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Golf GTI turns 35

Birthday wrapping: The Golf GTI Edition 35 gets new alloy wheels and LED lights to differentiate it from the less-powerful standard model.

More power and cosmetic tweaks for yet another special-edition Golf GTI

12 May 2011

VOLKSWAGEN has unveiled a more powerful version of its Golf GTI hot hatch to mark the now-iconic model’s 35th birthday, and Volkswagen Australia has confirmed a limited number will be available here before the end of this year.

The Edition 35 produces 173kW – up 18kW on the standard model – from the same 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine, though Volkswagen remains tight-lipped on any changes to performance or economy.

The main visual differences on the Edition 35 are the unique 18-inch “Watkins Glen’ light-alloy wheels, a subtly revised front bumper and the addition of LEDs in the headlights and tail lights. Special ‘35’ edition badges also appear on the wing panels and door sill plates.

Inside, partial leather seats with ‘35’ logos stitched into the centre panel replace the standard model’s ‘Jacky’ tartan cloth seat trim, while the golf ball-style gearstick pays homage to the Mk1 GTI.

It is not yet clear whether the Edition 35 will be available in both three-door and five-door variants – the first official pictures are of the three-door – or whether it will be offered with both manual and DSG automatic transmissions.

3 center imageThe anniversary model will start at 30,425 euros (A$40,430) in Germany - a hike of 3150 euros (A$4190) over the standard three-door manual variant there. European sales will commence from mid-June.

The three-door GTI manual starts from $38,990 before on-roads in Australia.

The Edition 35 will make its public debut at the annual Wörthersee show in Austria – the same show at which the GTI ‘Adidas’ and ‘Excessive’ special-editions made their respective debuts last year.

The GTI Adidas, a collaboration between Volkswagen and the German sportswear giant, was launched in Australia at last year’s Sydney motor show and gained features such unique 18-inch alloy wheels, bi-Xenon headlights, the golf ball gearstick and Adidas-badged seats.

Volkswagen is no stranger to releasing special-editions of its hot hatch hero to celebrate anniversary milestones, having previously released Edition 20, Edition 25 and Edition 30 variants with engine, interior and exterior tweaks.

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