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Volkswagen Golf GTI in high supply
VW lands hundreds of Golf hot hatches in anticipation of surging demand
2 Nov 2009
VOLKSWAGEN has stocked up on the new Golf GTI in anticipation of a strong sales run on the new model that went on sale on October 31.
Volkswagen Group Australia (VGA) predicts the new, better-value model may account for up to 30 per cent of Golf volume, a rise of five per cent over the previous car’s lifecycle average.
Speaking at the launch of the new-generation GTI in Victoria last week, outgoing VGA marketing manager Peter Dierks said the days of yearlong waiting lists – which resulted in widespread customer frustration – were over.
To back up this statement, the company has ensured ample supply of both the three and five-door GTI variants at dealerships.
For more than two years from the last GTI’s May 2005 release, many people who had placed orders had to wait 12 months or more as Volkswagen struggled to meet global demand for the iconic hot hatch.
From top: VW Golf GTI, Golf GTI interior, VW Golf GTD.
This time, the company has anticipated an expected large order bank from new and existing GTI buyers who have held off for the arrival of the improved Mk6 version.
“We won’t see delays (this time),” Mr Dierks said.
“We have 650 cars already in the country, with 400 GTIs delivered to the dealers, so everything is in place for a proper launch. And we have an extra 200 cars on the water.” Most of these cars are the five-door hatch version (which makes up about 90 per cent of all GTI sales), with more than half fitted with the DSG dual-clutch sequential manual gearbox.
Mr Dierks said waiting times for the GTI were as per the rest of the Golf range, stretching to about three months for specific-order vehicles.
Since 2005, almost 9000 Mk5 GTIs have found homes in Australia.
Buoyed by the success of the series, VGA is also set to release the recently unveiled Golf GTD late this year or in the first quarter of 2010, although no confirmation has been given.
It uses a 2.0-litre twin-cam 16-valve four-cylinder common-rail turbo-diesel engine delivering 125kW of power at 4200rpm and 350Nm of torque from 1750 to 2500rpm.
The GTD boasts the same lowered and tuned chassis as the 155kW/280Nm GTI, as well as the choice of a six-speed manual or six-speed DSG dual-clutch gearbox.
It will serve as a replacement for the less-performance-orientated Mk5 Golf GT Sport TDI sold in Australia for about 18 months from August 2007, which ran the standard Mk5 Golf chassis tune.
Meanwhile, from June next year, the Golf R will join the GTI/GTD duo as the range flagship.
Usurping the existing Mk5 R32, it will ditch the six-cylinder engine for Volkswagen’s high-performance EA113 2.0-litre TSI four-cylinder petrol unit pumping out 199kW and 350Nm, but will keep a variation of the 184kW/320Nm R32’s Haldex part-time all-wheel drive system in lieu of the GTI/GTD’s front-wheel drive layout.
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