If you’re Volkswagen, the one thing you don’t want to get wrong is the iconic Golf GTI.

They got it wrong with the launch of the Golf V back in 2003 and quickly went to a facing-
saving update.

Fast forward and the Wolfsburg-based carmaker has just taken the wraps off an electric
version of the GTI which it has confirmed it will go into production. Fingers crossed.

The world premiere of the electric concept took centre stage at this year’s IAA Mobility in
Munich, exactly 48 years after the debut of the first Golf GTI.

The four-door, five-seat ID. GTI Concept is based on the ID. 2all concept presented in

VW says the ID. 2all’s front-wheel-drive layout, clear design and powerful proportions
make it the perfect starting point. A front-axle differential lock, electronically controlled by a
Vehicle Dynamics Manager, is used just like the current GTI.

The letter “I” for injection in GTI now also stands for intelligence, in the form of the high-
performance drivetrain and chassis.

The Vehicle Dynamics Manager integrates the powertrain into the control system to an
even greater degree than ICE models. This is possible because the set-up of the electric
drive motor and its system can be varied almost infinitely, permitting a wide range of GTI

Using a newly developed GTI Experience Control in the centre console, the driver can
choose characteristics of the powertrain.

For the first time, it is possible to adjust the drive system, running gear, steering, sound,
and even the simulated shift points to reflect the style of historic GTIs – such as the
original 1976 GTI.

The concept is a compact 4104mm in length with a long 2600mm wheelbase framed by
large 20-inch aluminium alloys with 245/35 performance tyres. At the front, the concept
features the most significant and well-known exterior GTI feature: a red radiator grille
surround, although the aperture is much smaller than a petrol-powered car.

The red line is narrow but spans the entire width below the IQ.LIGHT LED matrix
headlights. A red GTI logo is integrated in the red line on the right.

The headlights themselves are framed by a horizontal LED bar. The Volkswagen badge is
illuminated in white.

The design of the GTI bumper is inspired by motorsports and is unique to this model.
It features a dominant black front splitter in the middle with an air intake above and typical
honeycomb structure, with two red motorsport-style towing eyes.

At the sides, vertical LED daytime running lights are located in the black-framed air
curtains that route the airflow to the wheel housings and then outwards to optimise
aerodynamic performance and cool the brakes.

A black roof spoiler is used instead of a black rear window frame and flanked by black air
guides at the sides, ensuring optimum downforce and minimum drag.

Under the spoiler, a narrow darkly tinted LED strip runs across the entire width of the
vehicle as a third brake light.

Only the frames of the two 3D tail light clusters and the Volkswagen badge are illuminated
in bright red.

A black area below the horizontal tail light cluster bar picks up on the original GTI’s black
bumper, with lettering integrated in the middle.

The ID. GTI Concept’s three-spoke steering is equipped with an airbag located slightly
lower down to create a visual bridge to the impact absorber in the GTI I, with an
illuminated 12 o’clock marker.

Since the automatic transmission is operated by a steering column switch, as in the ID.7,
the interior designers have transferred the golf ball shifter design to the multi-function GTI
Experience Control in the centre console.

Digital displays inside the concept vehicle allow new designs and functions, making it
possible to experience the GTI idea in more varied ways than before.

Fundamentally different cockpit looks are available for the instruments: the basic
configuration is a reflection of the current digital age that displays all conceivable
information and functions and a sporty GTI graphic design.

In Vintage mode, the 10.9-inch digital cockpit in front of the driver is transformed into the
instrumentation of a Mark II GTI, for example, becoming a perfect match for Mark I mode
that can be activated with the GTI Experience Control.

The designers and engineers have also taken a new approach with the augmented reality
head-up display, which projects data on to the windscreen the passenger as well as the

About Chris Riley

Chris Riley has been a journalist for 40 years. He has spent half of his career as a writer, editor and production editor in newspapers, the rest of the time driving and writing about cars both in print and online. His love affair with cars began as a teenager with the purchase of an old VW Beetle, followed by another Beetle and a string of other cars on which he has wasted too much time and money. A self-confessed geek, he’s not afraid to ask the hard questions - at the risk of sounding silly.
Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *