It was the starter car for a whole generation of wild-eyed car enthusiasts. It’s the ultimate democratization of the German performance automobile. And it’s still the car that gives Volkswagen its self-image-you know, “Drivers Wanted.” If the original, Rabbit-based VW GTI irrevocably altered both the performance-car and small-car landscapes when it appeared in the early 1980s, the second-generation Golf GTI took that winning formula and made it even better. Yes, it was bigger and heavier, but it was also roomier and more powerful-particularly when equipped with the newly available, sixteen-valve DOHC engine. Its essential character remained intact: a quick, agile funster ready to blast around town, tackle the twisties, or open up an empty stretch of highway. Keen drivers, particularly the young, were drawn to the GTI like steel filings to a magnet. No other car of the past twenty years has been such a touchstone in the enthusiast community. Sadly, VW lost the plot with the follow-up version and the fourth-generation car as well. But we’re glad to say that the all-new GTI, arriving in the States just now, recaptures the magic. After all, every generation of gearheads needs that GTI experience.
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21 City / 29 Hwy
180 @ 5500
173 @ 1950