Ever wanted the handling of a GTI, but with the frugality of a diesel? Well Volkswagen hopes that its new GTD will sate your desires.
As its name suggests the key change between GTI and the GTD is the GTI's 155kW/280Nm turbocharged petrol engine giving way for a more powerful version of the 2.0-litre turbo-diesel seen elsewhere in the Golf range. In GTD trim the engine puts out 125kW of power and 350Nm of torque to the front wheels.
The GTD completes the performance benchmark of zero to 100km/h in 8.1 seconds. Although that's quite a bit slower than the GTI's 6.9-second time, the GTD makes up for this by being more frugal and outputting less carbon dioxide. The GTI drinks 7.7L/100km equating to 180g of CO2 per km, while the GTD drinks 5.5L/100km and emits 145g/km.
Equipment levels are pretty much line-ball with the GTI. There's VW's Extended Electronic Differential Lock to help put the power to ground, stability control, seven airbags, cruise control, and automatic headlights and wipers. Visually, both the GTD and GTI feature 17-inch alloy wheels (albeit with different wheel designs), lowered suspension, fog lights, and a more aggressive front bumper and grille (the GTI has stripes in its, while the GTD makes do with chrome slats).
The standard sound system has eight speakers, a 6.5-inch touchscreen, six-CD stacker, SD card slot, auxiliary jack and steering wheel controls. Satellite navigation, USB iPod connectivity and Bluetooth hands-free are all extra cost options.
Unlike the Golf, the Golf GTD is only available in Australia as a five-door model. The six-speed manual GTD retails for AU$39,290, while one equipped with VW's six-speed dual-clutch "automatic" will set you back AU$41,790.
That's AU$300 more than the three-door GTI, but AU$1200 less than the five-door GTI. All prices include GST, but exclude dealer and statutory charges.