VW: Drift mode in new Golf R is more fun


Thanks to a new rear differential.

The new Volkswagen Golf R, the range-topping model in the Mk8 Golf lineup, gets the optional R Performance Package, which according to the company, makes the hot hatch a perfect drifter on snow, ice, or asphalt.

In addition to 19-inch wheels and a large rear spoiler for extra downforce on the rear axle, the R Performance Package comes with two additional driving modes: Nürburgring and Drift, which can be accessed via a dedicated R button on the steering wheel.

Drift mode opens up a whole new level of driving dynamics and further exploits the potential of torque vectoring by provoking oversteer instead of neutral vehicle handling: the maximum possible torque in this mode is available on the wheel located on the outside of the bend.


The ESC in Drift mode is set to ‘Sport’ by default, meaning the Golf R’s control electronics kick in at a very late stage. However, real drifts are also possible, just turn off the ESC, VW says.

In both Nürburgring and Drift modes, the gearbox has been calibrated to keep the rpm consistently high. In automatic mode, the DSG thus shifts up as late as possible and down as early as possible, which aids power development, VW said.

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