An Up! GTI? Yes, Volkswagen confirms 2018 introduction

  • Up! GTI follows the genetic heritage of the first Golf GTI 
  • World premiere of the Up! GTI concept car at Lake Wörthersee 
  • Production version will be launched in 2018

Wolfsburg – A circle closes 41 years after the debut of the first Golf GTI: at this year's GTI Meet at Lake Wörthersee (May 24 to 27), Volkswagen is presenting a compact, sporty car very much in the spirit of the original GTI.

The new up! GTI pushes out 85kW from its 1.0-litre TSI engine which is broadly in line with the Golf GTI MkI presented in 1976 that had 81kW.

VW South Africa told Wheels24 the smallest GTI will not be available in Mzansi. 

Top speed 197km/h

VW says the near-production concept car pays tribute to the original GTI with compact dimensions, a low weight, a powerful engine, sports running gear and the typical insignia of a GTI (including red stripes in the radiator grille, seat covers in "clark" tartan pattern).

The production version of the up! GTI will be launched into the market in early 2018.

The GTI is driven by a turbocharged engine (TSI) with 230Nm of torque. The key data do indeed read like a Golf GTI MkI catapulted into the present day. Weight: 997 kg (significantly high-strength steels and more airbags).  Top speed of 197 km/h and a 0-100km/h sprint time of 8.8 seconds.

The car will be available in "tornado red" and "pure white" and the metallic colours "dark silver", "black pearl" and – as a new GTI colour – "costa azul" (blue).

The Up! GTI is set apart by a red stripe across the radiator grille with honeycomb pattern. Integrated above it is the GTI logo. The exterior mirror caps are in high-gloss black finish and the 17" alloy wheels have also been completely redesigned.  

The up! GTI features sports running gear, lowering the body by 15mm. GTI features also characterise the rear: here, among other things, a red strip as well as a larger roof edge spoiler provides for greater downforce on the rear axle for optimised handling performance at higher speeds says the automaker.

The interior includes features as a leather-trimmed sport steering wheel, a GTI gear knob and the legendary "clark" seat pattern.