Volkswagen has announced a new R version of its Scirocco coupé – and it’s the most powerful Scirocco ever.
Not only that, it’s also supposed to be VW’s most focused R model to date – the latest addition to a line-up of cars that includes the previous-shape Golf R32 and the current Passat R36.
But while those cars use big V6 petrol engines and four-wheel drive, the Scirocco R makes do with just four cylinders and front-wheel drive.
Compact engine, mighty punch
This is performance car ‘downsizing’ in action. The smaller engine and less complex drivetrain should help the Scirocco R return better fuel economy and lower emissions.
However, even with just 2.0 litres and a turbocharger, the Scirocco R produces 261bhp and 258lb ft of pulling power.
The engine is similar to that found under the bonnet of the Audi S3, rather than a modified version of the regular 197bhp Scirocco GT unit. That said, it has a larger turbo and a comprehensive range of upgrades for extra strength.
Volkswagen has not yet issued any performance data, but the Scirocco R is certain to be much quicker on from 0-62mph than the already nippy Scirocco GT, which completes the sprint in 7.2 seconds.
Sporty details, inside and out
Speaking of upgrades, the Scirocco R has also been treated to a full visual makeover. This includes a more aggressive front bumper – incorporating LED running lights – new gloss-black grille and mirrors, and side skirts. At the back there’s a new spoiler and diffuser, plus dark-tinted lights and oval exhausts.
R badges feature prominently, inside and out. The interior gets new sports seats, gloss-black trimmings, a stitched leather, flat-bottom steering wheel and blue needles for the instrument dials. Climate control, six airbags and stability control are standard, and the Scirocco R rolls on unique 18-inch alloy wheels.
XDS for extra control
Like all Sciroccos, the new R comes with VW’s Adaptive Chassis Control. This gives the driver control over the steering, suspension and throttle response settings, with a choice of Normal, Comfort and Sport settings.
Helping keep the performance further under control, the Scirocco R is also fitted with the same XDS electronic limited slip differential system as the latest Golf GTI. This distributes power to the front wheel with the most grip, improving handling safety and enjoyment.
The new Volkswagen Scirocco R goes on sale before the end of the year. Prices will be confirmed nearer to launch.
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