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Having been on sale since 1976, Volkswagen is commemorating 45 years of the Golf GTI with the release of a special edition variant, the Golf GTI Clubsport 45.

15 Mar 2021 | International News : Germany

In the summer of 1976, Volkswagen launched a distinctively sporty Golf onto the market, the GTI. At that time no one at Volkswagen had any idea that the Golf GTI would eventually become the world's most successful compact sports car.

But that is exactly what happened - from production of the 5,000 vehicles that were originally planned to well in excess of 2.3 million units today. Now Volkswagen is marking the 45th birthday of this iconic car with an anniversary model, the Golf GTI Clubsport 45. Extensive individualisation makes the Clubsport 45 a ready-made collector's item.

The Golf GTI Clubsport 45 has special 19-inch alloy wheels finished in high-gloss black and '45' lettering on the side sill
Even the 'standard' Golf GTI Clubsport is technically distinct from the standard Golf GTI, with features including a 54bhp increase over the standard GTI's turbocharged engine and the Special driving mode for race tracks. Visual highlights of the Clubsport include larger air intakes, a specially designed open roof spoiler to allow improved airflow and a separate sport exhaust system.

The Clubsport 45 is ready to take to the road with more individual customisation than ever before. The exterior boasts a striking black roof complete with black roof spoiler, in homage to the black-framed rear window of the first Golf GTI.

With the Race package, which is available as standard and exclusive to the Golf GTI Clubsport 45, equipment includes 19-inch Scottsdale alloy wheels in a high-gloss black finish, with a narrow accent pinstripe detail in Tornado Red. The Race package also includes a sport exhaust system and removal of the 250km/h limiter.

Lettering on the side sill panel and the '45' added to the lettering on the boot lid underpin the impression of dynamism. The Clubsport 45 series also features IQ.Light LED matrix headlights with the red trim strip which is included on all GTI models.

The interior of the Golf GTI Clubsport 45 receives premium sport seats at the front and a '45' badge at the six o'clock position on the steering wheel
The interior of the anniversary model also showcases classic GTI insignia. Embellishments include GTI lettering on the backrests of the front premium sport seats. A '45' adds character to the multi-function sport steering wheel at the centre spoke.

With the new Golf GTI Clubsport 45, Volkswagen is adding a new chapter to the high-performance GTI versions released. The original Golf GTI Clubsport was launched in 2016, on the 40th birthday of the Golf GTI. That first member of the Clubsport series achieved 261bhp and could temporarily deliver 286bhp with an overboost function.

That same year also saw the arrival of the Golf GTI Clubsport S, which had 306bhp. In autumn 2020, Volkswagen released the new Golf GTI Clubsport, a car which featured the first-ever instance of the standard electromechanical front-axle locking differential control being integrated into the driving dynamics manager network - as does the newly launched Clubsport 45, setting a new benchmark in driving dynamics.

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