2018 Volkswagen Golf GTI vs 2018 Volkswagen Golf R

2018 Volkswagen Golf GTI vs 2018 Volkswagen Golf R

When it comes to performance, the thought is typically the more, the merrier. Those who aren’t interested in fast acceleration and a thrilling ride would rather save some money and go with a practical, everyday car that doesn’t break the mold. The question isn’t whether we want more, but whether or not we can afford it. Comparing the 2018 Volkswagen Golf GTI vs 2018 Volkswagen Golf R, you’re likely wondering whether or not it is truly worth the upgrade from the GTI to the R. This is especially complicated because the Golf GTI comes in three trims, while the Golf R comes in just the one. A base trim GTI is quite a bit less expensive, but a top trim GTI is similar in many ways. How are you to decide?

2018 Volkswagen Golf GTI


2018 Volkswagen Golf R

$26,415 Starting MSRP $39,785
220hp/258 lb-ft of torque Performance specs 292hp/280 lb-ft of torque
Unavailable 4Motion AWD Standard
Available DCC Adaptive Damping Standard

2018 VW Golf R Performance Specs

When you look at the basic engine specs of the Golf GTI, these are not changing whether you choose the base trim or the top-tier Autobahn. Neither is the fact that 4Motion AWD is unavailable. At the end of the day, these might be considered the key differences between the 2018 Volkswagen Golf GTI and Golf R because many of the features are available for the golf GTI and you can still save a few thousand dollars if you don’t’ find the extra horsepower or stability to be complete necessities.

Key performance features offered on both models include the VAQ limited-slip differential lock and the DCC adaptive chassis control system. Keep in mind that neither of these are found on the base trim, so if you’re hoping to save the full MSRP difference, you won’t. A true comparison would be the Autbahn vs Golf R because the Golf R comes in just one complete, upscale package for 2018.

That said, if you think the price difference is the key deciding factor, you’d be looking at just under $5,000 savings. Is it worth it for reduced horsepower and no available 4Motion? The best way to decide is to take a test drive and see how both models feel on the road. Schedule your visit here at Armstrong Volkswagen.