Words and Photographs by Gero Lilleike
Just the other day, out of the blue, a friend hooted outside my house. I opened my front door and a sexy blue 2014 VW Golf 7 R, the most powerful production Golf yet, stood before me for the first time. ‘Can I drive?’ I asked. The answer from the driver’s seat was a powerful ‘No, just get in’. I smiled and happily headed for the passenger seat. I had to ask.
The new 2014 VW Golf 7 R was literally launched in South Africa a few weeks ago, so this was expected to be a very special experience, even though I wouldn’t get my hands on that flat-bottomed steering wheel. You can’t have everything, you know.
First Impressions Count – The 2014 VW Golf 7 R shows its teeth
I stepped in and was instantly overwhelmed by a smart, comfy interior bathed in blue ambient lighting. Unlike anything I had ever seen before, this was the highly-anticipated 2014 VW Golf 7 R, in all its glory before my eyes. The leather sport seats felt remarkably genuine and the clean surfaces around me refreshed my senses. The lights and gadgetry however, hinted at something a little more sinister lurking beneath its skin. Then, I heard a distinct rumble.
The uprated 2-litre TSI four-cylinder turbo petrol engine came to life, growling under its breath. Bred with 206kW of pure muscle available from 5500rpm and 380Nm of vicious torque dripping from its fangs at 1800rpm, the 2014 VW Golf 7 R is a hungry wolf wrapped in wool.
The hunt begins with a bang
In Normal Mode, the 2014 VW Golf 7 R seemed to tolerate urban roads with utter confidence, but I could sense a certain frustration within this beast, possibly a longing to stretch its legs and hunt on the open road. At standstill and with an empty highway stretched out before us, my good friend switched into Sport Mode and suddenly the atmosphere dropped a gear. In full-blown hunt mode, the wolf piped up quickly and with eyes locked on the clock, my heart rate felt like it doubled instantly as I took a deep breath. About six intense seconds later we were clocking 120km/h and I finally had a chance to grab my breath, my body tingling all over.
VW claims 0-100km/h in 4.9 seconds which is pretty fast for a layman like me, but as hungry as it is for speed, the new VW Golf 7 R isn’t as thirsty as you’d think. It’s said to average at about 7-litres/100km which is excellent considering what it thumps out on command and only expels 159g of CO2 every kilometer. Not bad, hey.
The hunt ends tragically
The new 2014 VW Golf 7 R delivered me home safely but I was reluctant to get out. I just didn’t want to. ‘Can I drive?’, I asked again, pushing my luck once more. My friend gave me a devilish laugh and replied, ‘No, get out’. I laughed and about six seconds later, the sexy blue 2014 VW Golf 7 R was gone, and I was left to ponder on my dreams, in silence.