2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback

2019 MODEL
$27,595 - $37,095 See Inventory Prices

8.9

Overall Rating

2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback Complete In-depth Review & Buying Guide

The Golf GTI has been one of the most popular hot hatches around for a long time and it was newly refreshed in 2018. This year, the 2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI has been tweaked a little to make it more powerful and now also comes with a new trim - the Rabbit edition.

Powered by a 2.0L, turbocharged 4-cylinder engine, it produces 228 horsepower, 8 more than before, driving the front wheels through a 6-speed manual or an optional 7-speed dual clutch automatic. This zippy little hot hatch will set you back $27, 595 for starters.

See detailed review »

Pros

Peppy acceleration and spirited character

Brisk and sporty handling

Very practical for a hot-hatch

Interiors pack in lot more tech and are good quality

Cons

Competition offers much more power and some extra premium

Transmission isn’t so smooth at slow speeds

High performance tires makes the ride a little stiff

What's New?

Increase in power by 8 bhp

Optional 7-speed dual clutch transmission

Larger brakes and limited-slip differential now standard across the range

New trim termed the Rabbit Edition has been introduced


Features

vehicle bio

base price

$27595

bodystyle

4dr Hatchback

passenger capacity

5

drivetrain

FWD

engine type

horsepower

228 hp @ 4700 rpm

torque

258 lb.-ft. @ 1500 rpm

transmission

6-speed manual

chassis

suspension front

Independent strut suspension w/anti-roll bar

suspension rear

Independent multi-link suspension w/anti-roll bar

dimensions

wheelbase

103.6 in.

length

168 in.

width

70.8 in.

height

57.8 in.

curb weight

3062 lbs.

ground clearance

5.1 in.

capacity

passenger volume

93.5 cu ft.

cargo volume

22.8 cu ft.

payload capacity

959 lbs.

fuel economy

city/combined/highway

24/27/32 mpg

highway range

422.4 mi.

warranty

basic warranty

6 years/72000 miles

drivetrain warranty

6 years/72000 miles

corrosion warranty

7 years/100000 miles

roadside assistance

yes


Pictures & Videos


Styles

 2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback in Cornflower Blue color  2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback in Dark Iron Blue Metallic color  2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback in Deep Black Pearl color  2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback in Great Falls Green Metallic color  2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback in Blue Night Metallic color  2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback in Pure White color
Cornflower Blue

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.

Ratings

Engine

9.1

Interior

8.7

8.9

OVERALL RATING

Trims and Configurations

MSRP


 2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback S

S

power
228 hp @ 4700 rpm
fuel
Premium unleaded (recommended)
mpg
27 combined

$27,595 - $28,695


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
S 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6M) Starting at $27,595 MSRP (24 mpg/27/32 mpg) 228 hp @ 4700 rpm, 2 L, I-4, premium unleaded (recommended)
See Full Specs
6-speed manual front wheel drive 5
S 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 7AM) Starting at $28,695 MSRP (25 mpg/27/31 mpg) 228 hp @ 4700 rpm, 2 L, I-4, premium unleaded (recommended)
See Full Specs
7-speed automated manual front wheel drive 5

 2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback Rabbit Edition

Rabbit Edition

power
228 hp @ 4700 rpm
fuel
Premium unleaded (recommended)
mpg
27 combined

$28,895 - $29,995


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
Rabbit Edition 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6M) Starting at $28,895 MSRP (24 mpg/27/32 mpg) 228 hp @ 4700 rpm, 2 L, I-4, premium unleaded (recommended)
See Full Specs
6-speed manual front wheel drive 5
Rabbit Edition 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 7AM) Starting at $29,995 MSRP (25 mpg/27/31 mpg) 228 hp @ 4700 rpm, 2 L, I-4, premium unleaded (recommended)
See Full Specs
7-speed automated manual front wheel drive 5

 2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback SE

SE

power
228 hp @ 4700 rpm
fuel
Premium unleaded (recommended)
mpg
27 combined

$31,795 - $32,895


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
SE 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6M) Starting at $31,795 MSRP (24 mpg/27/32 mpg) 228 hp @ 4700 rpm, 2 L, I-4, premium unleaded (recommended)
See Full Specs
6-speed manual front wheel drive 5
SE 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 7AM) Starting at $32,895 MSRP (25 mpg/27/31 mpg) 228 hp @ 4700 rpm, 2 L, I-4, premium unleaded (recommended)
See Full Specs
7-speed automated manual front wheel drive 5

