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One of the most iconic Volkswagen cars is set to be completely redesigned for the 2022 model year. The Volkswagen GTI is surprisingly affordable despite its racecar-like handling, capable engine, and luxury interior. For 2022, it will reportedly have updated technology and even better performance specs.

One thing that probably won’t return is the two-door option for the VW GTI. According to Car and Driver, the automaker wanted to shift its focus to four-door models, which were more popular amongst consumers. While some people might miss the two-door GTI, the 2021 model still has a lot to offer.

The two-door 2016 Volkswagen GTI

For this model year, the Volkswagen GTI has a 210-hp turbo-four paired with a six-speed manual transmission. You could also opt for an automatic six-speed gearbox, and a performance package to add 10 additional ponies to the engine. Every 2016 GTI has an adjustable suspension that can be tuned for maximum enjoyment on the track or daily driving.

The GTI coupe is lighter than its four-door counterpart, giving it slightly better handling. The engine provides consistent acceleration and tackling sharp corners is easy inside the GTI. Gas mileage isn’t particularly remarkable, rated for 25/34 mpg city/highway at best.

While all 2016 GTI models are now cheaper on the used market, the two-door model was less expensive upon its release. Car and Driver reports that this version was $600 cheaper than the four-door GTI. However, it was more difficult to locate in showrooms because it had to be ordered through VW’s website.

These models received some impressive new tech for this year, like standard smartphone integration, Bluetooth, and a touchscreen infotainment interface. However, the 2016 Volkswagen GTI is considered to be less reliable compared to other years.

The 2017 model’s popularity

2017 may have been the Volkswagen Golf GTI coupe’s final year, but a GTI Sport was introduced. This model featured the performance package as standard equipment, adding extra horsepower and upgraded brakes. A limited-slip differential was also included, and fans were relieved to find that the manual transmission wasn’t phased out.

The 2017 Sport model has some flashier exterior elements, like LED running lights and Nogaro wheels with blacked-out caps. Disappointingly, you couldn’t have the performance package on the 2017 Volkswagen GTI coupe. The two-door model was only available as a standard S trim. 

Is the 2021 Volkswagen GTI better?

Guo Yongfeng, President of Faw-Volkswagen Sales, presents the new red Volkswagen Golf GTI car during the 19th Shanghai International Automobile Industry Exhibition
The 2021 Volkswagen Golf GTI | HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP via Getty Images

1 Flaw Keeps the 2021 Volkswagen Golf GTI From Being a Great Sports Car

The latest Volkswagen GTI has a slightly peppier engine, capable of 228 hp and 258 lb-ft of torque. The six-speed manual is still there, but drivers can now opt for a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. Both are good matches for the engine, but the manual undoubtedly gives thrill-seekers the best experience.

GTIs with the manual transmission get the worst gas mileage, down to 23/30 mpg city/highway. Even though it’s a sportier model, its ride is quite comfortable. Riders can sit on either cloth or leather seats, both of which come with heating for the cabin occupants. Both rows are accommodating enough for taller passengers.

The 2021 Volkswagen GTI is still slightly outdated in terms of technology, evident from its 6.5-inch touchscreen. You can upgrade to an 8-inch screen, but the graphics are still grainy and don’t always react in time to inputs. The base trim still has a decent selection of both convenience and safety tech.

While VW apparently doesn’t see the merit of offering two-door models, coupes are far from out of style. The popular Toyota Supra is available exclusively as a coupe, while Mustangs and Porsche models offer two-seaters as well. With enough interest, Volkswagen might reconsider its perspective on a future Volkswagen GTI coupe.