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Hagerty Employee

First-look Review: 2022 Volkswagen GTI | Hagerty Media

"The most beloved Volkswagen." A VW product planner actually said those words to journalists last week, in a garage at Detroit's M1 Concourse. One of the ground rules of the car business is that manufacturer statements on emotion are generally hooey, but we were there to drive a GTI, so nobody snickered.

No real buttons or switches takes this car off my list. Sad to say as a former GTI owner.

That decision reeks of cost-cutting. I'd rather go for a Mk7 GTI, which you can still buy new, and lean on the extensive VW aftermarket to close the gap between a Mk7 and a Mk8 GTI from the factory.
Intermediate Driver

My '19 GTI was an absolute riot. I kept the entire field at a time trials race behind me last month because it was raining. The next heat it was dry and I got a sunburn on my left arm pointing all the pony cars by. I sold it to Vroom on Monday and all I got was an M235i and a check for three grand. We live in interesting times..

Sad to see the interior changes, I loved the analog gauges and real buttons and knobs.
Pit Crew

Not a fan of the wrap around grill. Hopefully they upgraded the clutch for manual cars to go with the extra power. It was previously the weak link in the powertrain. Was really hoping there would finally be a power outlet near the overhead mirror for easy attachment of a dashcam. Still won't trade my 2017 GTI Sport in for this "upgrade".

While I loved my 2012, and wish I had kept it, because it was a 2 door, and VW stopped selling 2 doors in the US before I bought my 17 Sport…the 17 is a better car in every way, and it will be my last VW, and GTI, as I’m not interested in digital dash, push button gear shifters, and especially all electric. Hopefully I can keep this one running for a LONG time!
Intermediate Driver

The piano black/touchscreen everything inside is a huge step backwards. Clearly VW cheaped out on the Mk8 GTI. Exterior looks terrible as well. Im going to try and get a Mk7.5 while U still can. I want nothing to do with the Mk8