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  • performancedrive.com.au

2017 Volkswagen Up! GTI officially unveiled

The 2017 Volkswagen Up! GTI has been officially revealed in Europe. With a six-speed manual transmission and a compact and lightweight body, Volkswagen labels the car as a tribute to the original Golf GTI of 1976, albeit 136kg heavier.

Power comes from a 1.0-litre turbo triple as previously anticipated, with 85kW/200Nm. Peak power occurs at 5000-5500rpm, with direct injection and 250bar fuel system helping feed the turbocharged mill’s power. There is also a particulate filter. Torque is delivered in a rich curve, between 2000-3500rpm, compared with 140Nm at 5000rpm delivered in the Mk1 Golf GTI.

Like its Polo and Golf GTI brothers, the 997kg Up! GTI scores plaid trim, red brake calipers, front and rear spoilers and alloy wheels, 17-inches in this case. Ride is lower by 15mm. Other standard equipment includes a six-speaker audio system, leather handbrake and LED ambient lighting.

The Up! Was withdrawn from sale in Australia due to no automatic transmission availability. With a single-clutch automated manual the only option in Europe, this, unfortunately looks set to continue. But if VW had the guts to bring the car to Australia, we’re sure there’d be plenty of fans.

Kia is also expecting to be working on a hotter Picanto compact hatch. With more A-segment hot hatches, Holden could even be goaded into making a sporty Spark.

Mitchell is a contributing journalist and features writer at PerformanceDrive. He has been a passionate petrol-head from a very young age. He is excited by the future of the industry, and considers himself as a bit of a fanatic when it comes to the technical aspects of cars. He is also fascinated by new cars that are popping up in developing markets.