkswagen has launched seven new Golf derivatives including Golf GTI.

The new Golf R is powered by a newly designed 206 kW engine, which is 18 kW more powerful but up to 18 per cent more fuel efficient than the sixth generation Golf R. Like all previous Golf R models, the new model also transfers its turbocharged engine power to the road via a permanent all-wheel drive system. In this case, it is the latest version of the 4MOTION system with a fifth-generation Haldex coupling.

Delivering pure dynamic performance are a newly configured sport suspension system (body height lowered by 20 mm), the new progressive steering system and “ESC Sport”. Optional features include Dynamic Chassis Control (DCC) system with the driving profile selector that features a new Race mode.

The Golf R with a manual gearbox (only available in the second half of 2014) reaches 100 km/h after just 5.2 seconds (previous model: 5.7 seconds). The classic sprint is completed in 5.0 seconds with dual clutch gearbox (DSG). The car’s top speed is electronically limited to 250 km/h.

Despite the car’s exceptionally agile driving performance and 18 kW more power, fuel consumption of the new Golf R is down from 8.5 to 6.9 l/100 km compared to that of the previous model. CO2 emissions were also improved from 199 to 159 g/km. The new Golf R that is equipped with BlueMotion Technology that offers Stop-Start system and battery regeneration.

The new Golf R is equipped with an extensive package of customised and exclusive features. Along with specially designed bumpers, side sills and 19-inch Cadiz alloy wheels, the Golf R can also be visually distinguished by details such as standard bi-xenon headlights with newly designed LED daytime running lights (in dual-U design), dark red LED rear lights and two-branch exhaust system with four chrome tailpipes.

Inside, the Golf R underlines its position as the flagship of the model range with leather sport seats, leather-trimmed three-spoke sport steering wheel, ambience lighting, automatic climate control and a radio-CD system with touchscreen.



High-tech turbocharged engine.

Like the current Golf GTI, the Golf R is powered by further advanced engine design of the four-cylinder EA888 engine series. Compared to the previous engine, numerous technical details were modified to reduce fuel consumption and emissions and at the same time to increase power and torque values. The engine has a newly designed cylinder head.

Compared to the 162 kW Golf GTI, designers boosted engine power of the Golf R by 44 kW to 206 kW (from 5,500 to 6,200 rpm), creating one of the most powerful four-cylinder engines. Maximum torque has increased by 30 Nm to 380 Newton metres. It is available over a broad speed range from 1,800 to 5,500 rpm. To attain these values, the TSI, with a displacement of 1,984 cc, was subjected to a development programme similar to that of a motorsport engine. The following components were modified or completely redesigned compared to the already highly agile GTI engine – the cylinder head (together with exhaust valves, valve seats and springs), pistons, high-pressure injection valves as well as the turbocharger.

Efficient thermal management.

The turbocharged direct petrol injection engines of the EA888 series all have innovative detailed solutions such as water-cooled exhaust gas channels running through the cylinder head to the turbocharger (to reduce efficiently full-load fuel consumption) and a dual injection system with direct injection and multi-port injection. Thanks to its new fully-electronic coolant control system, thermal management of the TSI in the Golf R is also much more efficient with a reduced warm-up phase; this reduces friction losses and fuel consumption. In addition, the TSI has variable valve timing with dual camshaft adjustment. In addition, valve lift on the exhaust side can be switched in two stages. This solution enables optimal control of the charge exchange process for better performance, fuel economy and low emissions.



Fifth-generation Haldex coupling.

Permanent 4MOTION all-wheel drive has always been a trait of the Golf R. The latest generation 4MOTION system is now being used in the fourth-generation Golf R. This all-wheel drive system is coupled with a 6-speed manual gearbox that has a reinforced clutch and short-travel shifting. Another optional feature is automatic shifting with a 6-speed dual-clutch gearbox (DSG).