 2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback Autobahn

Autobahn

power
228 hp @ 4700 rpm
fuel
Premium unleaded (recommended)
mpg
27 combined

$35,995 - $37,095


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
Autobahn 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6M) Starting at $35,995 MSRP (24 mpg/27/32 mpg) 228 hp @ 4700 rpm, 2 L, I-4, premium unleaded (recommended)
See Full Specs
6-speed manual front wheel drive 5
Autobahn 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 7AM) Starting at $37,095 MSRP (25 mpg/27/31 mpg) 228 hp @ 4700 rpm, 2 L, I-4, premium unleaded (recommended)
See Full Specs
7-speed automated manual front wheel drive 5

Top Volkswagen Cars

2018 Volkswagen Golf R Hatchback
8.2/10

Engine: 292 hp @ 5400 rpm, 2 L I4

MPG: 24 combined

2017 Volkswagen Golf R Hatchback
8.2/10

Engine: 292 hp @ 5400 rpm, 2 L I4

MPG: 25 combined

2017 Volkswagen Tiguan Limited SUV
8.5/10

Engine: 200 hp @ 5100 rpm, 2 L I4

MPG: 22 combined

2017 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback
8.3/10

Engine: 210 hp @ 4500 rpm, 2 L I4

MPG: 28 combined

2018 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack Wagon
8.0/10
2018 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback
8.6/10

Engine: 220 hp @ 4700 rpm, 2 L I4

MPG: 28 combined

2018 Volkswagen Golf SportWagen
8.4/10

Engine: 170 hp @ 4500 rpm, 1.8 L I4

MPG: 29 combined

Expert Review


CARHP Editorial February 28, 2019

8.9

Overall Rating


The Honda Civic Type R, the Subaru WRX STI and from Volkswagen's stable itself, the Golf R challenges the Golf GTI for the hottest hatch competition. While the competition may seem overpowered for the GTI, it's quite a potent car and perhaps as capable as its competitors. Let's set the competition rolling.


 

9.1/10
Engine

 
 

8.7/10
Interior

 
 
 
 
 

2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback Features

Trim

2.0T S

2.0T Rabbit Edition

2.0T SE

2.0T Autobahn

MSRP

$27,595

$28,895

$31,795

$35,995

Key Features

18" machined w/painted accents aluminum Wheels

18-inch gloss black wheels

Driver and front passenger heated-cushion, heated-seatback Heated front seats

Three-mode adaptive suspension system

 

Sport-tuned suspension

Black rear spoiler

1st row LCD monitor

Limited-slip differential lock

 

Brake torque vectoring system

Keyless entry with push-button start

Remote keyless entry

A surround-view camera system

 

Red Brake Calipers

LED headlights

Front Fog/driving lights

8.0-inch multimedia touchscreen

 

LED fog lights and taillights

Adaptive front lighting

Heated mirrors

LED adaptive headlights

 

Drive mode selector

Rabbit badging

Windshield wipers - rain sensing

Adaptive cruise control

 

Clark Plaid cloth seating

Front assist

Driver and passenger Lumbar support

Leather-trimmed seating

 

Heated front seats

Blind spot monitor

Front air conditioning, Climatic manual

SiriusXM satellite radio

 

6.5-inch multimedia system touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto

Rear traffic alert

ABS and driveline Traction control

 

The 2019 Golf GTI now comes in four trim levels – S, Rabbit Edition, SE and the Autobahn. The Rabbit edition has been introduced just this year. All trims are powered by a 2.0L, turbocharged engine mated to a 6-speed manual transmission or an optional 7-speed dual clutch transmission driving only the front wheels. The trims come with different levels of equipment but powertrain remains the same essentially.

We’d Recommend:

We’d recommend you SE or the Autobahn trims. All trims are powered by the same power train but are differentiated by the amount of equipment and features. In present times, the higher trims loaded with features makes for a much more sensible buy than the base variants. Also, if only performance is on your mind, then the Autobahn trim with limited slip differential and adaptive suspension makes really good value for money with the performance it makes. Also, do opt for the 7-speed DSG gearbox which really enhances your performance.

