2021 VW Golf GTI: Is This An Early Prototype For Hardcore TCR Model?

The upcoming VW Golf GTI TCR is expected to offer 300 PS and a mechanical LSD.

Exciting times for VW Golf GTI lovers as our spy photographers have snapped what looks like the Mk8’s range-topping TCR model for the first time.

The regular 2021 VW Golf GTI has already been spied and even leaked, but this may be our first look at the upcoming Golf GTI TCR. Mind you, at first glance this black prototype seems to be a normal GTI but things are more complicated than that.

There are several details that hint at it being the top-of-the-line Golf GTI TCR. For starters, this prototype sits lower than other GTIs we’ve seen VW testing, which means it packs a more performance-focused suspension. The drilled front brake discs are the second clue, and the larger wheels in a new design don’t look like standard GTI material either.

The oval tailpipes fitted to this prototype seem larger than the round ones we’ve seen on the standard 2021 Golf GTI so this further supports the TCR theory. Additionally, our photographers say the intercooler hidden behind the front bumper appears slightly bigger than on the standard GTI but we can’t really confirm if that’s the case.

If this is indeed the Golf GTI TCR, it’s an early prototype because it lacks some of the visual bells and whistles the production model will definitely have. We’re talking about elements like a bigger roof spoiler than in these photos, a rear diffuser and generally a more aggressive body kit. If the previous Golf GTI TCR is anything to go by, the interior will see changes as well including standard bucket seats, carbon fiber trim and more.

Expect the upcoming VW Golf GTI TCR to pack around 300 PS (296 HP) from a 2.0-liter TSI turbo-four engine, delivered to the front wheels via a DSG dual-clutch automatic transmission working with a locking front differential.

There’s no word on the availability of a six-speed manual gearbox for now. You will find one in the regular Golf GTI, though, along with the optional DSG. The standard model is expected to offer 245 PS (242 HP) and remain, as always, the sweet spot of the lineup. VW will unveil the all-new Golf GTI at the Geneva Motor Show in March.

Photo credits: CarPix for Carscoops

To Top