The 2019 Golf R is available in one trim—Golf R with DCC® and Navigation.
A new special color program is available for model year 2019, offering 40 custom order colors—many of which are heritage colors from Volkswagen enthusiast models (the existing five colors remain available for series production). In addition, a Black Wheel package is now available, featuring 19-inch gloss-black aluminum-alloy wheels. Pricing for the 2019 Volkswagen Golf R with DCC and Navigation and a standard six-speed manual transmission starts at $40,395. The seven-speed DSG® automatic transmission starts at $41,495. The destination charge for all Golf R models is an additional $895.
Volkswagen R GmbH, Volkswagen’s motorsports division, has developed numerous unique exterior elements for the flagship Golf R.
The 2019 Golf R features a bumper design with large air inlets and a modified radiator grille that sports an “R” logo. The LED headlights feature LED daytime running lamps with a sharp visual signature unique to the Golf lineup, and the Adaptive Front-lighting System (AFS) turns the beams with the car’s steering inputs, helping to bolster visibility.
From the side, the Golf R is characterized by 19-inch aluminum-alloy wheels shod with 225/40 or 235/35 summer performance tires, black brake calipers with the “R” logo, body-color unique side skirts, “R” badges on the front fenders, and black painted door mirror caps.
At the rear, details that define the Golf R include LED taillights, an “R” design diffuser, four chrome tailpipes, and an “R” logo on the hatch.
The most powerful Golf is equipped with front sport seats with 12-way power adjustment for the driver and leather seating surfaces with “R” logo embroidering. A flat-bottom, leather-wrapped sport steering wheel integrates a chrome “R” logo on its lower cross bar, along with contrast stitching. The decorative inlays of the dashboard and door trim panels feature the “Carbon Touch” design; the doorsill kickplates, pedals, and foot support are designed with a stainless-steel look.
Additional standard features include: KESSY® keyless access with push-button start, Climatronic® automatic dual-zone climate control, heated front seats, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, and ambient lighting integrated in the door trim panels.
Behind the steering wheel of every 2019 Golf R sits the fully digital and interactive Volkswagen Digital Cockpit. With this system, all instruments are virtually implemented on the high-resolution 12.3-inch color screen. There are different information profiles which change the type of information displayed and the graphics in certain areas. Information can be integrated on driving, navigation and performance, or data from the entertainment system.
MIB II Infotainment. All 2019 Golf R models feature Volkswagen’s innovative MIB II touchscreen infotainment system. The display utilizes a capacitive-touch sensor (as in smartphone and tablet technology) rather than the more common resistive touchscreens that require pressure, enabling gesture controls like swiping and even pinch-zooming.
All Golf R models are equipped with a glass-covered 8.0-inch Discover Media system with navigation and a capacitive touchscreen display. It offers one USB port, Bluetooth® technology for compatible devices, SD card, JPEG viewer, SiriusXM® radio for a three month trial period, and HD Radio. It also has the ability to send and receive SMS text messages with Bluetooth with compatible phones and pair two phones simultaneously. The Discover Media unit offers 2.5D navigation, featuring one-shot voice destination entry, destination entry with search and auto-complete, and predicts possible destinations based on often used routes.
Volkswagen Car-Net. Volkswagen is committed to driving the development of more connected and intelligent vehicles, and the Car-Net® connectivity system is a major element in achieving that goal. Features available through Car-Net are divided into three key areas: “App-Connect,” “Security & Service,” and “Guide & Inform.”
Car-Net App-Connect smartphone integration for compatible devices is standard on all Golf R models. App-Connect offers users the ability to run select smartphone apps directly on the vehicle’s display through services such as Apple CarPlayTM, Android AutoTM and MirrorLink®.
Equipped on all Golf R models, Car-Net Security & Service is a suite of elements that provides security features and also allows owners to access their VW remotely through vw.com/carnet as well as a smartphone app.
Customers purchasing new Volkswagen models equipped with VW Car-Net Security & Service will receive a six-month trial subscription from Verizon Connect Inc. that starts on date of your Volkswagen purchase for no additional charge. To extend the benefits of this system after the trial, customers can choose from a number of payment options: One year for $199 and two years for $378, or month-to-month for $17.99, plus applicable taxes and fees. App-Connect can be used free-of-charge and is not included as part of the subscription-based services.
Available Car-Net Security & Service features include Automatic Crash Notification, which can help automatically notify an operator who can quickly contact first responders in the event of a collision; Manual Emergency Call, a feature that allows for quick access to customer specialists at the touch of a button; Roadside Assistance, for added peace-of-mind in the event of trouble on the road; and Stolen Vehicle Location Assistance, which uses Car-Net Security & Service to assist law enforcement with locating your vehicle in the event that it is stolen.
