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Automakers are constantly unveiling new concept cars to showcase their brand image and demonstrate where the company is going. But after the concept debuts, and maybe makes the rounds of some local shows, that's pretty much the last we see of it. But what if an automaker could design a concept that it not only showcases at an auto show, but could also let today's video-game generation drive and toy with themselves?

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Dear Old Friend Reinvents Itself, And Its Segment, Yet Again

The whine of the turbocharger. The gentle whoosh of the hatchback's hydraulic lift supports. The mechanical ratcheting and clack of the parking brake. The growling exhaust note with that occasional gurgle.

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Every year, the Volkswagen Group gets each of its mainstream brands to put together a new concept or two to present to the gathered fans at the GTI-Treffen at Wörthersee, Austria. The Volkswagen, Škoda, Seat and Audi brands all participate (to the exclusion of Porsche, Lamborghini, Bugatti and Bentley), but the German industrial giant also gets its apprentices to take part as well. Each year a team of interns transforms the company's prototypical hot hatch – the venerable GTI &

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On March 29, 1974, the very first Volkswagen Golf rolled down the assembly line. That little car has gone on to spawn seven generations, while the Golf name has become one of the models in the hotly contested compact segment, selling over 30 million units during its 40 years on sale.

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Click above for a gallery of the Volkswagen Golf GTI V50

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click above for a high res gallery of the Golf GTD

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Click above for high-res gallery of the VW Golf VI

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