The annual GTI festival at Lake Wörthersee in Austria has exploded over the years into a celebration of all things hot-hatch in the Volkswagen Group – including concept cars and new debuts from Audi, Seat and Skoda – but the event has always been about VWs at heart. And the brand central to the empire isn't about to sit it out.

At the heart of VW's motorcade for this year's pocket-rocket fest is the Polo WRC Street, a preview of a special edition modeled on the actual rally car which Volkswagen Motorsport will be fielding in the top-level rally series next year. The street version features a 220-horsepower 2.0-liter TSI four-cylinder – significantly more than the existing 180-hp Polo GTI and a whole lot of muscle for such a little car – with an aggressive aero package and of course the requisite decals. In other words, it is, for all intents and purposes, a Polo R with some stripes.

VW will also be showcasing the competition-spec Polo R-WRC. And Wörthersee being centered around the Golf GTI, is also bringing the GTI Cabriolet that debuted in concept form at the same location last year and in production form at the Geneva Motor Show just a couple of months ago, plus a pair of black and white GTI concepts. Keep reading for the full press release and scope out the trio of images previewing the Polo WRC Street for a closer look at what Wolfsburg is driving eastwards.
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Polo WRC Street concept car: 2.0-litre engine with 220 PS

Wolfsburg / Reifnitz, 17 May 2012: For more than 30 years, the 'GTI Meeting at Wörthersee' has been a holiday in the calendar of fans of sporty Volkswagen vehicles. An event that will also this year see fans from right across Europe coming to the largest GTI meeting in the world in Austria. At this show of the superlatives, besides the Golf GTI Cabriolet, Volkswagen and Volkswagen Motorsport will be presenting the Polo R-WRC, the Polo WRC Street special edition model plus two further Golf GTI concept cars.

Golf GTI Cabriolet: Following its world premiere at the Geneva International Motor Show, GTI fans visiting the legendary Wörthersee event will have the chance to experience close up the dynamic advantages and sophisticated equipment features of this sports car from Wolfsburg. The key component of this highly dynamic soft top Golf is the 2.0-litre engine with 210 PS fitted for the first time in the Cabriolet. It is available with two engine/gearbox versions: as a manual gearbox or with the fast-changing dual-clutch gearbox (DSG), each with 6 speeds. A standard feature for all customers who get to indulge in the sporty driving performance of the Golf GTI Cabriolet is the XDS electronic differential lock on the front axle, which ensures perfect traction, enhanced agility and the utmost driving stability. To complete the picture, this hot hatch is fitted with 17-inch alloy wheels of the type 'Denver' (18-inch wheels of the type 'Detroit' are optionally available) in addition to a new diffuser with chrome tailpipes.

Polo WRC Street: From motor racing to the street is the motto of the Polo WRC Street concept car. At Wörthersee, Volkswagen will be presenting for the first time a preview of an extremely sporty small series, which is due to be launched in late 2013. With its highly unique and distinctive design, this model cuts an impressive figure with its rear spoiler, diffuser, sports suspension and an inscription with R-WRC logos. A powerful 220 PS 2.0-litre TSI engine produces motorsport-like performance.

Polo R-WRC: With the newly developed Polo R WRC, Volkswagen Motorsport is presenting a road-going prototype for the FIA World Rally Championship. The "hottest Polo ever" – as it was called by Volkswagen Head of Development Dr. Ulrich Hackenberg even at its first official airing – will be starting its tour around the globe from 2013 at numerous WRC races. At the heart of this racing version beats a 1.6-litre TSI engine with approx. 300 PS power output, which ensures impressive acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h in 4.1 seconds.

GTI Black Dynamic: Black as the night, with a red/black colour concept and lowered sports suspension, the 'GTI Black Dynamic' will be making an appearance at Wörthersee. Since October last year, nine Volkswagen apprentices – four young women and five young men – have been working on their 'Apprentice Golf GTI 2012'. Their objective: vehicle concept design, styling, engine version and numerous details are meant to convey their interpretation of a classic sports car. Elegant and simple but with numerous stylish details, the 'Black Dynamic' is a real headturner. It also features a 1,800 Watt sound system with nine loudspeakers, which takes up the entire boot space. This year's 'Golf GTI Black Dynamic' is the fifth vehicle project to make its debut amongst the petrol heads in Austria.

Golf GTI 'White Concept': The attractive design study Golf GTI 'White Concept' is characterised by its remarkable 'Oryx White matt' paintwork. The vehicle interior affords an exciting black/red contrast. In addition to the sports seats in Nappa leather, red contrasting stitching adorns numerous details such as the steering wheel, handbrake lever and door armrests. A door sill trim – with the GTI logo and honeycomb pattern in White Matt and Aluminium – go to complete the unique appearance of the Golf GTI 'Concept White'.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 3 Years Ago
      Wow, that is a hot little hatch. I really like the look and that engine must be insane in that little car. Awesome. ..
      • 3 Years Ago
      Proper rims and painting. I want it.
      • 3 Years Ago
      220 hp TSI might be the next GTI engine. Would be reasonable if torque was up to around 260, and mileage slightly improved.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Can someone explain to me why VW would be concerned about the Polo cutting into Golf/GTI sales for the US market but not elsewhere int he world?
      • 3 Years Ago
      Remind me WHY don't we have the POLO here in the States?! This would be a fun car to drive.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Ooooo-weee....THAT is clean! Very nice! I'd totally drive that.
      • 3 Years Ago
      It's the WRC edition but they give it extremely low profile tires? Odd. It does look really good, though.
        • 3 Years Ago
        It's the rally-inspired street edition.
      • 3 Years Ago
      A mini competitor that could be offered at a lower price then the JCW edition cooper S's. VW bring this here now.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Again another amazing VW that I doubt we'll see here in NA, maybe 15 years... lmao. VW is so slow to react, every manufacturer will be selling hover cars and personal spaceships. VW will still be pushing their americana **** boxes here.
      • 3 Years Ago
      AWD or GTFO.
      • 3 Years Ago
      What a Joke of a car. A rally car with front wheel drive... I hate big corporates for their ignorance. And they have a 4x4 basis in the Audi A1... With 4x4 I would buy it directly. Like this its a marketing gimmik
        • 3 Years Ago
        The WRC one does have 4x4.
        • 3 Years Ago
        There have been great rally cars with FWD, like the original Mini Cooper, and lower classes like Super 1600 are also FWD. It's a cheaper way to have fun going too fast on skinny roads with trees on each side.
      • 3 Years Ago
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