The 4MOTION all-wheel drive system of the Golf R, has been further perfected by enhancements such as the Haldex 5 coupling that is activated even before any wheel starts to slip. This eliminates nearly all traction losses. The system achieves this by using an advanced control function based on specific driving conditions. When operating under a relatively low load or when coasting, forward propulsion comes primarily from the front axle, and the rear axle is decoupled. This basic drive layout saves fuel. However, the rear axle of the Golf R can be variably engaged in fractions of a second whenever necessary. This is done via a Haldex coupling, which is activated by an electro-hydraulic oil pump.

Situation-based power distribution.

A control unit continually calculates the ideal drive torque for the rear axle and controls how much the multi-plate clutch should be closed by activating the oil pump. The oil pressure increases the contact pressure at the clutch plates in proportion to the torque desired at the rear axle. So, the amount of pressure applied to the clutch plates can be used to vary continuously the magnitude of the transmitted torque. The wheels of the 206 kW Golf R are prevented from spinning even when driving off and accelerating, because the control unit regulates the torque distribution as a function of dynamic axle loads. Activation of the Haldex 5 coupling is based primarily on the engine torque demanded by the driver. In parallel, a driving status identification system within the all-wheel drive control unit evaluates such parameters as wheel speeds and steering angle. If necessary, nearly 100 per cent of the drive torque can be directed to the rear axle.

Four-wheel EDS as transverse locks

. In addition to the Haldex coupling that acts as a longitudinal lock, four electronic differential locks (EDS) integrated in the electronic stability control system act as transverse locks. The system briefly brakes a wheel that is slipping, enabling uninterrupted and stable transfer of drive power to the wheel on the opposite side. In the Golf R, the electronic differential locks are implemented at both axles in what is referred to as four-wheel EDS. 4

XDS+ makes tracking in bends more precise

. In addition, the Golf R is equipped with XDS+ at the front and rear axles. This brakes the wheels on the inside of a bend during fast driving through bends, optimising steering behaviour. In the latest version, known as XDS+, this functionality is applied to a larger range of dynamic performance – making the vehicle more agile even when the car is not in an acceleration state. In technical terms, XDS+ is a functional extension of the electronic differential locks. When the car is being driven fast, as soon as the electronics detect excessively light loads on wheels on the inside of a bend, the hydraulics of Electronic Stability Control (ESC) apply brake pressure to this wheel to restore optimal traction. XDS+ thereby operates as a transverse differential lock that compensates for understeer during fast cornering.

ESC Sport


The new Golf R is equipped with the “ESC Sport” function as standard. The system is activated by a two-stage switch on the centre console. When the driver presses this switch briefly, Electronic Stability Control (ESC) switches to the “ESC Sport” mode. During fast driving such as on a race track, the ESC system reacts with a delay giving the car even more agile handling properties.


Combination of sportiness and comfort.

The Golf R has a sport suspension setup that is individually tuned to the 206 kW all-wheel drive car. Compared to the base Golf, its ride height was lowered by 20 mm, which makes the Golf R 5 mm lower than the GTI.

In the Golf R, a MacPherson-type front suspension (spring struts) with a newly developed low wishbone and track-stabilising scrub radius delivers optimal handling and steering properties and well-balanced vibration behaviour. The multi-link rear suspension of the all-wheel drive Golf R was enhanced in numerous areas. Volkswagen also enhanced the high-performance suspension’s lateral rigidity by implementing new bearing tuning of the steering link.

Dynamic performance.

Engineers designed the basic tuning of the running gear of the new Golf R for maximum driving fun with extraordinary driving stability and good long touring comfort. Compared to the previous model, steering response is even more agile with direct steering gear ratios by the car’s progressive steering system. In addition, maximum attainable speeds were significantly increased when driving through bends. The running gear was tuned to be more neutral for this purpose, avoiding understeering all the way up to the car’s performance limits.

