Even though the “GTD” badge is far less popular than the iconic “GTI”, especially outside of Europe, the diesel-fuelled hot hatch has been around for nearly as long as its petrol counterpart. While the original GTI came out in 1975, the diesel followed suit only seven years later with the 1982 Golf GTD.

Despite the fact that the Volkswagen Group’s image – not to mention its bank accounts - has been greatly affected by the Dieselgate, the Golf GTD will live to see another generation. Next month, the Mk8 will celebrate its world debut at the Geneva Motor Show by making some rather bold claims – “cleanest turbo diesel injection (TDI) engine ever to be installed in a Golf.” Not only that, but VW says the new Golf GTD will be powered by “one of the cleanest combustion engines in the world.”

VW is making these promises in relation to the latest technologies implemented in the 2.0 TDI (EA 288 Evo) to make it less harmful to the environment. As you may recall, a video was recently posted by the company to detail the twin-dosing process and the implementation of three catalytic converters. NOX levels have been reduced by as much as 80 percent compared to the previous generation of the four-cylinder diesel mill while maintaining the low-end torque and reduced fuel consumption that diesel fans appreciate.

While VW isn’t saying how much power it will deliver in the new Golf GTD, a leaked slideshow from what must have been an internal presentation revealed an output of 147 kilowatts, which works out to 197 bhp. If that number turns out to be accurate, it represents a 16-bhp boost over the old model. There’s no word about torque just yet, but we’ll remind you the Golf GTD Mk7 had 280 pound-feet (380 Newton-metres) from 1,750 rpm.

It remains to be seen whether the Golf GTD will spawn a new estate this time around, and we’re also curious to find out whether there will be both a manual and a DSG available like it was the case with the previous model.

We will know what’s what early March when the car will celebrate its premiere in Geneva alongside the Golf GTI. Later in 2020, a hotter GTI TCR will arrive and will be followed shortly by the all-wheel-drive R.

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World première at Geneva Motor Show:
First glimpse of the new Golf GTD


Volkswagen will celebrate the world première of the Golf GTD at the Geneva International Motor Show from 5 to 15 March. Among the technical highlights is the most powerful and – thanks to twin dosing – cleanest turbo diesel injection (TDI) engine ever to be installed in a Golf. It harmonises the confident dynamism of the Golf GTD together with higher efficiency and lowest emissions. The charismatic design of the Golf GTD reflects a unique combination of dynamism and self-confidence.