2021 Volkswagen Golf GTI Mk8, R-Line to be launched in Malaysia soon – ROIs open, CKD from the start?

This is the moment fans have been waiting for. Volkswagen Passenger Cars Malaysia (VPCM) has finally confirmed the arrival of the Golf Mk8, a full year after the Golf GTI was teased on its Instagram account.

Two variants have been confirmed for launch – the R-Line and GTI, and the duo will likely be locally assembled models right out of the gate. Our readers have spotted a registered GTI roaming about in Pekan, Pahang, which is home to Volkswagen’s Malaysian assembly plant. Now, the eighth-generation hatch debuted two years ago, so prepping the hatch for CKD is a reasonable explanation for the delay.

Time for a quick recap. The Golf Mk8 sits on the automaker’s MQB Evo platform, with motive power coming from the trusty EA888 2.0 litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine. It’s more powerful than the outgoing GTI Mk7.5, making 245 PS and 370 Nm of torque. For those wondering, that’s a 15 PS and 20 Nm increase, and on par with the Mk7.5 that’s fitted with the Performance Pack.

A seven-speed DSG dual-clutch transmission is expected to be the sole option here, channeling drive to the front wheels. The 0-100 km/h sprint is done in 6.2 seconds, and the 1,388-kg hatch will top out at an electronically limited speed of 250 km/h. The combined fuel consumption is 6.5 litres per 100 km.

Under the skin are MacPherson struts at the front, multi-link suspension at the rear, an XDS electronic differential lock and a sports suspension setup that’s 15 mm lower in ride height compared to the standard Golf. New for the Mk8 is Vehicle Dynamics Manager, a control system that coordinates the operation of the differential and the optional DCC adaptive dampers, though it remains to be seen how the GTI will be specced.

The more affordable R-Line variant, on the other hand, could ship with a newer 1.5 litre turbocharged four-potter, as opposed to the long-running 1.4L TSI lump familiar to Malaysians. Of course, you should take this with a pinch of salt, because nothing is confirmed as yet.

2021 Volkswagen Golf GTI Mk8, R-Line to be launched in Malaysia soon – ROIs open, CKD from the start?

This R-Line model should weigh around 1,250 kg, and the 1.5L engine is available in two states of tune – 130 PS/200 Nm and 150 PS/250 Nm. The latter is a likelier option for our market, and it too should come with a seven-speed DSG. In other markets, this engine is only paired with a six-speed manual, so again, only time will reveal its exact specifications.

There’s no word on the top dog Golf R just yet, but you should know that the AWD R packs 320 PS and 420 Nm, doing the century sprint in just 4.7 seconds. This one’s a mighty car that goes toe-to-toe against the Mercedes-AMG A 35 4Matic, and could be attractively priced should it be locally assembled. Drift mode, anyone?

Based on the photos seen on the website, both the Golf R-Line and GTI will get a fully digital instrument cluster, as well as a nice touchscreen infotainment display with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support. The R-Line also looks to be getting the fancy full LED IQ.Light tail lamps, so we encourage you to watch this space for more updates, as usual. For the time being, you may click here to register your interest for the latest Golf. So, who’s excited?

GALLERY: Volkswagen Golf GTI Mk8