We wave cheery bye to the Management Fleet Volkswagen Golf GTI, one of the most nickable models the crankandpiston team has ever argued about.[Not a valid template]
We’re no strangers to the powers-that-be on occasion pulling rank at crankandpiston.com, particularly when there’s something juicy on Fast Fleet. A McLaren MP4-12C? Naturally. A Bentley Flying Spur Speed? But of course. But a Volkswagen hatchback? Well, apparently.
It’s been quite some time since we’ve had a long term model that so many members of the team have pushed to get their grubby mitts on. And with good reason. Though our new seventh gen Volkswagen Golf GTI was only with us for two months (and we’re certainly not complaining VW peeps), it has racked up the kilometres thanks to the incredible handling, balance and nippiness that we were first introduced to on the GTI’s international launch. And with the 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder belting out 217bhp and 258lb ft of torque, it’s safe to say that standing quarter miles – well, the stretch between lights during rush hour – proved a sure fire way to beat off the workday blues.
But that’s not to say we have simply been haring about the region like pillocks. A well-stocked interior cabin, superbly comfortable leather seats, a near-perfect driving position and an easy-to-navigate infotainment system have made the GTI an ideal run around, normally with half an arseload of camera equipment in the boot. True, the striking looks did take a wallop when the passenger side front alloy went mano y mano with a high kerb, and lost. Regrettably we never could nail down a time slot with the Al Nabooda service centre to get this fixed, but we hope a few weeks in the VW doghouse and all shall be forgiven.
It’s difficult to find much wrong with our now former long term GTI. Okay, if we really dug deep then steering in Normal driving mode is a little on the vague side, and an e-brake seems a bit unusual in a hot hatch. But these are trifling points.
The next instalment on our fleet will have a pretty tough mountain to climb.
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|Engine:||Inline 4-cyl / 1984cc / turbo|
|Power:||217bhp @ 4500-6300rpm|
|Torque:||258 lb ft @ 1500-4400rpm|
|Transmission:||Six-speed DSG, front wheel drive|
|Front suspension:||Anti-roll bars front and rear / McPherson struts with lower wishbones|
|Rear suspension:||Anti-roll bars front and rear / four-link suspension with separate spring-shock absorber arrangement|
|Brakes:||Disc brakes front and rear / ventilated 312mm x 25mm (front) / 300mm x 12mm (rear)|
|Wheels:||17-in front and rear|
|Tyres:||225/45 R17 front and rear|