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German auto manufacturer, Volkswagen could launch their iconic Golf GTI hot hatchback. The company is currently evaluating the Indian market for performance models, and believes that there are enthusiast buyers in the hot-hatch segment, according to Autocar India.
The India-bound VW Golf GTI might be brought in through the Completely Built Unit (CBU) route by the company. The Volkswagen Golf GTI when launched will be available in limited numbers only. If the company confirms the Golf GTI for India market, we expect the hot-hatch to be launched by the end of 2020.
The Indian government has recently revised its import rules to support auto manufacturers in bringing their vehicles through CBU or Completely Knocked Down (CKD) route.
The new import rule will enable companies to import 2500 vehicles through the CKD and CBU channels every year, without the need for homologation. However, the vehicles being imported should meet the international automotive homologation standards.
VW Golf GTI is currently available in two variants with the same 2.0-litre petrol-engine. The engine featured on the standard model produces 240bhp and 370Nm of torque. While the engine on TCR variant produces 285bhp and 380Nm of torque.
The company is said to be currently working on the 8th-gen Golf GTI which was spotted testing at the Nürburgring race track recently. The upcoming Golf GTI will be available with the same engine featured in the current models.
Volkswagen has already launched the performance variant of their entry-level Polo hatchback in India. The Polo GTI was introduced back in 2016, and was targeted at enthusiast buyers. The car received great response in the beginning, but was then discontinued in 2018 due to low demand.
The company believes that the major reason for the downfall in the hot-hatch's demand was the three-door GTI version being launched in India. Now though, VW will bring the Golf GTI five-door variant in India, as the three-door market is very niche.
The company is evaluating this move, after receiving a great response with the launch of Skoda Octavia RS. The limited-run performance five-door sedan was an instant hit among enthusiasts and registered some good sales numbers.
The Golf GTI when launched, will become the company's top-of-the-line model in India. We expect Volkswagen to price the Golf GTI at around Rs 40 lakhs. In the meanwhile, Volkswagen recently launched GT line variants of the Polo, Ameo and Vento — here are all the details.
Thoughts About Volkswagen Evaluating Golf GTI For India
India has seen a huge change in buyer preferences for automotive products. This is due to a huge number of enthusiasts looking for a performance machine from the manufacturers. In response to this Volkswagen had launched the Polo GTI, Ford came up with the Figo S and Tata launched the JTP performance variants of the Tiago and Tigor models.
With the possibility of Golf GTI entering India, auto enthusiasts can rejoice and look forward to a 290bhp hot-hatch which can trump most cars on Indian roads.