The new calibration of the all-wheel drive system makes a decisive contribution towards achieving neutral handling. Response times of the Haldex coupling were minimised, and the drive torques that occur in specific driving situations were optimised for maximum neutrality, avoiding self-steering effects even under high load. The result is more uniform and predictable steering response in bends.

To attain optimal mechanical grip, stiffness values were precisely controlled for springs and anti-roll bars and intentionally designed not to be too stiff. In conjunction with the extremely fine adjustment of damper characteristics, the new Golf R shows an exceptional ability to follow the line the driver wants to drive precisely – on both flat and uneven route profiles. This makes handling very precise and smooth up to performance limits. The car’s neutral handling in curves is also combined with very good driving stability thanks to the innovative layout of all running gear components. This excellent driving stability is especially noticeable in lane changes and load alterations. In tuning the new Golf R, the development team also focused on harmonious and predictable reactions of the running gear.

Ride comfort.

Along with dynamic performance, suspension comfort was perfected compared to the previous model. The running gear harmoniously absorbs both small and large unevenness of the road surface. With the very large spread of positive properties mentioned – direct, neutral and stable handling combined with a high level of ride comfort – the running gear of the Golf R delivers a unique synthesis of maximum dynamic performance and ideal long touring capabilities.

Progressive steering.

Like the new Golf GTI, the Golf R is equipped with the newly developed progressive steering system as standard. Drivers do not need to turn the steering wheel as much to turn a desired radius. 5

They also do not need to reach over the steering wheel as often in tight bends. With progressive steering, it takes 2.1 turns of the wheel (380°) to reach the end stop. The standard steering system of less powerful Golf derivatives takes 2.75 turns (500°). Conventional steering systems operate with a constant gear ratio. The new steering of the Golf R operates with a progressive steering gear ratio. This noticeably reduces steering effort in manoeuvring and parking. On country roads with lots of bends, and when making turns, the driver experiences a plus in dynamics due to the more direct layout.


. The new Golf R can be ordered with Dynamic Chassis Control (DCC) as an option. DCC offers the three driving modes ‘Comfort’, ‘Normal’ and ‘Sport’, which are now selected and displayed via the touchscreen on the centre console as part of the “Driving Profile Selector” functionality. In “Sport” mode, even more dynamic handling is implemented.

The DCC system adaptively controls the damper valves via a refined control algorithm for setting the damper characteristics. DCC takes input signals from wheel displacement sensors and accelerometers as well as vehicle information from the Chassis-CAN bus to compute these values and adaptively adjust the optimal damping force for every driving situation. Moreover, damping forces are selectively applied to the four wheels individually. With the new generation of DCC, it is now also possible to fully independently vary rebound and compression damping for transverse dynamic manoeuvres – a significant benefit in optimising vehicle dynamics.

Driver profile selector with Race mode

. New in the Golf R is the Driving Profile Selector that is a standard feature of DCC. A total of four programmes are available, and five driving programmes in conjunction with DCC: “Eco”, “Normal”, “Individual” and the special “Race” mode that was specially tailored to the Golf R. In combination with DCC, “Comfort” mode is also available. All modes were specifically tuned for application in the Golf R.

In “Race” mode, damping is increased (which further reduces movements of the body structure), and engine response and shift points of the optional DSG transmission are configured to be even more dynamic. In the “Individual” driving profile, the driver can individually combine mode settings for the various single components. When in the “Eco” driving profile, on the other hand, the engine controller, air conditioning and other auxiliary units are controlled for optimal fuel economy. Vehicles with DSG also have a coasting function in Eco mode. When the driver releases the accelerator pedal for example when slowing down to a traffic light or on route segments with descents – the DSG disengages and the engine idles, which enables optimal utilisation of the kinetic energy of the Golf R.


The extremely durable brakes were also adapted to the new Golf R. Here, Volkswagen uses a 17-inch system with internally ventilated discs and black brake callipers (with “R” logo) at all four wheels. In front, the brake pistons have a diameter of 60 mm, while 42 mm pistons are used at the rear. The 30 mm thick brake discs of the front wheels have a diameter of 340 mm; the rear discs are 22 mm thick and 310 mm in diameter.