2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback Engine

9.1/10

“The turbocharged four-cylinder that graces the GTI's engine bay is one of the greats. It doesn't offer overwhelming power but delivers instant response and solid acceleration practically anywhere in the rev range. The clutch pedal in models with the manual transmission is light, which means that shifting is never a chore.” – Car and Driver

Models

Volkswagen Golf GTI

Honda Civic Type R

Subaru WRX STI

Volkswagen Golf R

MSRP

$27,595

$35,700

$36,595

$40,395

Engine

2.0L, Turbocharged Inline-4

2.5L, Turbocharged, Inline-4

2.5L, Turbocharged, Boxer-4

2.0L Turbocharged inline-4

Transmission

6-speed manual/7-speed dual clutch

6 Speed manual

6-speed manual

7-speed dual clutch automatic

Horsepower

228 hp @ 4700 rpm

306hp@6500rpm

310hp @6000 rpm

288hp@ 5400 rpm

Torque

258 ft-lbs. @ 1500 rpm

295 ft-lbs@2500rpm

290 lb.-ft. @4000 rpm

280 lb.-ft. @ 1800rpm

The Golf GTI is powered by a 2.0L, Turbocharged, Inline-4 cylinder engine that churns out 228 hp at 4,700 rpm and 258 lbs-ft @ 1,500 rpm. The engine is really lively and loves to rev. It also sounds wonderful with pops and crackles. You would always want to rev the engine out just to hear the sweet sound from the engine.

Power delivery is linear and progressive. The torque is available quite low in the rev range, although there is a tiny amount of turbo lag. The 7-speed DSG gearbox is responsive and shifts really quickly. We have already seen the DSGs over the years and it has proven its worth. The transmission can be a little jerky at slow speeds though.

When compared to its rivals, the Golf GTI might seem a little underpowered but that’s not the point with the GTI. What’s really commendable about the GTI is that how easy it’s to drive and how easy it is to exploit the power. All cars have a 6-speed manual or a 7-speed dual clutch transmission.

Acceleration

Models

Volkswagen Golf GTI

Honda Civic Type R

Subaru WRX STI

Volkswagen Golf R

0-60 MPH

6.0 sec*

5 sec

5.7 sec

4.6

Quarter mile

14.5 sec*

13.7 sec

14.1

13.4

Engine

2.0L

2.0L

2.5 L

2.0L

Emission

(Tons/yr of CO2 Emissions @ 15K mi/year)

6.5

7.1

NA

NA

The GTI isn’t the quickest car here. Of course it was not going to be with that deficit in power. However, with its very efficient launch control system and limited slip differential in the front wheels. It sprints to 60 mph in 6 seconds which is not far behind considering the competitors are quite more powerful. The Golf R is the quickest to 60 mph in just 4.6 seconds. The quarter mile story remains in the same order.

Ride and Handling

The suspension of the GTI is set on the stiffer side. Of course it is because it’s meant to be a sporty car. Undulations on the road are not the GTI’s favorite but it will take them up fairly well. The comfortable cabin and seats compensate for that. The good news is that you are rewarded with extremely good handling.

The car remains extremely composed through corners and you can really push this car like you wouldn’t in any other car. It’s very easy to drive and the power remains extremely usable. There are three drive modes which sharpens the suspension and the steering at each higher setting.

The steering is predictable, sharp and precise and adequately weighted at every speed. It weighs up at higher speeds and remains light and easy at low speeds which makes it a great daily driver. There is great feedback from the steering wheel and the limited slip differential on the front wheels does a great job to ensure maximum grip levels.

Braking

Models

Volkswagen Golf GTI

Honda Civic Type R

Subaru WRX STI

Volkswagen Golf R

Brake Front (in.)

13.4

13.8

13

13.4

Brake Rear (in.)

12.2

12

12.2

12.2

Curb Weight (lbs.)

3062

3117

3391

3300

70-0 MPH (ft.)

