Volkswagen have unveiled a race going version of their Jetta TSI, set to campaign in an exclusive VW racing series.
The Jetta TSI Sport made its debut at the Autosport International racing car show at Birmingham's NEC, taking centre stage on the British Racing and Sports Car Club stand. The new machine will take to the track for the first time on Easter Monday (24 March) in the opening round of the Hankook-backed Volkswagen Racing Cup, at Oulton Park.
Boosting 172kW from 1.4-litres
In road-going form the Jetta's 1.4-litre, 16-valve engine produces 127kW, but the engineers at Volkswagen Racing UK, with the help of their technology partners at Superchips, Milltek Sport and Turbo Dynamics, have boosted this to 172kW.
The TSI features an engine-driven supercharger and an exhaust gas powered turbocharger, arranged in series; the supercharger operates at lower engine speeds and the turbo cuts in as revs rise.
The result is excellent driveability and performance throughout the rev range, with no turbo lag and high maximum torque. The power unit was named Best New Engine of 2006 in the International Engine of the Year Awards, and produces startling performance despite its diminutive capacity.
Ensuring optimum performance on the demanding tracks it is sure to encounter - including the legendary Outlon Park - the Jetta TSI Sport has had its ABS brakes disabled and replaced with 360mm VWR items. With a stripped down interior and roll-cage fitted the Sport weighs only 1223kg.
It's not only in Britain that the Jetta will be cutting a dash this season - the Sports Car Club of America is to stage a championship for turbodiesel-powered machines. The Jetta TDI Cup will launch in May.
In the UK, the Jetta TSI Sport will be raced by selected motoring and motor sport journalists. The Volkswagen Racing Cup expands to 14 rounds this year and will once again be the chief saloon-race support to the British Formula 3 and British GT Championships.