If there is a car that defines the hot hatch segment, it is the Volkswagen Golf GTI. The GTI has been around since 1976. In that time, it has gained a cult following. The release of the latest, eighth generation, Volkswagen Golf GTI is sure to excite that following. Alongside its release, Volkswagen has also revealed details on the GTD and GTE varients, aligning all three closer than ever before.

At the heart of the Golf GTI package is an evo4 version of the familiar EA888 engine. The 2.0-litre turbocharged, 4-cylinder engine gets 245 hp and 370 Nm of torque. It comes coupled with a 6-speed manual gearbox, or the 7-speed dual-clutch gearbox as an option. Unlike the rest of the petrol options, the GTI is pure petrol power.

In contrast, the GTD gets a 2.0-litre, four-cylinder turbocharged diesel engine with 200 hp and 400 Nm. The GTD is available exclusively with the 7-speed dual-clutch gearbox. The engine gets a twin dosing SCR system with dual AdBlue injection for supreme emissions.

The GTE gets the most complicated setup. A combination of a 150 hp, 1.4-litre turbocharged petrol engine and a 95 hp electric motor makes for an output of 245 hp, identical to that of the new GTI. The GTE now carries an all-electric range of 60 km.

The GTI makes a shift to LED headlights, a red bar across the front identifies the GTI from other Golf variants. The GTE gets a blue bar and the GTD gets a silver bar.

Volkswagen has worked hard on the lighting, the daytime running lights are now activated when the driver approaches with the key, there is an LED strip in the headlight which mirrors the red line and the radiator grille is illuminated for the first time.

The GTI comes equipped as standard with 17-inch Richmond alloy wheels, unique to the GTI. Optional 18-inch or 19-inch rims are available at additional cost. The brake callipers are painted red and the GTI carries badging on the side of the wong.

At the back, the GTI badging moves to the centre of the rear, an extended roof spoiler combines with black edging around the rear window for a sporty look. The GTI has one tailpipe on the left and one on the right, they sit either side of the diffuser. The GTD has a double tailpipe on the left, and there is no visible tailpipe on the GTE.

Inside, traditional GTI characteristics remain. The sports steering wheel features three silver double spokes, the manual gearbox gets a golf-ball style design and the seats, a tartan cloth covering.

The Innovision Cockpit is fitted to the GTI, a combination of 10.25-inch Digital Cockpit and the 10-inch navigation system. The background lighting, which also comes as standard, features 30 combinations.

Standard tech includes Lane Assist lane-keeping system, Front Assist Autonomous Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Monitoring, XDS electronic differential lock and Car2X. DDC adaptive chassis control also arrives as standard equipment with the usual Individual, Eco, Comfort and Sport modes.

The press release makes it clear that the information is released pre-production. Costing an availability has yet to be announced. Performance figures are also missing from the release and so we expect to hear more from Volkswagen very soon!

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