174*

142

*156

159

The braking figures here are from 2018 and we do not have the 2019 braking figures yet. The brakes in 2019 are larger and we expect it to perform better. By the numbers from 2018, the Golf GTI fares the worst in the braking test. However, the brake pedal is adequately firm and has a good feeling. The car remains composed under hard braking as well.

2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback Fuel Economy

Models

Volkswagen Golf GTI

Honda Civic Type R

Subaru WRX STI

Volkswagen Golf R

MPG (city)

24

22

17

21

MPG (highway)

32

28

22

29

MPG (combined)

27

25

19

24

The Golf GTI has the best fuel economy in the competition which is not surprising because it much lower on power. However, the figures are pretty impressive for a hot hatch. It’s a car that packs in a bucket load of performance and is still quite economical in this segment.

2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback Interior

8.7/10

“The available adaptive suspension dampers allow the driver to select a composed ride that is far more relaxed than others in the class. The supportive seats and rear air vents ensure everyone remains comfortable. Exterior noise can be intrusive, but you will never have to raise your voice to converse with passengers.” - Edmunds

Design

The interiors too carry the same idea of simplicity and neatness. It hasn’t changed much over the years except for the infotainment screen growing larger. The design is familiar with an 8-inch infotainment screen in the center of the dashboard. The AC vents and the climate controls sit on top and bottom of the screen respectively.

Fit and finish of the interiors are really nice although there are some cheap bits of plastics used here and there. There’s a small digital screen in between the analog dials in the instrument cluster. The analog dials itself look quite cool. The flat bottomed steering wheels also feels very good to hold.

Seating

Models

Volkswagen Golf GTI

Honda Civic Type R

Subaru WRX STI

Volkswagen Golf R

Passenger capacity

5

4

5

5

Front (cu.ft)

Head room

38

39.3

39.8

38.4

Shoulder room

56

56.9

55.6

55.9

Leg room

41.2

42.3

43.3

41.2

Rear (cu.ft)

Head room

38

37.4

37.1

38.1

Shoulder room

54

55

54.2

53.9

Leg room

35.6

35.9

35.4

35.6

The seats in the Golf GTI are quite comfortable. They come wrapped in leather and are heated and cooled as well. There is also a no cost option of wrapping your seats in Clark cloth striped upholstery which are classic Golf GTI signatures. The rear seats have central arm rests and AC vents as well. However, legroom in the rear seats are a little low compared to its rivals but the seats themselves are very comfortable. Also, seating five may be a problem because the central tunnel is quite high.

Infotainment System

The infotainment system is pretty easy to use. The screen size is 8-inches with really good graphics. It has all the features you’d ever require in present times including a surround view camera system. The system is a touch screen unit and it responds to commands adequately without any delay. Android Auto and Apple CarPlay comes as standard which is a great boon.

Cargo Capacity

Models

Volkswagen Golf GTI

Honda Civic Type R

Subaru WRX STI

Volkswagen Golf R

Cargo Capacity

17.4

26

12

22.8

The Golg GTI does not have the largest cargo area. At 17.4 cu.ft, the Golf GTI has the third largest boot after the Civiv Type R and the Golf R. The Subaru WRX has the least cargo area at 12 cu.ft. The boot in the GTI is large enough to hold at least four large bags for a family.

2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback Exterior

Design

The Golf GTI is a smart looking car, yet quite understated about the performance it packs. The new LED headlamps are sharp and distinct. The bumper is quite bold housing the fog lamps and quite aggressive series of horizontal strakes along with a unique grille mesh pattern. The side profile remains very simple and plain but the 18-inch wheels add some contrast to the design. The five spoke 18 inch wheels have been very tastefully designed.

The rear of the car also remains fairly simple with LED tail lamps, dual chrome tipped exhaust pipes and a mild diffuser. Save from the GTI badge on the grille and the aggressive bumper, it’s much understated about the design. The Rabbit edition still comes with some visual perks such as unique blackened wheels, black rear spoiler and some Rabbit badging.

It has the classic Golf like look and the designers haven’t messed around much with it. Honestly, we like it that way. Bearing clean lines and a neat profile, the Golf will always remain a classy hot-hatch.

Exterior Dimensions

Models

Volkswagen Golf GTI

Honda Civic Type R

Subaru WRX STI

Volkswagen Golf R

Curb weight (lbs.)