In addition, Car-Net Security & Service offers remote vehicle access, remote door lock and unlock, remote honk and flash of lights, last parked location information, and remote status check (doors and windows). Consumers will also be able to send a location from their connected smart device to the factory-installed compatible navigation system on select models. For consumers who prefer a more personal touch, Agent Destination Assist is also available.
Car-Net Security & Service also includes Family Guardian, which offers features such as: speed alert, which notifies you when the pre-determined maximum speed limit is exceeded; boundary alert, which lets you know when the vehicle has traveled outside of a pre-set virtual boundary; curfew alert, which notifies you if your vehicle is driven while curfew alert is on; and valet alert, which lets you know if your vehicle is driven more than 0.2 miles from the valet drop-off location.
Diagnostics and maintenance information is also available through Car-Net Security & Service. In addition to the vehicle’s warning and indicator lights, a Vehicle Health Report provides customers easy access to diagnostic information. When it’s time for scheduled service, Car-Net Security & Service not only notifies the customer, but provides a simple way to schedule a dealer visit.
The available VW Car-Net app for smartwatch (supports select Apple Watch® and Android WearTM operating systems) allows VW customers to control a host of Security & Service features and functions available through the iPhone® and AndroidTM apps and Customer Web Portal, directly from their wrist. Smartwatch wearers can keep tabs on their vehicle from afar, remotely locking and unlocking doors and viewing the status of doors, windows and sunroof (open or closed). These consumers can also find a parked vehicle more quickly, with a map of the current vehicle location, and get walking or driving directions to the vehicle. Drivers can check their fuel level and receive alerts with a compatible smartwatch.
Equipped on all Golf R models, Car-Net Guide & Inform offers an enhanced navigation and infotainment experience for VW consumers. Volkswagen has incorporated technologies that enhance existing navigation offerings while adding an additional level of information that empowers consumers. The in-vehicle navigation system features fuel prices, sports scores, movie information and weather data as part of the three-month SiriusXM Travel Link trial. VW customers will also enjoy real-time traffic information and a complimentary three-month SiriusXM Traffic trial.
The Golf R features one of the most powerful four-cylinder production engines in the world. The advanced EA888 four-cylinder turbocharged and direct-injection TSI® 2.0-liter engine puts out 288 hp (achieved with premium fuel), delivered at 5,500 rpm. Maximum torque is 280 lb-ft, available over a broad speed band from 1,800 to 5,500 rpm. To attain this output, the Golf R model’s 1,984-cc engine was subjected to a motorsports-style development program. The following components were modified or completely redesigned compared to the GTI engine: the cylinder head (together with exhaust valves, valve seats, and springs), pistons, high-pressure injection system, and turbocharger.
The Golf R model’s EA888 series engine has innovative engineering solutions such as water-cooled exhaust gas channels running through the cylinder head to the turbocharger to help efficiently reduce full-load fuel consumption. Thanks to its fully-electronic coolant control system, the Golf R TSI engine has more efficient thermal management with a reduced warm-up phase that help reduce frictional losses and fuel consumption. In addition, the TSI engine has variable valve timing on the intake and exhaust sides, as well as two-stage exhaust-valve lift. This helps enable greater control of the charge exchange process for improved performance and efficiency.
Golf R models with the seven-speed DSG automatic also feature a Stop-Start System designed to help save fuel in idle conditions; the motor restarts when the driver touches the accelerator.
When equipped with the six-speed manual transmission, the Golf R achieves an EPA-estimated fuel economy rating of 21 mpg in the city, 29 mpg on the highway, and 24 mpg in combined driving. When equipped with the optional seven-speed DSG dual-clutch automatic transmission, EPA-estimated fuel economy ratings are 23 mpg in the city, 30 mpg on the highway, and 26 mpg in combined driving.
4Motion All-wheel-drive System
All Golf R models are equipped with the 4Motion all-wheel-drive system. The latest-generation 4Motion system is activated before wheelspin occurs, helping eliminate traction losses. The system achieves this by using an advanced control function based on specific driving conditions. When operating under a relatively low load or when coasting, the front wheels are driven and the rear wheels are decoupled, helping to save fuel. However, the rear wheels can be engaged in fractions of a second whenever necessary via the center differential, which is activated by an electro-hydraulic oil pump.
