Taut, agile and quick, the latest version of Volkswagen's venerable hot hatch is fun to drive and so much more. The GTI is one of the most practical, easy-to-live-with choices among sporty cars. It's quiet and civilized enough that it doesn't wear you out on a long drive. The interior is very well finished, with luxurious materials, comfortable and supportive seats, and a comprehensive yet easy-to-use infotainment system.
Alerts
There is 1 recall on this vehicle. Learn More.

Road Test Results

Performance
Acceleration Acceleration Acceleration tests are conducted on a smooth, flat pavement straightaway at the track. Time, speed, and distance measurements are taken with a precise GPS-based device that’s hooked to a data-logging computer.
0 to 60 mph 0 to 60 mph (sec.) The time in seconds that a vehicle takes to reach 60 mph from a standstill with the engine idling.
Transmission Transmission Transmission performance is determined by shifting smoothness, response, shifter action, and clutch actuation for manual transmissions.
Braking Braking The braking rating is a composite of wet and dry stopping distances and pedal feel. Braking distance is from 60 mph, with no wheels locked.
Emergency Handling Emergency Handling Several factors go into the rating, including the avoidance maneuver speed and confidence, as well as how the vehicle behaves when pushed to its limit.
Comfort / Convenience
Ride Ride Our expert judgment of how well the suspension isolates and absorbs road imperfections and how steady it keeps the body on various road surfaces.
Noise Noise Our expert judgment of the vehicle's interior noise level in everyday driving.
Front Seat Comfort Front Seat Comfort Our judgment of how comfortable the front seat is for drivers of various heights.
Rear Seat Comfort Rear Seat Comfort Our judgment of how comfortable the rear seat is for two passengers to sit across.
Interior Fit and Finish Interior Fit and Finish An expert evaluation of the interior quality and craftsmanship.
Trunk/Cargo Area Trunk/Cargo Area Our rating is based on the amount of luggage or cargo space that a vehicle has in the trunk or cargo area.
Fuel Economy & Emissions
Fuel Economy Fuel Economy We perform our own fuel-economy tests, independent of the government's often-quoted EPA figures and the manufacturers' claims. Using a precise fuel-flow measuring device spliced into the fuel line, we run two separate circuits to represent city and highway consumption.
CR's Overall Mileage CR's Overall Mileage CR's overall mileage is a composite of measured fuel usage on a prescribed city course and highway cruising; and CR's 150-mile test trip of mixed driving, if tested. In recent road tests, we've discontinued the 150-mile trip test.
CR's City Mileage CR's City Mileage Measured fuel usage on a prescribed city course.
CR's Highway Mileage CR's Highway Mileage Measured fuel usage on a prescribed highway cruising.
Annual Fuel Cost Annual Fuel Cost The cost and amount of fuel used in 12,000 miles and is calculated from CR's overall mileage.
Greenhouse Gas Greenhouse Gas The Greenhouse Gas Rating represents the amount of carbon dioxide the vehicle emits compared to other vehicles of the same model year. This score from the EPA ranges from 1 (worst) to 10 (best).
Smog Rating Smog Rating The Smog Rating represents the amount of health-damaging and smog-forming airborne pollutants the vehicle emits compared to other vehicles of the same model year. This score from the EPA ranges from 1 (worst) to 10 (best).

