Golf GTI Clubsport spied in testing

Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport

It’s Volkswagen’s answer to the Megane RS275 Trophy R and it’s one step closer to reality, as these pics show. It, of course, is the Golf GTI Clubsport, which was presented in concept form at the Wörthersee show earlier this year.

The show car had semi slick rubber and the promise of a power boost to 195kW (265hp). Latest talk suggests that power could rise to as much as 215kW (290hp), which would be driven to the front wheels through a VAQ diff.

This test mule is fitted with a roll cage, but that’s pretty standard for cars lapping the Nordschleife during industry pool sessions. However, there is a suggestion that a half cage may be available as an option when the Clubbie is released next year to celebrate the GTI’s 40th birthday.

Pleasingly, the trackside report from BTG also claims this test car was fitted with a manual gearbox. Happy days!

Follow the link below for more pics.

[Source: Bridge to Gantry]


Contractor killed at Volkswagen factory

Volkswagenwerk Kassel, Baunatal

A contractor has been killed at the Volkswagen Kassel factory in Baunatal, north of Frankfurt. Volkswagen has confirmed the 22-year-old man was part of a team installing a new robot which grabbed him and crushed him against a metal plate.

An ongoing investigation is underway with early findings claiming human error is to blame rather than a fault with the robot itself.

[Source: The Guardian | Pic:]


Volkswagen launches new corporate fonts

New Volkswagen typefaces, May 2015

Maybe Volkswagen read my little typography rant published to Instagram after my Autostadt visit back in April (see below). Maybe they didn’t, but what they have done is launch two new fonts to take the brand into the future.

Gone is the still very functional and successful VW Headline and VW Utopia fonts, in use since 1997, and in comes the new VW Head and VW Text fonts.

MetaDesign has been working with Volkswagen since 1994 and launched the old fonts back in the late 1990s and is also responsible for the new designs, which radiate “dynamism, modernity, and the human touch”.

You can compare the two above and below, with the old style on the left and the new world order displayed on the right.

What do you think? Do you even care? I certainly do and if it means that shitty “Auto” text on the light switch will be gone then I will be very pleased!

[Source: Car and Driver & MetaDesign | Thanks to Wayne for the tip]


An early look at the Golf R400

Volkswagen Golf R400

Here’s an early look at the mighty Golf R400, as seen exiting the Nürburgring. It’s got flared guards. It’s got a beefy oil cooler. It’s got big brakes with drilled rotors. It’s got a big kick arse fixed rear wing. It’s got 400 horsepower. And it’s got out attention!

Follow the link below for more pics.

[Source: VWvortex]

UPDATE: More photos are available at

Audi Porsche Skoda Video Volkswagen

VIDEO: A look at Wörthersee 2015

Worthersee 2015

As well as being a platform for the Volkswagen Group to release some very cool concept metal the annual Wörthersee GTI Treffen is otherwise a very big gathering of petrolheads. In fact, it’s the largest Volkswagen/Audi/etc gathering in Europe.

It’s also a big lake in Austria.

Here’s a video that takes you behind the scenes of 2015 show.

[Thanks to John for the tip]


Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport concept revealed

Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport

Next year the Golf GTI will turn 40 and to start the celebrations Volkswagen has revealed this Clubsport concept model at its annual Wörthersee show.

Volkswagen says the Golf GTI Clubsport will go on sale in 2016. The special edition GTI gets a power boost to 195kW and revised model-specific body styling designed to improve downforce.

The images revealed show the wheels filling out the guards nicely, although it remains to be seen if that’s anything more than Photoshop trickery. You’ll also notice the tyres shown are semi-slicks, which is rather interesting. That means you should also expect the Clubsport to boast other mods such as a revised exhaust plus uprated brakes and suspension.

The BMW-like “air curtain” featured in that new front spoiler will also help keep your bigger brakes a bit cooler. Indeed, this looks like being one very cool GTI.

It looks good. It will drive well. And, finally, a Clubsport to which we can say: “I just want one.”


An update on the mighty Golf R400

Volkswagen Golf R400 Concept

Over the last week or so there’s been some talk about the Golf R400 being signed off for production. This is a good thing, I’m sure you’ll all agree, but it’s not actually new news. It’s over a year ago now that Car and Driver reported that Volkswagen’s powertrain boss Dr Heinz-Jakob Neusser told them the R400 would become a reality.

What is news is that the R400 might actually be an R420. That’s to say instead of boasting 400 horsepower it might actually have 420PS to play with. Dr Neusser is again the source of the latest discussion, as reported by Car.

“We have the Golf more sporty than ever before, since we soon will have the Golf R400—we will do this car,” Neusser confirmed. “We are in fact in development of it right now.”

So where does this R420 bit come from? Cast your mind back to the 2014 Geneva Motor Show and the Audi TT quattro sport concept. Yep, its EA888-based 2.0 litre turbocharged four-pot had 309kW or 420PS.

