All thanks to Herbert Diess
Even if the rumors that the 2020 Volkswagen GTI will make 300 hp end up being wrong, we’re still looking forward to driving the next-generation hot hatch. The current version is an incredibly well-rounded daily driver, and the new one promises to improve on what we already have. Even better, it sounds like the rumored switch to a hybrid powertrain has been cancelled.
According to a report from Autocar, the decision to turn the GTI into a hybrid came from Matthias Muller back when he was the head of Volkswagen Group. When Herbert Diess took over, he supposedly reversed that decision. Instead, it sounds like the next GTI will stick to the same basic formula that made it so popular over the last several decades.
To be fair, there’s nothing wrong with performance hybrids in general. Ferrari, Porsche, and McLaren settled that debate years ago with the LaFerrari, 918 Spyder, and P1 hybrid hypercars. But the cost of the GTI has continued to creep up over the years, and the idea of a hybrid GTI had us concerned about price. After all, if a base GTI already costs $28,490 USD including destination, the redesigned hybrid version would probably cross the $30,000 USD mark.
Instead, Autocar believes we’ll see the 2020 GTI offered in two trim levels: a base configuration that makes about 250 hp and a more powerful one that’s closer to 285 hp. It also sounds like engineers have put a lot of work into improving the steering, which is something we’ll never complain about.