A control unit continually calculates the ideal drive torque for the rear wheels and controls how much the multi-plate clutch should be closed by activating the oil pump. The oil pressure increases the contact pressure at the clutch plates in proportion to the torque desired at the rear axle. So, the amount of pressure applied to the clutch plates can be used to continuously vary the amount of torque going between the front and rear wheels, up to a maximum of 50 percent at the rear axle.
In addition to the center differential that acts longitudinally, electronic differential locks that are a function of the Electronic Stability Control (ESC) system act laterally. The system can briefly brake a wheel that is slipping, enabling uninterrupted and stable transfer of drive power to the wheel on the opposite side.
The Golf R features a sport suspension setup that is specifically tuned to the car. Compared to the base Golf, the ride height was dropped by 0.8 inches, which makes the Golf R even lower than the GTI, by an additional 0.2 inches. In the Golf R, the strut-type front suspension has a modified lower control arm and the multi-link rear suspension was enhanced with different tuning of the toe-link bearings.
The engineers designed the running gear of the Golf R for maximum driving fun combined with extraordinary stability and good long-distance comfort. Compared to the previous model, steering response was improved thanks to the progressive variable ratio steering rack. In addition, maximum attainable cornering speeds were significantly increased and understeer reduced.
With the progressive electric power-assisted steering system, there are 2.1 turns of the wheel (380 degrees) from lock to lock, compared with 2.75 turns (500 degrees) for less powerful Golf models. The new steering operates with a progressive gear ratio, perceptibly reducing steering effort in maneuvering and parking. On country roads with lots of bends, the driving experience can be enhanced because the steering is more direct.
The Golf R has the uprated brakes from the GTI Performance Package model. At the front, the car has 13.4-inch diameter vented discs that are 1.2 inches thick, while the rear rotors are 12.2 by 0.9 inches. The black brake calipers have the R logo on them. Up front, the single pistons are 2.4 inches in diameter and are 1.7 inches at the back.
In addition, the Golf R is equipped with the XDS® cross differential lock at the front and rear. The latest XDS+ version applies this functionality to a larger range of dynamic performance, helping make the vehicle more agile. When the car is being driven at highway speeds, brake pressure is applied to the inside wheel to help restore optimal traction as soon as the electronics detect excessively light loads. The XDS+ system operates like a limited-slip differential and can help compensate for understeer during cornering.
The Driving Mode Selection feature has four programs in the Golf R: “Normal,” “Individual,” “Eco,” and a “Race” mode that has been specially designed for the Golf R. In “Race” mode, which is intended for high-speed track driving, engine response and the shift points of the DSG transmission are configured to be even sportier. In the "Individual" driving profile, the driver can combine mode settings for various individual parameters.
The Driving Mode Selection feature also encompasses electronic adjustment of the suspension characteristics. The DCC adaptive chassis control also adds a “Comfort” driving mode, which is selected and displayed alongside “Normal,” “Individual,” “Eco,” and “Race” via the center console touchscreen as part of the “Driving Profile Selector” functionality. In “Sport” mode, the dampers are stiffened for more agile handling; in “Race” mode the dampers are stiffer still, and in “Comfort” mode they are in their softest setting.
The DCC system adaptively controls the damper valves via a further developed and refined control algorithm. DCC takes input signals from wheel displacement sensors and accelerometers as well as vehicle information from the Chassis-CAN bus to compute these values and adaptively adjust the optimal damping force. Moreover, damping forces are selectively applied to the four wheels individually. With the new generation of DCC, it is now possible to independently vary rebound and compression damping while cornering.
The 2019 Golf R is equipped with “ESC Sport” as standard. The system is activated by a two-stage switch on the center console. When the driver presses this switch, Electronic Stability Control (ESC) switches to the “ESC Sport” mode. When driving on a race track, the ESC system has a higher threshold in this mode. When the ESC button is pressed for longer than three seconds, the system is fully deactivated for high-performance track driving, a feature that is available only on the Golf R.
To help protect occupants, the Golf R provides a combination of both passive and active safety systems. It features six airbags as standard (front and side airbags for front passengers and side curtain airbags for outboard seating positions), along with a number of electronic safety systems, such as an Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) and Electronic Stability Control (ESC).
A standard feature on the 2019 Golf R is Volkswagen’s Automatic Post-Collision Braking System. This builds on the premise that a collision is rarely a single, instantaneous action, but rather a series of events that follow the initial impact—the most significant of which can cause additional collisions. The Automatic Post-Collision Braking System helps address this, in certain crash scenarios, by applying the brakes when a primary collision is detected by the airbag sensors, thus potentially reducing residual kinetic energy and, in turn, the chance of additional damage.
The Golf R also includes Volkswagen’s Intelligent Crash Response System that shuts off the fuel pump, unlocks the doors, and switches on the hazard lights if the car is involved in certain types of collisions.
