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What Top Gear has to say about the new 32......


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Having just read the whole "blurb" on their website i will leave you with the verdict...

"If the R32 hits like a baseball bat studded with rusty nails, then the GTI is a precision-forged samurai sword by way of comparison. And, with DSG, it's £3,755 cheaper"....

Is anyone going to pay that extra 3,755 ? confused.gif

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True, but then JC et al do have some weird ideas at times!!

Anyhow, I've owned and driven an R32 for two years,and driven a new Gti twice and I want more then what the R32 can give and way more the the GTi.

I haven't driven the new one for obvious reasons so my only baseline is the old one, which I think is better then the new GTi, so the new R32 has a lot to live up to!!

smile.gif169144-ok.gif

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JC et al tend to look at 0-60, top end, as well as how well you can thrash it around their track. Given that the only perceived difference between the Mk5 GTI and the Mk5 R32 is a bigger, heavier lump in the front (so more prone to understeer, just like the Mk4) and 4WD, then I'm not surprised to hear them say/type that.

The Mk5 GTI is a fantastic car. Give it 4Motion and I would have one any day over an R32 - Mk4 or Mk5 shocked.gif

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When I had the MkV GTi loaner between my last two .:R's, I won't deny I was impressed with the chassis, but then I said that when I had a 1.6ltr MkV loaner too. For me, there was too much power through the front wheels, wheel spin in 2nd was easy, and torque steer wasn't exactly hard to experience.

With the Haldex, bigger engine & better chassis, I would expect the MkV .:R32 to be better than the MkIV, but I'm not convinced. Ok, so I haven't driven one, but I couldn't wait to be back into an .:R32 after three days, and about 600 miles in a GTi. Maybe it was because I had a new car coming, maybe because the GTi's looks don't appeal to me. But I did have a little worry that I would get into the GTi & not want my new .:R32, it never happened though. cool.gif

If the MkV .:R32 was that much better than the GTi, then I would have expected all the reviews to say just that, but they keep raising the question of it's value against the GTi. This makes me think, as an overall package, the MkV vs MkIV becomes a looks thing more than anything else.

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Clearly the Mk4 R32 is a very hard act to follow. Personally, whereas I can see the point of and also enjoy any comparisons between Mk4 or 5 R32 and GTI, I can't see that any is clearly better than the other. Until some of you guys here who are experienced with the Mk4 version of the R32 can get some mileage in a new version any comparison is somewhat academic. Bits of what the journos write and say might be right but it's too easy for them to get carried away with the art of wordsmithing.

I suppose that it's inevitable that we make comparisons with the GTI but it only comes down to what each individual wants from a car and how much they can enjoy their feel preferences.

The expectation has to be that the new Mk5 R32 will be better than the Mk4....Indeed if it isn't then VW aren't making any progress. But with her silver codpiece she's not winning any beauty contests. We'll have to wait and see how she performs. You guys and gals with Mk4s are naturally going to be the most critical so I'm interested in what you will be writing rather than the journos - even JC! notworthy.gif

Btw, I didn't choose my GTI because I thought it was "better" than the Mk4 R32 but only because I found that in reality it suited me better. The Mk4 R32 was always one of my dream cars.

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I agree totally Red. That's one of the reasons why I'm interested in at least seeing the MkV in the flesh properly, rather than from video clips & photo's. I can't get my head around it's look, yet some have commented when seeing it in the flesh it looks better.

I have a friend with a MkV GTi in Black, all the toys etc, and I think it looks nice, but not quite my taste, but I can't see how I can write it off before I've seen or better still, driven it. My comments re the MkV are I guess out of frustration more than anything, though I have to say the MkV R32's looks are keeping one person I know happy - the GF!

UHOH7.GIF

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Forgive me if i am wrong, but i seem to recall that Top Gear were not exactly quick to praise the mark 4 R32 - so do Top Gears comments really matter to the avid R32 fan?

