LET'S RACE: Volkswagen will be testing its new Motorsport Golf version during the rest of the 2015 Touringcar Racer International Series. Image: Volkswagen
Now Volkswagen Golf fans have a real reason to drive like racers - the automaker’s Motorsport department is developing its first racing car based on the seventh-generation Golf.
VW says the production-based, 242kW, concept car is intended to help the company evaluate the possibility of a customer racing programme from 2016.
To accelerate development of the superGolf it will be tested under competition conditions between now (July 2015) and the end of the 2015 season by running two cars in Round 8 of the Touring Car Racer International Series at the Red Bull Ring in Spielberg, Austria.
VW Motorsport director Jost Capito said: “The new TCR category is a promising platform for customer racing at National and International level. With exciting races, production-based technology, and reasonable costs it offers a new opportunity for private racing teams.
“When developing the Golf-based concept car we were able to fall back on the resources at VW to cut development time and costs. We will use the rest of the season to test the car in competition and evaluate a customer racing project from 2016.”
VW Motorsport has made the car's racing genes rather obvious: 18” racing wheel-rims, 40cm wider chassis than that of a production Golf, and a striking rear wing that shouts “ready-to-race”. There’s also an aerodynamic front splitter and a carbon rear wing. Safety components include a racing seat with head protectors (see image below), a racing safety cell, and a safety fuel tank in accordance with International Automobile Federation regulations.
UNDER THE BONNET
Power comes from a four-cylinder engine and through a direct-shift gearbox with steering-column shift paddles and its kept on the ground by a racing chassis.
VW Motorsport is developing the car in co-operation with the sport department at Seat, meaning it can call on that automaker’s experience with the Leon Cup Racer.
As with the VW Group’s production vehicles, the platform offers many synergies for race cars and reduces the cost of assembling and running such Touring Cars. The modified engine is the same unit used in the Golf R –a 2.0 turbowith direct fuel-injection. VW says the racing version makes 243kW/410Nm.
The concept car will be tested under competitive conditions at the remaining four race weekends of the international TCR series.
2015 Touring Car Racer International Series Calendar
July 11/12 - Austria (Spielberg)
September 19/20 - Singapore*
October 24/25 - Thailand (Buriram)
November 21/22- Macau (China)
* On support programme for the 2015 Formula 1 championship.