All Golf R models feature a standard rearview camera.
To meet the demands of American drivers, the 2019 Golf R offers a comprehensive suite of driver-assistance technology. Standard features include: Forward Collision Warning and Autonomous Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Monitoring (Front Assist); Blind Spot Monitor Rear Traffic Alert; Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC); Lane Keeping System (Lane Assist); Park Distance Control; and High Beam Control (Light Assist).
Front Assist, is intended to warn drivers of potential frontal collisions (Forward Collision Warning) with vehicles and pedestrians, and in some cases provide automatic braking assistance (Autonomous Emergency Braking).
Within physical system limits, Forward Collision Warning warns the driver of potential critical front-end collision situations, both acoustically and visually by a warning symbol in the instrument cluster if the car is traveling above 18 mph. Furthermore, an automatic jolt of the brakes can warn the driver of the danger. If the driver fails to brake, or if the car is traveling below 18 mph, Autonomous Emergency Braking is activated to help slow the vehicle. If the brake pedal is applied but the driver brakes too lightly, the brake pressure is increased by the system (Braking Support).
Blind Spot Monitor uses two radar sensors at the rear of the vehicle to scan the approaching traffic and is intended to warn drivers of potential danger in adjacent lanes. If the driver uses the turn signal to indicate a lane change while a vehicle is detected in a blind spot, the system utilizes a flashing LED symbol in the outer area of the side mirrors. Even if the driver does not use a turn signal, the LED symbol in the mirror will illuminate if a vehicle is detected in the blind spot. The system is designed to help alert drivers in specific situations; stationary objects or oncoming vehicles do not trigger warnings, nor do vehicles more than one lane across away from the vehicle.
Combined with Lane Assist (see below) the system not only warns the driver with the flashing LED symbol if a vehicle is detected in the blind spot, but within system limits, it can also countersteer to help keep the car in the lane even if the turn signal is on. If the driver still tries to steer out of the lane, the system will warn with an additional vibration of the steering wheel.
The Rear Traffic Alert system is intended to detect vehicles approaching from the side that may be difficult for the driver to see while reversing. It offers a sizable range of about 65 feet on either side of the vehicle, and will present a visual and an acoustic warning, if a potential collision with a crossing vehicle is detected. If the driver does not react, the system can apply the brakes to help mitigate and, in the best case, can help prevent a collision. The system is activated by putting the car in reverse.
Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) uses a forward facing radar to maintain a set speed while helping maintain a set distance to the vehicle in front. The driver sets the speed and the desired spacing via buttons on the multifunction steering wheel and can further use those buttons to adjust and cancel the ACC function while the accelerator can be used to override the ACC function. Pressing the brakes always cancels the ACC function. All ACC-related system messages appear in the central multifunction display.
When the roadway ahead of the vehicle is clear, the system maintains the set speed. Golf R models can match a vehicle in front and come to a stop if the vehicle in front does. The driver can resume ACC control after pressing the accelerator pedal.
When driving above 40 mph, if there is an indication that the vehicle is unintentionally straying from its lane without using a turn signal, Lane Keeping System (Lane Assist) actively countersteers to help keep the vehicle in the lane. The system’s camera recognizes visible lane markings and, using a special algorithm, calculates the risk of the car leaving the lane. If the driver takes his or her hands off the wheel for a defined period of time, the system provides an audible warning and a visual signal in the instrument cluster, asking the driver to take over.
The system can work in the dark and/or in fog, but it will not engage if it cannot properly detect lane markings. If the turn signal has been set before crossing a lane marking, the Lane Assist system will not engage or give a warning. The driver can “override” the system at any time by applying minimal force to the steering wheel.
Park Distance Control, uses ultrasonic sensors located in the front and rear bumpers to monitor a range of up to approximately five feet in front or behind the vehicle. The system is activated when reverse gear is engaged or below a speed of 9 mph and helps provide guidance when parking or in tight spaces. The system has audible and visual warnings when the car starts to approach parked cars or static objects from the front or rear.
Maneuver Braking, a part of the Park Distance Control system, is intended to mitigate or help prevent collisions with static obstacles to the front and rear while the vehicle is maneuvered. The system is active when reverse gear is selected. If the system detects a stationary object while the vehicle is in reverse and moving between 1-6 mph, it can apply the brakes automatically to help prevent or mitigate a collision. The system can be deactivated at any time using the touch display or permanently in the setup menu.
High Beam Control (Light Assist) automatically raises the headlamp high beams above 40 mph on dark or poorly lit roads, if there is no oncoming traffic detected.