Owner Reports

Worse Better
Reliability History Reliability History The reliability charts are based on responses on hundreds of thousands of vehicles from our latest Annual Auto Survey. Consumer Reports subscribers reported on any serious problems they had with their vehicles during the past 12 months that they considered serious because of cost, failure, safety, or downtime, in any of the trouble spots included in the table below. The results are presented relative to the average model that year. Extra weight is given to the more serious areas such as major engine or transmission problems. Based on this data and further analysis, we predict reliability for the latest year. N/A indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.
2000
NA
2001
NA
2002
NA
2003
NA
2004
NA
2005
NA
2006
NA
2007
NA
2008
NA
2009
NA
2010
NA
2011
NA
2012
NA
2013
NA
2014
NA
2015
2016
2017
2018
2019
2020
NA
Reliability Trouble Spots
Engine Major Engine Major Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.
NA
Engine Minor Engine Minor Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.
NA
Engine Cooling Engine Cooling Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.
NA
Transmission Major Transmission Major Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.
NA
Transmission Minor Transmission Minor Gear selector or linkage, leaks, transmission computer, transmission sensor or solenoid, clutch adjustment, rough shifting, slipping transmission.
NA
Drive System Drive System Driveshaft or axle, CV joint, differential, transfer case, 4WD/AWD components, driveline vibration, traction control, electronic stability control (ESC), electrical failure.
NA
Owner Satisfaction Owner Satisfaction To learn about satisfaction, CR has collected survey data from our annual survey on more than half a million vehicles. Our subscribers provide great insights into their satisfaction by answering one simple question: If they had it to do all over again, would they definitely buy or lease the same model? In addition, respondents also rate their cars in six categories: driving experience, comfort, value, styling, audio, and climate systems. N/A indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.
2000
NA
2001
NA
2002
NA
2003
NA
2004
NA
2005
NA
2006
NA
2007
NA
2008
NA
2009
NA
2010
NA
2011
NA
2012
2013
2014
NA
2015
2016
2017
2018
2019
2020
NA
Driving Experience Driving Experience Includes acceleration and handling
Comfort Comfort Includes seats, climate control, noise, and ride
Value Value Did you get what you wanted relative to the price you paid?
Styling Styling How it looks inside and out
Safety Equipment
ABS standard. Head protection air bags standard from 2002. ESC available from 2002, standard from 2006.
Road Test

Taut, agile and quick, the latest version of Volkswagen's venerable hot hatch is fun to drive and so much more. The GTI is one of the most practical, easy-to-live-with choices among sporty cars. It's quiet and civilized enough that it doesn't wear you out on a long drive. The interior is very well finished, with luxurious materials, comfortable and supportive seats, and a comprehensive yet easy-to-use infotainment system. Now in its seventh generation, the GTI has matured into a capable, refined, and sophisticated piece of machinery with the latest electronic features.

Power comes from a 210-hp, 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine shared with other members of the Audi and VW family, matched with either a six-speed manual or six-speed dual-clutch (DSG) automatic transmission. The engine provides plenty of grunt with either transmission, although the DSG lacks the finesse of a conventional automatic around town. We recorded 29 mpg overall with our manual transmission car, which is commendable for a car with this kind of performance.

Seating
2 front, 3 rear
Drive Wheels
Front
Warranty

In most cases, automotive warranties are based on the vehicle identification number (VIN), and the warranty will be valid regardless of ownership. The dealership can tell you exactly how much warranty is left.

Read more about extended warranties
Body Styles
2-door hatchback
4-door hatchback
Transmissions Available
  • 6-speed Sequential
  • 6-speed Manual
Engines Available
  • 2-liter 4 turbo (210 hp)
  • 2-liter 4 turbo (220 hp)

Owner Reported Trouble Spots

The Reliability score is based on our latest subscriber survey of 2017 Volkswagen GTI owners. The owner comments describe problems respondents experienced with this vehicle.

Body Integrity

Squeaks, rattles, wind noises, loose or cracked seals and/or weather-stripping, air and water leaks.

What Owners Say

Air or water leaks

"After a heavy rainstorm, we noticed that the interior ceiling and sidebar were damp. Apparently it was from a faulty seal in the sunroof."

Anonymous, OR (2017 Volkswagen GTI Sport 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

"Water leak in passenger floor due to sun roof vents getting clogged"

Anonymous, TX (2017 Volkswagen GTI Autobahn 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)
Squeaks or rattles

"The sunroof makes noise"

Anonymous, MN (2017 Volkswagen GTI SE 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

"I had a number of rattles and squeeks. The center console rattled loudly over 50mph. There was a loud squeek in the trunk with every bump. And a noise coming from the front hood when using the car in "sport mode". I took it to the dealership and reported the first two noises and they fixed them. I haven't taken it for the 3rd noise coming probably from the "engine noise speaker". Finally, the door pockets are very rattl-y. In my previous car water bottles didn't used to rattle, but in the GTI th"

Anonymous, WA (2017 Volkswagen GTI Autobahn 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

"driver's seat creaks during turns"

Anonymous, CA (2017 Volkswagen GTI SE 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

"The rear hatch trim squeeked badly and was replaced under warranty. Then the passenger door squeaked and the entire door panel was replaced under warranty. The problems are now fixed"

Anonymous, SC (2017 Volkswagen GTI Autobahn 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

"Annoying creaking sounds when driving slowly over bumpy roads"

Anonymous, NC (2017 Volkswagen GTI S 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

"rattle noises on moonroof"

Ariel P., MI (2017 Volkswagen GTI SE 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

"Squeaking from area around moonroof"‿ started maybe18 months after I owned the car. Told dealer when I brought it in for service but it was never resolved."

