Combative Golf

We blinked and the i30 N became our hot-hatch benchmark. We blinked twice and the Megane RS280 lobbed for $44,990 (plus ORC). Now, Volkswagen is attempting to reclaim fast-fivedoor honours with a single-spec $45,490 (plus ORC) Golf GTI that includes a limited-slip diff and seven-speed dual-clutch equipment optional on the Renault plus 18-inch alloys, Golf R brakes, active cruise, AEB, blind-spot monitor, keyless auto-entry, tartan trim and Active Info Display all included. The formerly $41,490 six-speed manual with the 169kW/350Nm outputs is gone, sadly, but the now-standard 180kW/370Nm turbo-four tune could indeed bring GTI back to the fore.