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This car has been superseded by a newer model, click here to go to the latest Volkswagen Golf R (14-16) review.

Parkers overall rating: 4.5 out of 5 4.5
Volkswagen Golf R (10-12) - rated 4.5 out of 5
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PROS

Storming performance, great usable power, aggressive looks, superbly agile and poised in corners, four-wheel-drive traction

CONS

Stiff ride, expensive even compared to a GTI

At a glance

New price £31,420 - £33,710
Used price £7,025 - £14,995
Used monthly cost £173 - £370
Fuel economy 33 - 33 mpg
Road tax cost £300
Insurance group 36 How much is it to insure?

PROS

Storming performance, great usable power, aggressive looks, superbly agile and poised in corners, four-wheel-drive traction

CONS

Stiff ride, expensive even compared to a GTI

Volkswagen Golf R rivals

While the Golf GTI is undoubtedly the most famous hot hatch around, there is an even more powerful model available - the Golf R. This model replaces the previous R32 from 2005 but the reason for the name-change is that it no longer uses a 3.2-litre V6 engine. Instead it's powered by a 2.0-litre turbocharged unit boasting an impressive 271bhp which gives it a 0-62mph time of just 5.7 seconds - more than a second quicker than the GTI.

It also features a more aggressive look with unique bumpers, LED running lights and bespoke 18-inch alloy wheels. On the road it's a real feel-good car with intoxicating pace, superb cornering ability and great steering. There are downsides, such as the rather stiff ride, but for enthusiasts, the Golf R offers something distinctly above and beyond the GTI.

Volkswagen Golf R rivals

Other Volkswagen Golf (2009 - 2016) models: