Abt-VW Golf GTI in the test

Rossen Gargolov
Abt-VW Golf GTI under test
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B when the Abt-VW Golf is registered GTI must have gone wrong. Who would put the number of the Antichrist on a white car? Certainly no one who has ever dealt with Iron Maiden's “Number of the Beast” album.

Abt-VW Golf GTI without mechanical lock

On the other hand - if the doped one Abt-VW Golf GTI starts sprinting, the suspicion could well arise that the corporal is raging through the combustion chambers of the two-liter four-cylinder. As a basis for the conversion, the tuner relied on a 220 PS strong GTI of the seventh generation - without a performance package, and therefore not only with a little less power, but also without a mechanical lock and without a large brake - the We had a performance variant in the Supertest .

Included with the VW Golf GTI: Tight and comfortable padded sports seats with plenty of lateral support with stylish checked covers, perfectly readable round instruments plus the other, typical -Golfy infallibility in the interior - a wise decision by Abt to leave all of this in the standard condition.

Abt-VW Golf GTI with powerful draft

In terms of performance, the VW Golf GTI from Abt still has a somewhat more acute dynamic, as he simply has to please many in the series state. So an additional control unit (2,349 euros plus installation and acceptance) lifts the power by 70 to 290 hp (at 4,800 instead of 4,500 rpm), the maximum torque increases from 350 to 420 Newton meters, which can be accessed between 1,500 and 4,400 tours as usual. As with the production model, the mountain of torque builds up dangerously steep, but the direct injection does not climb it drastically and unrestrained. Instead, the cultivated four-cylinder delivers an even, very powerful pulling force.

The engine responds with negligible delay, then shoulders the 1.4-ton VW Golf GTI and pulls it in with gentle but extremely determined force Towards the finish line. In 5.9 seconds the Abt GTI cracks the 100 km /h mark from a standstill and thus undercuts the performance variant last measured in the test (6.2 s), the basic model anyway (6.4 s).

ESP not completecan be switched off, sponge over it

Regardless of the 225 tires, the Abt GTI scrapes a little with the front wheels, but doesn't have to worry about traction - which of course is also related to the control electronics that cannot be switched off completely.

On the other hand: The VW engineers have not programmed a mood destroyer either. For example, if you step on the accelerator at the apex of the curve for fun, you will notice how the system smoothly releases the power depending on the steering angle, until no more rubber is guaranteed to smoke. In any case, the Abt-VW Golf GTI pastes even more consistently on the road, because the tuner mounts 8.5 x 19 rims on 225/35 tires (complete wheel set: 3,490 euros) in addition to 30 millimeter lowering springs - the series tested so far. GTI stood on 18-inch wheels.

Stiff chassis, wobbly handling

This brings the abbot VW Golf GTI from 100 km /h around one meter earlier than the base. In addition, the chassis measures require a noticeably more aggressive steering behavior with minimized understeer, but also with equally minimized suspension comfort. The tuned VW bucks noticeably, especially on long bumps.

In view of the wobbly agility and the lack of adaptive dampers, the healthy hardness is hardly surprising. That is why the driver of the Abt-VW Golf GTI likes to hit the gas again before thinking about it for a long time. Even in the medium speed range, the four-cylinder responds spontaneously, relentlessly fires its torque-slinger, turns happily towards the 6,000 rpm mark - but not so happily beyond that. A typical effect of the six-speed dual clutch transmission is a nasty-looking snort during the lightning-fast gear changes .

Sound spectrum of the Abt-GTI between bass guitar and tuba

Always in the luggage is the four-pipe silencer orchestra in the rear (1,490 euros), whose sound varies between a deeply tuned bass guitar and an enthusiastically blown tuba. For fun, sport auto measured once: At a recommended motorway speed of 130 km /h, the noise level in the interior of the Abt-VW Golf GTI is 70 db (A) and thus at the factory level, but at a speed of 160 it is 77 db (A) four db (A) above.

The Abt-VW Golf GTI never bothered its occupants with annoying roaring frequencies, instead it just sounds the way it looks - aggressive, maybe even a bit diabolical. The powerfully gripping motor fits in perfectly with this, although some doubts remain about the purely software-based output. After all, Abt grants a correspondingly extensive guarantee.

The only question left is why not immediatelyWas a conversion based on the performance variant? “We're working on it,” replies Kempten. And until that happens, the small course in Hockenheim should also be available again for the Abt-VW Golf GTI. It would have to be the devil if it didn't turn out to be a decent lap time.


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