It may be that Volkswagen will leave Audi to the top-spec version of this revised high-output engine. For now, though, let’s pretend we’re going to see a Golf R420 because, well, it’d just be a bit cooler to comfortably exceed 400 horsepower in a standard production model Golf don’t you think?!

Even cooler is the suggestion that the production-spec Golf R400/R420 will debut at the Frankfurt show this September, with deliveries to follow shortly thereafter.

Bring it!

[Source: Car]

Audi BMW Mercedes-Benz Porsche Volkswagen

Germany, here I come!

Porsche Museum

AUSmotive is about to go into a hiatus of some sort while I head on an overseas holiday for the next five weeks or so. I’ll be flying to Germany later this week and the items on my magical museum tour, in itinerary order, include:

If I get a chance I may post some updates while I’m away, but I can’t be sure if the time or urge will come my way. I return to Australia in early May and I’m going to have an awesome time experiencing some very cool automotive content.

With regards to updates you may best to keep an eye out on Facebook and Twitter.

Citroen Ford Hyundai Volkswagen WRC

2015 Rally Mexico in pictures

2015 Rally Monte Carlo

We’re just three races into the 2015 WRC season and dual world champion Sebastien Ogier already has a commanding lead in the drivers’ championship. Here’s a pictorial look back at how he conquered the dust and gravel in Rally Mexico.

It’s okay, unlike Sebastien, we give all of his main rivals equal time in the spotlight too. Enjoy the pics!

Volkswagen WRC

Sebastien Ogier wins 2015 Rally Mexico

Sebastien Ogier wins 2015 Rally Mexico

It’s time to dust off your sombrero and grab a Corona from the fridge because Sebastien Ogier has won Rally Mexico for the third year in a row.

Before the event the reigning world champion said it would be difficult to manage a podium finish due to regulations seeing him running first on the road, sweeping the dust and gravel aside for his following opponents. And yet, in the end, the Volkswagen ace won the event by almost 1 minute and 20 seconds from Citroën’s Mads Ostberg.

“Absolutely incredible! I am so happy and proud of this victory in Mexico,” Ogier said after his third win from three starts in 2015. “It is one of the best wins of my career. Julien and I had a perfect weekend, the Polo was fantastic, and the team did a magnificent job.

“We pushed like crazy from the word go in the cockpit, came up with the cleverest tyre selection on Friday—and were rewarded in the end.

“It is my third win in a row here. The Rally Mexico seems to be kind to me. And I love coming here. The route suits me, the countryside is fantastic, and the fans make the rally a great fiesta every year.”

Andreas Mikkelsen moved up to second in the championship standings thanks to his third place on a weekend where many front runners had problems.

Kris Meeke crashed out. Jari-Matti Latvala crashed out. And so did Thierry Neuville.

The most spectacular incident was when Ott Tanak gently rolled into a lake. That in itself wasn’t so bad, it was the sight of his Ford Fiesta RS WRC sinking and the subsequent footage of he and co-driver Raigo Molder swimming to safety that grabbed the headlines. We’ll have more on that later.

In the meantime Ogier now enjoys a 34 point lead in the drivers’ championship and appears well on the way to a third straight title. The WRC returns in mid-April for Rally Argentina.

Citroen Ford Hyundai Volkswagen WRC

2015 Rally Sweden in pictures

2015 Rally Monte Carlo

Well, whaddya know, time flies when you’re having fun and Rally Mexico is almost upon us. By the barest of margins here’s your chance to check out the ice cool pics from Rally Sweden, which was one of the most exciting WRC events we’ve ever seen.

Let’s hope Rally Mexico provides as much entertainment and another chance to look at those silly hats!

Hyundai Volkswagen WRC

Sebastien Ogier wins 2015 Rally Sweden

2015 Rally Sweden

Sebastien Ogier won Rally Sweden on the weekend, but this was not just any rally win. It was one of the most exciting finales to a WRC event we have been lucky enough to see. And the final deciding stage was live on television.

Going into the last special stage, a power stage offering bonus championship points, Andreas Mikkelsen held a narrow lead from Sebastien Ogier and Thierry Neuville. All three drivers had led the rally at various stages over the weekend.

Neuville was the first of the three leaders to go and did his part by setting the fastest time, more than five seconds faster than Mads Ostebrg’s previous best. Next was Ogier and in that 16km final stage we saw what he is made of. The dual world champion was blistering and went 4.8 seconds faster than Neuville. Wow!

The pressure was on the young shoulders of Andreas Mikkelsen, could he defend his lead and claim his maiden WRC victory?

Alas for the 25-year-old Norwegian he made a small mistake about two-thirds the way through the stage. Like many before him during this event, he ran a fraction wide on a corner and was sucked into one of the soft snow banks. There was no damage to his car, but the 40 seconds he lost relegated him back to third place, behind Neuville and eventual winner Ogier. It was a cruel blow and ended hopes for what would have been a very popular win.

With his second win from two races Ogier is already building a sizeable gap in the championship; he has 53 points and leads Mikkelsen and Neuville, both on 30 points.

The next rally will take place in Mexico in around three weeks from now.