2009 Volkswagen GTI Review

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7.8
on a scale of 1 to 10
Styling
7.0
Expert Rating
Performance
8.0
Expert Rating
Comfort & Quality
8.0
Expert Rating
Safety
8.0
Expert Rating
Features
8.0
Expert Rating
2017
The Car Connection
2017
The Car Connection

The Car Connection Expert Review

The 2009 Volkswagen GTI is the most conservative-looking of sporty hatches—and a bit pricey for a dressed-up Rabbit—but it redeems itself with the driving experience.

The car experts at TheCarConnection.com studied a wide range of road tests of the 2009 Volkswagen GTI to write this conclusive review. TheCarConnection.com’s editors also drove the 2009 Volkswagen GTI and added driving impressions and details where they help you to sort through other opinions and to choose your perfect car.

The 2009 Volkswagen GTI hatch has the same basic appearance as the Rabbit, though its appearance details—including a racier front end and larger, showier wheels—indicate that it’s considerably more performance-focused. Overall, however, the model is a clear styling evolution of the previous Golf and Golf GTI models. Last year, the tuner influence deepened as VW reduced the ride height about two-thirds of an inch on the two-door and four-door models. For 2009, however, the high-performance R32 model has been dropped.

The GTI’s 2.0 liter, 200-horsepower turbocharged four-cylinder engine works through either a standard six-speed manual transmission or a Direct Shift (DSG) six-speed gearbox, a type of manual where the driver controls gear changes but the clutchwork is handled automatically. Though either transmission delivers spirited performance, TheCarConnection.com recommends the DSG transmission, as it works fluidly with the turbo’s boost, delivering snappy, smooth upshifts and timely downshifts whenever necessary. There’s a manual gate to call the shifts, but you probably won’t need it. Fuel economy is also surprisingly good in the 2009 Volkswagen GTI.

All GTIs come equipped with 17-inch wheels and performance tires, high-capacity brakes, sport suspension, metal-trimmed pedals, and monochromatic exterior paint schemes—in addition to air conditioning, cruise control, and a rear defroster.

The standard safety equipment package in the 2009 Volkswagen GTI includes anti-whiplash head restraints, a tire pressure monitoring system, and front-side and curtain airbags, as well as electronic stability control. The GTI receives good, but not excellent, safety ratings, including four-star results from the federal government in frontal impact and five-star ratings in side impact.

For 2009, the GTI gains a new 18-inch alloy wheel package, available with summer performance tires, and the optional sound system and navigation system receive an upgrade. The optional audio system in the 2009 Volkswagen GTI has USB and aux inputs, plus an SD memory card slot, Audi CD and DVD playback, and 20 gigabytes reserved for audio storage.

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December 3, 2015
2015 Volkswagen GTI 2-Door HB Manual SE

Fast, beyond reproach for handling, head turner and just fun to drive!

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I have had five VW's in the past but all were TDI's going back to 2003 Jetta, 2004 Passatt, 2005.5 Jetta, 2011 Golf and 2012 Touareg so I'm a VW TDI guy! This is my first gas VW since the '68 Bug and it is the... + More »
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November 17, 2015
2015 Volkswagen GTI 4-Door HB DSG SE

A much better vehicle that the 2010 GTI it replaced.

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Great car for the money. Have no regrets and would buy it again. Plan is to replace it with a 2020 Golf R when they become available. That will probably be my last new car since I will be 83 years young in... + More »
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April 20, 2015
For 2015 Volkswagen GTI

This the most fun vehicle I have owned, just a blast to drive.

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Great little car, good features and reliable. Is by far the most enjoyable car to drive that I have owned in a long time.
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