Golf MK8 R Review From The Tuners
Posted by Sam Matthews on
VW has released the latest super hot hatch Golf R!
The Golf MK8 R has been eagerly awaited by many in the Volkswagen scene! Although the full range of the VW Golf Mk8 series has taken some time for people’s eyes to adjust to, the new models are coming in hot with the most popular being that of the range-topping Mk8 Golf R.
As one of the UK's first to receive the hot VW Golf and of course been recognised as one of the largest remapping companies in the nation, naturally, we wanted to give our perspective on what this new Golf R has to offer before we start the fun with building a range of hardware containing everything from custom exhausts, performance intercoolers and air filter kits.
Let's see what the exterior has to offer on this Volkswagen Golf R:
Without a doubt, there are significant changes compared to the Mk7 model with the stunning adaptive lights and a full under bonnet glow from the blue full-length light looking rather impressive. Options for the performance pack, which we didn’t opt for, provides 19-inch wheels, a switchable driving mode that includes a special Nurburgring mode developed specifically for Nordschliffe visitors and a stylish rear spoiler. Whilst we are sure this is a lot of fun, we are more interested in propelling the car forward at a faster rate than stock.
The Golf R carries over its handsome quad tailpipe on the exhaust, however, if you ask us, an addition of a Scorpion exhaust or Milltek exhaust would be far easier on the eye. But for those asking for something a touch deeper in tone the Cobra exhaust is the one for you.
Whilst this new VW Mk8 R looks great in its standard form, it will certainly benefit from the fine addition of the Maxton Design splitter kit and some fancy lowering springs, most likely from the Eibach springs catalogue.
The stoppers up front are huge so we are already looking to further push the Golf's stopping ability with the introduction of an EBC brakes package and some upgraded Goodridge brake lines.
Without a doubt, this new Golf Mk8 R is quick off the blocks, even from the Volkswagen factory. We are already lusting for a power increase from that of our VUDU Performance remap software. We are confident with just a stage 1 remap this car will be magnificent, however, we intend to go up to stage 2 remapping, then eventually stage 3 with a hybrid turbo as soon as the upgraded intercoolers and induction kits are available.
Check out this handy Remapping Stages blog post if you are not up to speed on the different remap stages that are available in today's tuning world. CLICK ME
The DSG gearbox in this car feels divine and the software updates do make it feel more precise over the older Golf Mk7 R. However, our engineers are already pushing to develop a lovely DSG remap for the cars onboard TCU, which will offer faster gear changes, full manual mode without upshift and increased clamping pressure on the DSG gearbox to ensure complete reliability.
Step inside a feel the future of the Golf R:
"Wow! This is a huge jump" was the first thing we said when we first entered the VW Golf's cabin, something that can only be compared to something NASA would bring to the table. We were met with an amazing infotainment system, a heated steering wheel, and luxurious bucket-style seats which will comfortably support you at top speed, assisted by the four-wheel-drive system, Haldex.
If we were to pick a few downsides to the interior of this Golf R it would most likely be the following.
The infotainment system is a major pain to work out, there are so many screens and variables, not to mention the different user and climate control settings that are mounted just under the touch-sensitive screen. So as you can imagine, the sensitive screen immediately picks up your hand and changes the screen you were not necessarily trying to alter.
Cloth version seats are somewhat like a bus seat with the blue cross-hatch, although the seat shape and feel is amazing, a recommendation we would make here is a change to a leather fabric or even a seat cover.
The steering wheel buttons, whilst these are fancy with a touch movement sensor and push action combined, its particularly frustrating when you’re pushing on or hitting a corner with some pace using the wheel as you should, we've found the outer extremities of your hands can push the buttons and change modes unexpectedly.
Final thoughts! Have VW smashed it out of the park with this new VW Golf R Mk8?
Absolutely. Forget some of the little niggles, the chassis, looks and speed of this car from factory standard make it a pleasure to own and we are extremely excited to start pushing the limits with our range of remaps and engineering trickery to push the 2.0-litre four-cylinder past its factory claimed 315 bhp and 310lb ft.
If you are interested in making the most of your Golf R Mk8, then look no further than AET Motorsport, we have a fully equipped garage facility with state of the art diagnostics and pressure-controlled dyno cell, with a four-wheel drive hub dyno and a team eager to help you with your tuning goals.