Top Gears comments are only really something for a dealer to be bothered about...... if they think the GTI is better value then fair enough, thats stating the obvious. But the fact its £3000 will not stop me getting one

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They always look better in the 'flesh'. Cars are more than just lumps of metal (even if most but not all females aren't convinced of that!)....They have a kind of 'spirit' but not in the religious sense. They come alive when driven and some can make glorious sounds and are tactile and have character....Everyone on TSN already knows this!! 169144-ok.gif

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[ QUOTE ]

Forgive me if i am wrong, but i seem to recall that Top Gear were not exactly quick to praise the mark 4 R32

[/ QUOTE ]

That depends, and it's funny as a lot of people quote that. Yet on the TV programme, at the very end of their review of the Alfa, Focus & R32 JC & Hammond both said they would opt for the R32 over the Focus, but they did love the "purpose" (I think that was their word) of the Focus. confused.gif What I think they were trying to get at was the R32 was a better allrounder.

Make of that what you will.

confused.gif

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"better" and "value for money" are different questions.

Just suppose the R32 was the same price as a GTI - which car would you choose? - that would answer the better question (and I'm sure some would still take the GTI in the same way they would have manual rather than DSG even if DSG was a no cost option).

Whether the R32 is worth almost £4k more is more of a personal value judgement. If you think the R32 is better and can afford the extra £4k then why not? The R32 is still much cheaper than a lot of cars out there.

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The thing I've found, and one which JC and pals will never know or understand, is that you need to live with an .:R for sometime to get to know it properly, push it harder and look beyond it quirks and foibles.

When I 1st drove the .:R it wasn't easy; short gearing, twitchy 1st gear, heavy front end, understeery, hesitation, etc but you then learn how to overcome these things and the car really excels at that point.

A blast round a track / country lane for 1/2 a day will not give you enough time to get used to and see beyond these issues / quirks.

Couple that with its price and then line it up against the more forgiving, easier to drive GTi, which costs less and has bags of fun in the pot, then it wouldn't be hard to see how you'd weigh up all the factors and plump for a GTi.

For me though the cost is a big factor in the new R32 that wasn't with the old .:R. My R with all its 'standard' goodies was £23k, but to get the same spec on the new R32 I'd have to spend near £27k / £28k if not a tad over.

For that money I'm in completely different car territory and I'd be seriously looking at a few more £££s and opt for something much better, albeit used!!!!!!! 169144-ok.gif

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[ QUOTE ]

"better" and "value for money" are different questions.

Just suppose the R32 was the same price as a GTI - which car would you choose? - that would answer the better question (and I'm sure some would still take the GTI in the same way they would have manual rather than DSG even if DSG was a no cost option).

Whether the R32 is worth almost £4k more is more of a personal value judgement. If you think the R32 is better and can afford the extra £4k then why not? The R32 is still much cheaper than a lot of cars out there.

[/ QUOTE ]

....Though academic it's a very interesting question. The Mk5 R32 wasn't available when I ordered my GTI. Being both Mk5 Golf bodies they would each offer exactly the same excellent allround functions but I would find the 4WD and V6 sound extremely difficult to resist. I could still trade in and swop now while the GTI is in healthy demand but I'm not that keen on some of the new R32's body styling or the extra insurance and running costs (even discounting the extra purchase cost). I would have happily paid a few grand extra for 4Motion in the GTI subject to how the car felt when driven.

As you say, it all comes down to personal judgements and being human and irrational. Although I've been offered a drive in the new R32 I'm staying with my GTI 169144-ok.gif

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Robin - I'm probably thinking like you but with the difference that the R32 is now available. If the R32 had not been launched then I'd no doubt be very happy with the GTI but I'm sure I would suffer from a bit of "what if" if I don't get the R32, especially if I pull up next to one at some traffic lights.....

I'm also "downgrading" from a Jag XJR with all the toys and 400bhp and the GTI felt one notch too slow for my tastes at motorway speeds, something I'm sure the R32's extra power will fix. (If anyone wants an immaculate 2 year old XJR with 14k miles on the clock for around £35k let me know!)

At the end of the day, if my test drive of the R32 is in anyway disappointing I'll get a GTI (although I must say that the Focus ST is tempting me for the money....)

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[ QUOTE ]

(although I must say that the Focus ST is tempting me for the money....)

[/ QUOTE ]

Ok, going off topic here, but the ST would be my main competitor to the MkV R32, and not the 130i or Astra VXR as most mags are doing. Reason? Well, most say the ST slays the GTi, and everything else in it's class, and it's cheaper. It's 2.5ltrs <u>with</u> a turbo, so loads of potential with a chip on board, and the Focus Chassis is supposed to be up there with the Golfs. Just a shame it's FWD, but at around 10k cheaper for similar specs, it's hard to ignore.

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