2020 Volkswagen Golf GTD: performance, specifications, economy and prices

Want a sporty family hatchback that can also return good fuel economy? Then the diesel-powered VW Golf GTD may be the car for you

James Allen
Nov 29, 2020

Volkswagen has already launched the petrol-powered performance version of its Golf hatchback - the GTI - and now it’s fleshed out the family with the new, diesel-powered Golf GTD hot hatch.

While it doesn’t have quite the same firepower as the Golf GTI, the Golf GTD is nevertheless a pretty quick family hatchback: thanks to its 200hp turbocharged diesel engine - which also offers a substantial 400Nm of low engine speed muscle, which is more than the GTI can manage - the car can accelerate from 0-62mph in a pretty brisk 7.1 seconds.

It’s the fuel economy, though, that’s the big draw of the Golf GTD; while the GTI can return up to 38mpg, Volkswagen says the GTD is capable of up to 54mpg. This means that if you cover high mileages you should spend less money on fuel with the GTD. The car isn’t too expensive to tax, either, thanks to the GTD’s quoted CO2 emissions of up to 143g/km.

Apart from the differing engines under the bonnet, Volkswagen says the GTD and GTI are quite similar cars inside and out. Both sporty Golf versions have subtly sporty design touches inside and out, and the car maker claims there’s little to separate the two hot hatches when it comes to the standard equipment spec sheet.

There’s not much to differentiate the pair when it comes to prices, either. With a starting figure of £32,790, the Golf GTD is a little bit more affordable than the £33,460 petrol-powered Golf GTI. As mentioned above, though, it's fuel costs where you can expect to see the biggest savings with the GTD.

Quick facts

  • New Golf GTD diesel hot hatch revealed
  • 200hp and 400Nm of torque
  • Claimed 0-62mph in 7.1 seconds
  • Fuel economy of up to 54mpg
  • Priced from £32,790
  • On sale now

2020 Volkswagen Golf GTD performance

Under the bonnet of the new Golf GTD is a 2.0-litre turbocharged diesel engine, which produces 200hp. While this is a bit down on the 245hp that’s available in the Golf GTI, it does mean the GTD is by some margin the most powerful diesel-powered VW Golf you can buy - and the GTD’s 400Nm of torque is slightly better than the GTI’s 370Nm output, too, meaning that you can expect it to pull harder at low engine speeds.

That power and torque also make the Golf GTD a fairly fast family hatchback on paper. According to Volkswagen, the car is able to accelerate from 0-62mph in 7.1 seconds, and reach a top speed of 152mph - meaning it has plenty of performance for the public road.

Just like the Golf GTI, the Golf GTD will be exclusively sold as a front-wheel drive car. Unlike the GTI, though, the GTD will not be available with a manual gearbox, as Volkswagen is only offering the car with a seven-speed automatic gearbox.

Golf GTD vs Golf GTI vs Golf GTD

In terms of acceleration, the Golf GTD is the slowest of the three Golf GT hot hatch models - the petrol-electric Golf GTE plug-in hybrid is a bit quicker to 62mph from a standing start, and the petrol-only GTI even faster still. The GTD doesn’t have a massive performance deficit to its petrol-powered counterparts, though - and, despite their different engine setups, all three cars are more than capable of getting up to speed quite quickly.

On paper, the Golf GTE is officially the most efficient fast Golf you can buy right now, thanks to its quoted 176mpg fuel economy and 36g/km CO2 emissions -though you'll have to charge the car regularly to get anywhere near these figures.

However, because you’ll need to drive the GTE as often as possible in electric-only mode to get close to those figures, the Golf GTD may be the most frugal option for some drivers - especially those who tend to cover lots of miles on faster roads like dual carriageways and motorways.

Name

0-62 mph

Top speed

Fuel economy

CO2 emissions

Golf GTD

7.1 secs

152mph

51.4-54.3mpg

137-143g/km

Golf GTI

6.3 secs

155mph

36.7-38.2mpg

169-174g/km

Golf GTE

6.7 secs

140mph

176.6mpg

36g/km

 

2020 Volkswagen Golf GTD in-car tech

As it’s a performance-oriented car, the Golf GTD has been given a bit of a makeover to give it a sportier look over the regular diesel-powered Golf models. These touches include a redesigned front bumper with a bigger air intake, a slightly larger roof spoiler, new honeycomb-design front foglights and twin exhaust pipes poking out of the back.

There are more distinctive details on the inside, too, including a GTD-branded sports steering wheel while the front seats that are trimmed in tartan fabric - a long-running tradition in sporty VW Golfs. Because the Golf GTD is automatic-only, though, it doesn’t get the golf ball-style dimpled gear knob that’s available on the manual versions of the Golf GTI.

Volkswagen also claims the Golf GTD is on par with the GTI and GTE versions when it comes to many of the in-car features. Standard features in the GTD include cruise control, a heated steering wheel, a six-speaker sound system and a 10-inch touchscreen media system with built-in sat-nav - though you’ll need to pay extra if you want to have a Golf GTD with heated seats or a reversing camera.

2020 Volkswagen Golf GTD prices

Just like its petrol and plug-in hybrid Golf hot hatch counterparts, the new Golf GTD is now available to order. Prices start at £32,790, which makes the Golf GTD a bit more affordable than the Golf GTI (£33,460) and the pricier still Golf GTE (£35,960).

 

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