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Volkswagen honours Golf GTI with First Decade special
Worthersee festival enters 10th year, Volkswagen celebrates with Golf GTI concept
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24 May 2017
VOLKSWAGEN has uncovered the first GTI model to feature an electrified powertrain at this week’s Worthersee festival in Austria, with the one-off Golf GTI First Decade set to be the headline act at the annual GTI fan event.
Aptly named to commemorate the 10th year of the Worthersee event, the First Decade pairs a 300kW petrol engine – which powers the front wheels – with a rear axle-driving 48-volt electric motor that produces 12kW. When combined, these create an all-wheel-drive (AWD) setup.
Alternatively, the hot hatch can become a zero-emissions vehicle by disengaging the internal combustion powerplant altogether in favour of the electric motor only, which turns the vehicle into a rear-wheel drive (RWD).
For more conventional means, the First Decade can eschew its electric capabilities for petrol-only power thanks to its front-wheel-drive mode (FWD).
These three different driving systems can be managed via an app for PC tablets or the in-car infotainment system.
Regenerative braking helps charge the two rear-mounted batteries, which are generally employed as part of the electric FWD mode during parking manoeuvres and stop-and-go traffic.
Using a three-door Golf GTI as a donor car, the First Decade is strictly a two-seater as the rear pews have been deleted in favour of a 1690W high-end sound system – which includes 11 loudspeakers and one subwoofer.
Other interior changes extend to handmade sports seats wrapped in black Nappa leather and Alcantara, while the driver’s pew can be electrically controlled via the aforementioned tablet PC app. It also offers memory function with several back massage profiles.
Externally, the spicy Golf is painted in Atlantic Blue Metallic, and is contrasted with Satin Ocean Shimmer foils which “underline the racing design,” according to Volkswagen.
Furthermore, the rear spoiler is pinched from the limited Golf GTI 40 Years, while the high-gloss black 20-inch alloy wheels are highlighted by Satin Ocean Shimmer-coloured hubs.
Inside and out, the GTI is covered in ‘First Decade’ livery – including racing stripes from the bonnet to the roof – with plenty of highlights in different shades of blue. Moreover, the number 10 adorns the C-pillars and is used liberally throughout the cabin to signify the Worthersee special.
The Worthersee show car projects have become an annual tradition since the festival’s inception in 2008. Each year a group of young apprentices are tasked with the job of creating a bespoke vehicle that encapsulates the high level of vocational training that they receive at Volkswagen.
This year, 13 apprentices – five women and eight men – aged between 18 and 23 years old collaborated on the Golf GTI First Decade project, which took them less than nine months to complete.
“During the creation of their dream GTI, our apprentices learn about the complexity and future challenges of automobile production. They gain further experience in the use of digital technologies, the application of system technology and electro-mobility,” said Volkswagen head of automotive technology training Peter Christ.
“This is why we choose our strongest talents and offer them the opportunity to learn from experienced instructors and experts from the entire company at an early stage.”
A second show car project will also be presented this year – dubbed Golf GTE Estate impulsE – with 14 apprentices involved in its creation.
Thanks to a focus on e-mobility, they created a sporty, dynamic hybrid by increasing its battery size from 8.8 to 16.8kWh, which resulted in the wagon's pure-electric range being doubled.
Similar to the First Decade, the impulsE features a wild-looking paint job, as well as multi-coloured interior trimmings.
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