Customised styling.

Volkswagen R GmbH has developed numerous new exterior details for the flagship Golf. They include the bumpers, side sills, rear diffuser, chrome dual tailpipes of the exhaust system (left and right of the diffuser), layout and lighting design of the bi-xenon headlights and standard 19-inch alloy wheels.

Front end.

The Golf R can be distinguished from the front by a new bumper design with exceptionally large air inlets, modified radiator grille (with “R” logo) and newly developed daytime running lights that are integrated into the housings of the standard bi-xenon headlights. The LED daytime running lights form a distinctive dual “U” design beneath the dual headlights.

Side profile.

From the side, the Golf R is characterised by newly designed 19-inch “Cadiz” alloy wheels with size 225/35 tyres, black brake callipers with “R” logo, side sill panels in “R” style painted in body colour, “R” badges on the front wings and “Matt chrome” door mirror caps. 6

Rear section.

Rear details that define the look of the new Golf R include smoked LED rear lights with a distinctive light-coloured stripe in the middle, diffuser in “R” design, four chrome tailpipes and an “R” logo on the boot lid.


The range of exterior paints comprises eight body colours. A new paint was created specifically and exclusively for the Golf R, Lapiz Blue Metallic. Other colour choices are Pure White, Tornado Red, Night Blue, Limestone Grey Metallic, Reflex Silver Metallic Oryx White Pearl Effect and Deep Black Pearl Effect.


Leather Sport seats.

Similarly to the previous Golf R models, Volkswagen R GmbH has extensively customised and upgraded the interior of the new model as well. The Golf R is equipped with leather sport seats.

The decorative seams are “Crystal Grey” in the leather upholstery version as well. Leather is also used to trim the upper and lower grip zones of the three-spoke sport steering wheel in “R” design. The steering wheel’s lower cross bar has a chrome “R” logo. Here too, all leather elements have decorative stitching in the contrasting colour “Crystal Grey”.

The decorative inlays of the dashboard and door trim panels feature the “Carbon Touch” design; ambience lighting is also integrated in the door trim panels as standard. The door sill guards are illuminated as well (in blue). The pedals and foot supports are also designed in stainless steel look as standard. Customisation extends down to the floor mats, which have upgraded piping in a contrasting colour.

Instruments in “R” design.

The instruments and the start menu of the touchscreen on the centre console were also customised. To give a sporty feel from the very start, when the ignition is switched on the illuminated light-blue needles of the tachometer and speedometer sweep once across the entire scale to the end pin – in the case of the speedometer to the 320 km/h mark. The instrument needles are also automatically illuminated as soon as the driver’s door is opened. The touchscreen of the Composition Media radio or optional radio-navigation system shows an animated “R” logo as a start screen.

Radio and radio-navigation systems.

Volkswagen has equipped the Golf R with redesigned radio and radio/navigation systems. The new generation is available in two different display sizes: 5.8 inches and 8 inches. Both systems have touchscreens with proximity sensor as standard. As soon as the driver or front passenger moves a finger near to the touchscreen, the system automatically switches from display mode to input mode. The display mode shows a screen that is reduced to just the essentials. In the operating mode, on the other hand, the elements that can be activated by touch are specially highlighted to simplify intuitive operation. The displays also have a function that lets users scroll through lists or browse CDs in the media library with a wipe of the hand.


The new Golf R is offered with a range of standard and optional innovative driver assistance and convenience systems. The assistance and convenience systems in the new Golf R include the standard Automatic Multi-Collision Braking System, progressive steering, an advanced XDS+ electronic differential lock, fatigue detection system, Light Assist, Dynamic Chassis control with driving profile selector, electronic parking brake, KESSY keyless entry and Discover Pro Navigation system.

Automatic Multi-Collision Braking System.

