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VW claims 'king of the ring' with front-wheel-drive GTI Clubsport S

The Clubsport S, the most powerful GTI variant to date, will debut this week at the annual Wörthersee event in Austria.

Volkswagen

One hell of an adorable family photo.

Volkswagen

When the Nürburgring's infamous Nordschleife once again removed its speed limits this year, it was only a matter of time before automakers would return to attempt to capture records. Volkswagen's done exactly that this week, recording the fastest front-wheel-drive 'Ring time in its all-new Golf GTI Clubsport S.

The Clubsport S puts out about 306 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque. The curb weight is under 3,000 pounds (including the driver), 60 mph arrives in 5.8 seconds, and it comes standard with adaptive suspension with a special setting for the Nürburgring. The rear seat is missing, too. VW will produce just 400 of these cars, one quarter of which will stay in Germany.

VW's 7:49.21 lap time positively decimates the record of 7:50.63 set by a preproduction 2015 Honda Civic Type R, which itself bested the previous record of 7:54.36, held by the Renault Mégane RS. But Honda has a new Civic Type R in the works, set to debut in the next year or two, so it's very likely that the crown could once again land on a Japanese hood.

For you 'Ring junkies, here's the Clubsport's lap in its entirety: