Volkswagen Golf GTI birthday special unwrapped early

The VW Golf GTI is about to turn 45, and leaked images show an upcoming special-edition hot hatch likely to carry the Edition 45 moniker.

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James Wong
James Wong
Production Editor
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The Volkswagen Golf GTI is about to celebrate another birthday.

Images believed to depict the upcoming 2022 Volkswagen Golf GTI Edition 45 have leaked overnight, signalling the release of another Mk8 Golf GTI variant.

Volkswagen Australia hasn’t confirmed if we’ll see it in Australia – keep in mind it hasn’t been officially revealed – but special-edition GTI variants “are absolutely part of the future Mk8 Golf Performance range”.

Volkswagen Group Australia also hinted something along the lines of the Clubsport or Edition 45 could land in Aussie showrooms sometime in the future.

The GTI Edition 45 appears to be based on the latest GTI Clubsport, which in Europe runs a 213kW/370Nm 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol motor with a range of racy upgrades over the ‘standard’ 180kW GTI.

Key differentiators on this Edition 45 include the ’45’ side decals, different alloy wheels in black (likely forged lightweight items), and a blacked-out rear spoiler.

We haven’t seen any images of the interior yet, but it’s likely the Golf GTI Edition 45 will feature some unique trimmings to signify its special edition status.

The Volkswagen Golf GTI Edition 45 will be the latest in a long line of anniversary-edition GTI variants, dating back to 2001 with the GTI 25th Anniversary based on the Mk4 hot hatch.

In Australia, we’ve seen the Mk6 GTI Edition 35 (2011) and Mk7 GTI 40 Years (2016) which have proven to be quite popular and desirable amongst local buyers.

Volkswagen Australia has also commissioned several bespoke Golf performance editions such as the three-door GTI Original and GTI Performance Edition 1, as well as the Golf R Grid, Special Edition and Final Edition.

You can read our retrospective on special-edition VW Golf GTIs here.

Beyond the limited-edition models, Volkswagen Australia is readying the latest Mk8 Golf GTI for sale, with first deliveries due around mid-year.

Pricing for the new-generation hot hatch will start at $53,100 plus on-road costs, marking a significant increase over the outgoing Mk7.5.

Regardless, the new GTI packs a new design and more tech for the money, including Matrix LED headlights, a larger 10.0-inch infotainment system with wireless smartphone mirroring, and an enhanced suite of driver assist technolgies.

Stay tuned to CarExpert for all the latest Golf GTI news over the coming months.

MORE: 2021 Volkswagen Golf price and specs
MORE: Volkswagen Golf news, reviews, comparisons and videos

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James Wong
James Wong
James Wong is the Production Editor at CarExpert.
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