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GTI wins an 'Australia's Best Cars' Award


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The MK5 Golf GTI has just been awarded the title of 'Best Sports Car under $57,000 by Australia's Best Cars. Details can be found at:


From the Australia's Best Cars site:

Each year, Australia's top motoring experts put the most popular cars through their paces in 500 kilometres of rigorous road tests to determine Australia's Best Cars.

The cars, ranging from small to luxury and 4WDs, are tested on some of the country's harshest roads and measured on a range of criteria, including handling, safety, security and value.

Australia's Best Cars stand out from other car awards because the judging process incorporates as many measurable elements as possible. Basically, if it can be measured, it is.

In 2005, the trophies will be awarded in 12 categories, many determined by price, so that everyone's budget is catered for:

• Best Small Car

• Best Mid-size Car Under $28,000

• Best Mid-size Car Over $28,000

• Best Large Car

• Best People Mover

• Best Sports Car Under $57,000

• Best Sports Car Over $57,000

• Best Luxury Car Under $57,000

• Best Luxury Car Over $57,000

• Best Recreational 4 Wheel Drive

• Best Luxury 4 Wheel Drive

• Best All-Terrain 4 Wheel Drive

The establishment of the award follows the successful merger in 1999 of former NRMA and RACV car award programs. Australia's Best Cars also incorporates and builds on the expertise of other motoring organisations including RACQ, RAASA, RAC, RACT and AANT.

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Unfortunately I don't think it is able to win the Car of the Year award because it is too derivative of the standard Golf which came 2nd or 3rd last year. I'm not usre the new MX5 made it into the judging. That is the other cr in this "class" that appears to have gotten great accolades downunder.

Also thought it was interesting that the Focus ST preview in this current Wheels didn't mention the GTi as a competitor. The only other type mentioned in the article was the Astra VRX.

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Not sure what you are trying to say (type).

If you were trying to have one of those manual vs DSG arguments then I'm afraid you'll be disapointed.

References in the offical summary are to both the DSG and the manual.

This is what was said:

Volkswagen's feisty Golf GTI has turned tradition on its ear to become Australia's Best Cars first front-wheel-drive sports car winner. In six years of Best Cars, performance models channelling power through the rear wheels or all wheels have grabbed the limelight.

This German car defies those trends as well as superb new rivals to be pick of the performance pile in 2005.

It posted an array of scores more faultless than any winner before. GTI gains nine of the highest rankings available along with half a dozen above average scores.

What that translates to is a safe, snug, well-built and functional hatch which doesn't forego the fun factor. The GTI is rapid yet refined.

It is not the quickest sub-$57k car on offer, that honour goes to the blistering Mistubishi Lancer Evolution IX. However this Golf's heart is never far from its sweet spot with a slick manual shifter or optional auto box providing pleasurable gear changes.

And it defies sports car logic by riding well and keeping din down while giving nothing away in handling or braking.

Its grip levels are rarely daunted by the engine's 147 kW of power and 280 Nm of torque while its balance and steering integrity are stunning. The progressive brakes bite hard and tirelessly.

The GTI only has a temporary use spare tyre but plenty of other practical points. Owners can look forward to surprising value, creature comforts, ample adjustability and a swag of active safety.

Changes to Subaru's Impreza WRX make the AWD cult car a better proposition than before, but it is a shock to realise the GTI has its measure on-road.

Prominence in comfort, security, handling and braking are hallmarks of the Rex but design dominance is now beyond the Japanese sedan. The spectre of high running costs also still dogs the three-time winner.

But value flaws are most evident in the Evo. Now fully legitimate in the Mitsubishi range, and with the warranty to match, this rally-derived AWD will hit the hip pocket.

It detracts from what is an unbelievably fast and theft-resistant sedan, gifted with superb seats and electronics which enhance its glorious grip by transferring torque between wheels and axles during cornering. The Evo is, without question, dominant on road at the cost of ride, refinement and functional merits.

Top 5

Volkswagen Golf Gti, Subaru WRX sedan, Mitsubishi Lancer Evo, Mazda MX-5, Citroen C4 VTS

Previous Results

2005 - Volkswagen Golf GTI

2004 - Subaru WRX

2003 - Subaru WRX & Mazda RX8

2002 - Ford Falcon XR6 Turbo

2001 - Subaru Impreza WRX *

(*Best Sports Car Under $56,000)

2000 - Honda S200 *

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Firstly, Whilst I think DSG is great, I personally prefer a manual for many reasons. The report does make a passing mention of an optional "auto-box" but this surely does the DSG a massive injustice as DSG is not an "auto box" as most people understand the term. DSG has no torque converter, and therefore, in most instances it responds instantaneously. Its the most advanced automatic gearbox I have tried, and is very impressive, if you want/need an automatic gearbox.

I think the point I was trying to make was that it seemed to me they were mainly referring to the manual model, as the letters "DSG" did not appear anywhere in the article, and there was only a passing mention of an auto-box.

No offence intended.

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No offence taken...

It's seems from the way the brief article is written they are awarding the car full stop, and not a particular version of it.

I understand why you would prefer the manual - I was a hard core manual driver until the DSG came along. There is the odd day when I think - the manual would be great but overall the DSG does a fine job.

I get a bit annoyed with journo's who just think of the DSG as an auto box but that's one thing I think we can be certain of - poor quality writing.

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