Volkswagen Golf GTI MK7 Previewed in Design Concept

Luke Vandezande
by Luke Vandezande

Still unconfirmed as a production model, the near-finished seventh-generation Golf GTI just hit the Paris Motor Show floor.

Volkswagen isn’t ready to call it the model that will make it to production, but the brand also offered key information: its horsepower ratings. Just like its less-engaging Golf sibling, the GTI will run on VW’s new MQB architecture. For the Golf, that means a 220-lb weight savings.

VW didn’t discuss how many pounds the GTI will shed, but it’s likely to be a similar figure. Apart from talking chatting with Jenny Craig, so to speak, the GTI also hit the gym. In its coming generation the base car grows to 220 hp (10 more than before), but customers will also be able to choose the performance version with yet another 10-hp boost for a total 230.

Gearbox options will stay the same with the choice between a six-speed manual or DSG, and VW will also introduce its new “progressive steering” when the GTI goes on sale.

Other steering systems use a constant ratio, but the new VW system changes to reduce needed steering wheel rotation in tight spaces like parking lots.

Just as any enthusiast will tell you, though, the GTI isn’t about parking — it’s about tight corners and responsive handling – two things that could improve by riding on the new MQB framework.

Dates are still ambiguous, but the new Golf is expected for North American sale in mid 2014, meaning it would be reasonable to expect the GTI version late that year or early 2015.

GALLERY: Volkswagen GTI concept

Luke Vandezande
Luke Vandezande

Luke is an energetic automotive journalist who spends his time covering industry news and crawling the internet for the latest breaking story. When he isn't in the office, Luke can be found obsessively browsing used car listings, drinking scotch at his favorite bar and dreaming of what to drive next, though the list grows a lot faster than his bank account. He's always on <A title="@lukevandezande on Twitter" href="">Twitter</A> looking for a good car conversation. Find Luke on <A title="@lukevandezande on Twitter" href="">Twitter</A> and <A title="Luke on Google+" href="">Google+</A>.

More by Luke Vandezande

Join the conversation
  • Free_webapps Free_webapps on Sep 29, 2012

    Ahhh! That's more like it VW. I just wish the US market didn't always get screwed on HP, release dates and other options available elsewhere.

  • GTIFan GTIFan on Dec 04, 2012

    Any update on GTI release date for the US Market? I have a MK6 which released in the US during Q4 of 2009. Can we expect 2013 Q4 as a reasonable date for the MK7 release in the US?