Can The New VW Up! GTI Beat A 1980s Golf GTI Mk2 In A Straight Line?

Thanks to its small footprint, punchy engine and tuned chassis, the Up! GTI has been compared by both car enthusiasts and Volkswagen to the original Golf GTI.

However, this drag race doesn’t put the modern city car, in its most powerful form, against the Mk1 generation of the Golf GTI, but sees it go up against the newer Mk2, which is about as potent as the Up! GTI, and actually, a bit lighter, too.

The classic hot hatch uses a naturally aspirated 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine, whereas the brand’s most affordable GTI model has a turbocharged 1.0-liter unit, paired to a six-speed manual gearbox. The naught to 100 km/h (0-62 mph) acceleration won’t blow anyone’s mind, but it still stands at a very respectable 8.8 seconds, whereas top speed goes up to 196 km/h (122 mph).

Also Watch: VW Golf With 1,200+ HP Runs The Quarter Mile In 8.47s, Sets New World Record

As mentioned above, the weight factor should play a decisive role, as the Volkswagen Golf GTI Mk2 has the advantage on its side. It tips the scales at just under 1 ton (2,205 lbs), while the newer car weighs a bit over 1 ton.

Over the years, the old hot hatch may have lost some ponies from the stable. But did it lose so many that it doesn’t stand a chance next to the Volkswagen Up! GTI, or is it still superior in a straight line acceleration, despite being introduced more than three decades ago? You can find out by watching the following video.


  • Still Golf GTI Mk2, it’s better to drive and they are being appreciated as the time went by.

    • Ilbirs

      A thing that a Golf II and other contemporary models can teach us from the present is how an unbloated model is fantastic in a lot of aspects. You don’t have those huge 16 to 20 rims that are now the most common thing seen in a car. 13 to 15 sizes, this thing that was the norm for about three decades, were fine, didn’t add that much unsprung weight and allowed the wheel wells to be smaller, thus leading to more room being freed and no need to stretch the length to keep those volumes from invading the cabin. We could also talk about tires that weren’t that wide, meaning that you didn’t need to widen the model to cover all this rubber and also making easier to achieve a tighter turning circle, what also made easier the task of making an U-turn or parking when all that is available is a very tight spot.

  • Miknik

    Carwow, the VAG drag race channel as it appears…

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