3062

3117

3391

3300

Length(in)

168.0

179.4

180.9

168.4

Width(in)

70.8

73.9

70.7

70.8

Height(in)

57.8

56.5

58.1

56.5

Ground clearance (in)

5.1

5.1

4.9

4.8

Wheelbase (in)

103.6

106.3

104.3

103.5

Track width (in) F/R

60.6/59.7

63/62.7

60.2/60.2

60.7/59.7

The Golf GTI is pretty compact with its dimensions. It’s the lightest vehicle in the competition. It is also the shortest in length. The compact dimension really help the nimble character of the car. However, the compact dimensions translates to a comparatively smaller interior.

Exterior Features

  • LED Daytime Running Lights
  • Bright-red horizontal strip visually connects the headlights to a revised grille
  • Red-painted brake calipers
  • Unique mesh pattern grille
  • Bespoke GTI wheels
  • Subtle side skirts
  • Chrome tipped exhaust pipes
  • Unique rear diffuser
  • Rear Spoiler

2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback Safety

The 2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI has not been tested by either NHTSA or IIHS and we cannot offer you their ratings yet. However, the Golf GTI is well loaded with quite a lot of safety features and that is quite reassuring. The 2018 model of the Golf GTI had received a 5 star rating from the NHTSA, particularly because of the exterior design which can absorb collisions really well.

Safety Features

  • Forward Collision Warning
  • Autonomous Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Monitoring (Front Assist)
  • Blind Spot Monitor
  • Rear Traffic Alert
  • Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC)
  • Lane Keeping System (Lane Assist)
  • Park Distance Control
  • Parking Steering Assistant (Park Assist)
  • High Beam Control (Light Assist)

2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback Competition

Volkswagen Golf GTI vs Honda Civic Type R

The Honda Civic Type R is an extremely capable car. Yes, you may not be fond of it’s over styling but you certainly cannot miss it. It’s surprising how it can balance between sporty handling and comfortable ride so drastically. The engine is powerful and it pulls like a beast. However it does not sound quite as good as you’d think. It’s a great track machine.

The Golf GTI on the other hand is a great daily driver. It is perfect to take to shopping and then go mad on a twisty mountain road. It’s much understated inside out than the Type R and is much easier to live with every day. The choice comes down to your preference. If you want a sporty daily driver with lots of practicality at a much lesser price, it’s the Golf GTI. If you want drama, outright performance and a lot more power for some extra money, it’s the Civic Type R.

Volkswagen Golf GTI vs Subaru WRX STI

The Subaru WRX STI is a thoroughbred rally car. It has extremely capable driving dynamics and its all-wheel drive gives you great traction off the road. It looks like a proper old-school sports sedan with that huge wing. The interiors are functional but do not feel much special.

It also has a very stiff suspension, low fuel economy, less cargo space and the cabin isn’t as refined as a lot of noises seem to filter through. The WRX STI is a pretty performance focused car. If that is your only priority, the WRX STI is a great buy. For every other person, the Golf GTI is the best every day car that also promises bucket loads of thrill.

Volkswagen Golf GTI vs Volkswagen Golf R

The Golf R and the Golf GTI are essentially the same cars except that the engine in the Golf R produces some more power and hence performance is better. There is very little visual difference, the interiors are the same, and the handling characteristics are the same too in that they both are great daily drivers balancing both worlds very well.

However, in spite of the extra power and performance that the Golf R packs in, it does not justify such a hefty premium over the GTI of around $13,000. The GTI already is all the car one should need and while the Golf R does it better, it is not worth so much money. The Golf GTI is the better buy among the two as it’s very usable and really very satisfying.

2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback Final Verdict

The Golf GTI is one of those performance cars that you not only buy from your heart but also from your mind. It’s a good looking, smart hatchback with good feature loaded interiors that could take you shopping or drop your children to school.

Also, on your way back, when no one’s watching, you’d want to take a slight detour to find yourself that perfect piece of road and let this car unravel itself around you from its understated stature. And boy, it really is rewarding then. It’s all the car one would need to keep yourself and your family happy and at the price it’s offered, its great bangs for your bucks.