An innovative new feature is the Golf’s Automatic Multi-Collision Braking System which won the safety innovation award from Germany’s largest automobile club (ADAC). When a Golf R is involved in a collision, the Automatic Multi-Collision Braking System automatically brakes the vehicle to significantly reduce its residual kinetic energy. Triggering of the Automatic Multi-Collision Braking System is based on detection of a primary collision by the airbag sensors. Vehicle braking by means of the Automatic Multi-Collision Braking System is limited by the ESC control unit to a maximum deceleration rate of 0.6 g. This value ensures that the driver can take over handling of the car even in case of automatic braking. 7

The driver can “override” the Automatic Multi-Collision Braking System at any time; for example, if the system recognises that the driver is accelerating, it gets disabled. The automatic system is also deactivated if the driver initiates hard braking at an even higher rate of deceleration. In essence, the Automatic Multi-Collision Braking System applies the brakes until a vehicle speed of 10 km/h is reached. This residual vehicle speed can be used to steer to a safe location after the braking process.

Electronic parking brake.

Instead of a handbrake lever, a control switch plus an Auto Hold switch are located on the centre console of the Golf R. The electronic parking brake offers numerous advantages such as eliminating the conventional handbrake which frees up more space on the centre console. The Auto Hold function prevents unintentional rolling from a stopped position by automatically holding the Golf R in place. Waiting phases, such as a red traffic light, are made more comfortable, because it is no longer necessary to continually press the brake pedal.

Light Assist main beam control.

The optional Light Assist analyses traffic ahead– via a camera in the windscreen – and automatically controls activation and deactivation of the main beam (at 60 km/h and above).

Climate control system.

The new Climatronic of the Golf regulates the interior temperature automatically via 2-zone temperature control (separate for driver and front passenger). The intensity of the climate control can be influenced by selecting a profile (‘Gentle’, ‘Moderate’, ‘Intensive’). The fully automatic control unit operates with various sensors – a sun sensor, air quality sensor and new humidity sensor.

Panoramic tilt/slide sunroof.

A transparent system was developed here, which utilises a maximum roof area, offers optimal ventilation and opening functions, does not impair the torsional rigidity of the car and has the visual effect of lengthening the windscreen. What is referred to as the light transparency area – the incident light in the closed state – was enlarged by 33 per cent compared to a normal tilt/slide sunroof. Incidentally, the tinted, heat-insulating glass reflects away 99 per cent of UV radiation, 92 per cent of incident heat radiation and 90 per cent of incident light. The Panoramic tilt/slide sunroof is available as an option.

“Discover Pro” radio-navigation system.

The optional radio-navigation system features a DVD drive, premium voice control, 3D navigation and a 10-GB memory. Integration of the Compact Disc Database from Gracenote enables state-of-the-art playback and management of media.

KESSY Keyless Entry.

KESSY Keyless entry is an optional convenience feature to start the engine as well as enter and exit the new Golf R. When a door handle is touched, a signal is transmitted from an aerial integrated in the handle. The system then searches for a valid ID transmitter, from which it detects access authorisation. The antenna relays the code sent by the transmitter to the relevant control unit. If the code is recognised, the system then unlocks the doors, deactivates the immobiliser and the anti-theft alarm system, and allows the vehicle to be started at the push of a button.

Nappa-Carbon Leather Package.

The R model offers a Nappa-carbon leather package as an option. Here, the outer seat surfaces, inner side support panels, and head restraints are all upholstered in dark “Carbon” Nappa leather to compliment the “Carbon Touch” decorative inlays of the dashboard and door trim panels 8

PRICES (VAT and emissions tax included)

  • 2.0 TSI 206 kW DSG R486 200

The new Golf R comes standard with a 5 year/90 000km Service Plan, 3 year/120 000km warranty and a 12 year anti-corrosion warranty. Service interval is 15 000km.

Issued by:T he Public Relations Department of Volkswagen of South Africa