You might be thinking, seriously? Subaru WRX vs Golf GTI?
It’s on. And like never before.
Now is the point where you remember that the Subaru WRX is a sedan and the proud Volkswagen Golf GTI is a hatch. However, for this playoff, let’s pretend they’re both hot hatches.
Sure, you may have a soft spot for German cars, we get it. But this could very well change your mind.
Why these two?
Why not? They’re both vying (believe it or not) for anyone willing to spend 50,000 on a fast car. And what a great showdown – German engineering up against rally-bred obsessive genius designers at Subaru.
Ok, enough chit-chat. Let’s get down to business.
Speed: what’s faster, Subaru WRX vs Volkswagen Golf GTI?
Lining these two up on a flat runway, it’s almost like a blockbuster. The WRX leaps forward with an impressive pace, taking the Golf by surprise. Thanks to its Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive which endows superior traction, the WRX steams ahead. The lead is shortened as the Golf tries to catch up, but it’s clear who the winner is.
But let’s break this down and look at the numbers. The Subaru has 268 horsepower vs the Golf GTI’s 228. That’s actually a big difference. And with similar torque, there’s no doubt that the WRX does perform better.
Oh, and by the way, if you splash out on a WRX STI, you’re going to be in command of a 310-horsepower turbo-four. For a car that, yes, still manages a cheap price tag, that’s phenomenal. With the GTI, all you get is well, GTI.
We’ll say no more.
Who handles better?
When it comes to handling and road feel, the Golf GTI has been winning this for decades. It’s second-nature by now. Just hand over the medal. And yeah, these days it’s hard to come close to the agility, and comfort you feel when throwing it into corners, or enjoying that almost buttery-feeling you get when cruising around town.
It’s smooth. But almost annoyingly so.
The WRX comes from a different stock. Human and car met and they said yep, let’s do rallying. And that’s the beauty of the WRX. Its unpolished history, spitting up sand and dust amid cheers and jeers has given its modern iteration some character, something you can relate to.
Interiors, looks, and comforts
Both these cars have a lot going for them when you open the door and climb inside. Turn the key (ahem) press the start button, and yeah, there’s plenty of tech to fiddle with too. If you’re checking out base models, then expect cloth seats in both, while the GTI boasts heated front seats as standard. You’ll need to pay extra for leather seats, and power-adjustable driver’s seats, no matter which car you fancy. Both have automatic climate control and feel as comfortable as any sporty new car.
All in all, the polished VW Golf GTI scrapped out a win here as it does have some flashy interior speckles. If that’s your thing.
Subaru WRX vs Golf GTI: value for money
It’s no secret that the Golf GTI is always more expensive than the WRX.
In fact, you’ll probably save over a thousand dollars straight up by choosing the WRX.
But, just for argument’s sake. Say you took that extra cash and upgraded to an STI, or let’s be honest throw an STI spoiler on it, because why not? You’re now looking at a completely different ballgame with a spruced-up WRX or even all in on the formidable Subaru WRX STI. But this is your car, so you choose.
Subaru WRX vs Golf GTI: who you’d rather live with
Ok, we won’t talk about cargo space, because the Golf is a hatch, and hatches have loads more space in the boot. So while that’s a clear win for the GTI, you need to look closer than that to get the full picture.
Both cars actually have plenty of room in the backseat and cockpit, which means you don’t get that cockpit feeling that you do in some other hot hatch species. And both have superb safety ratings that would make you comfortable driving with a screaming carload of kids in the dark on the freeway.
If you’re a stickler for fuel economy, then choose the GTI, but if you have WRX tendencies, then chances are you’ll be happy with the 12.8 L/100km combined fuel efficiency of the Subaru.
But what this really comes down to is personality. And for that, it’s over to you. While the GTI might have the edge on what is expected of you, the WRX brings out the unexpected.
We’ll give that point to the GTI. But just for kicks.
Three-two. Game over.
If you haven’t tallied up the points yet, it’s a win for the WRX.
And well deserved. The new car has been through a lot over the ages, and sure, while it may lack some ‘poshness‘, it makes up for that in gutsy power and a no-nonsense attitude.
And while the GTI will continue to impress, and rightly so, its lack of power and overall predictability which has served it for so long – may well be its undoing.