Matt Robinson a year ago 21

The VW Golf GTI Heartbeat Is A 394bhp Hot Hatch Tease

Just a week after news of the R400's demise landed, VW has revealed another near-400bhp Golf. And no, this one won't go into production either...

Remind me later

If you’re a hardcore VW Golf fan, you’re probably in a state of emotional flux right now. This week we’ve had the news of the Nurburgring-storming Golf GTI Clubsport S, but then only a week ago we were hearing about the cancellation of the bonkers Golf R400 project. To further give Golf fans a hit of mixed feelings, VW has revealed another near-400bhp version of the car at the 35th Wörthersee meet, and it’s another motor that won’t become a production reality, I’m afraid.

It’s a cool project though. Dubbed the VW Golf GTI Heartbeat, it’s been created over nine months using the ideas of various trainees from across the company. The familiar EA888 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder has been boosted up to 394bhp, while on the inside you’ll find a 1360 watt sound system.

The outside is enhanced by a rather attractive two-tone finish with honeycomb detailing (plus a nod to the GTI’s 40th anniversary), a high-gloss bodykit and a set of arch-filling 20-inch BBS wheels.

Like your hot Golfs to be a little more practical? You’ll also find the above car at Wörthersee, un-catchily called the Golf R Variant Performance 35 from Zwickau. It produces a more modest 345bhp, but the sound system is more impressive: this one’s packing 12 speakers putting out a healthy 2500 watts.