Anonymous, CA (2017 Volkswagen GTI SE 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

"straight out of the dealership had rattles on the moonroof that took three trips to service to address, 85% only. After 30 months there are more to which I am used to now. Other than this the car is good."

Anonymous, MI (2017 Volkswagen GTI SE 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

"Rubber seals on sun roof and doors squeak-have tried multiple remedies with little satisfaction."

Anonymous, TX (2017 Volkswagen GTI Autobahn 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

"Had taken the vehicle to address rattle on moonroof three times to different dealerships. Service bulletins performed and the noise has diminished considerably. One issue with moonroof is the interior sliding fabric cover opens while driving, and this is annoying."

Ariel P., MI (2017 Volkswagen GTI SE 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

"intermittent sunroof rattles"

Marla B., NJ (2017 Volkswagen GTI SE 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

"The sunroof squeaks, usually after the car has been driven for a while (about 20 to 30 minutes). Opening or popping up the sunroof stops the noise."

Stephen K., CT (2017 Volkswagen GTI SE 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

In-car Electronics

CD or DVD players, radio, speakers, GPS, communication system (e.g., OnStar), display screen freezes or goes blank, phone pairing (e.g. Bluetooth), voice control commands, steering wheel controls, portable music device interface (e.g., iPod/MP3 player), backup or other camera/sensors.

What Owners Say

Apple CarPlay

"software fault that was resolved by a dealer installed patch via a service bulletin. Airplay wouldn't consistently connect."

Michael H., VA (2017 Volkswagen GTI Autobahn 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

"The app does not work properly. It frecuently freezes up or some features don't work."

Anonymous, TX (2017 Volkswagen GTI 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)
Display screen freezes up

"The entire head unit has failed twice in the first year. System plays for about five minutes then reboots itself. This occurs about five times then entire head unit shuts down completely. If car is turned off and then back on system will come back on and cycle of shutting down starts all over. Dealership has replaced unit twice."

Steve K., PA (2017 Volkswagen GTI Sport 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)
External music device interface (e.g., smart phone, MP3 player)

"Similar to the radio, the system will freeze and eventually resets itself."

Anonymous, (2017 Volkswagen GTI Sport 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)
Hardware replacement

"The VW Infotainment System froze up and became inoperable. It was fixed under the car's warranty by replacement of a module within it."

Anonymous, NC (2017 Volkswagen GTI Autobahn 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

"Complete unit was not operating. Dealer replaces the unit"

Anonymous, ON (2017 Volkswagen GTI SE 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)
In-dash navigation system (GPS)

"There was a defective part that was replaced. It was a widespread problem"

Anonymous, NY (2017 Volkswagen GTI Autobahn 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)
Radio

"Periodically the system will freeze and not play. Eventually the system resets itself and resumes functioning properly."

Anonymous, (2017 Volkswagen GTI Sport 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

Electric System

Alternator, starter, hybrid battery and related systems, regular battery, battery cables, engine harness, coil, ignition switch, electronic ignition, distributor or rotor failure, spark plugs and wires failure.

What Owners Say

Body control module

"Orange light came on and took to dealer"

Anonymous, FL (2017 Volkswagen GTI Autobahn 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)
Headlights

"Adaptive lighting failed intermittently. Fixed by dealer"

Anonymous, VT (2017 Volkswagen GTI Autobahn 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

"Right front headlight was pointed down focused about 20 feet in front of vehicle. Brought it in to the dealer for repair. Got car back next day. Headlight was now aimed at the 2nd story of houses. Took it back in on a Thursday, got called on Monday saying that they neede to order parts. Got car back on Tuesday, lighting was fine but the right front turn signal didn't work. 2 more days to fix that. Dealer appears to be totally incompetent. Took my 2014 CC in for an airbag recall, 2 hr job per recall notice. Took car in Wednesday morning, didnt get it back until Friday."

Paul L., OH (2017 Volkswagen GTI SE 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

"One of the daytime running lights failed. A part was replaced under warranty."

Anonymous, IN (2017 Volkswagen GTI Autobahn 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)
Keyless entry

"Failed occasionally, locking me out. Fixed by dealer"

Anonymous, VT (2017 Volkswagen GTI Autobahn 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)
Warning lights

"Recall cover warning light switch."

Anonymous, MN (2017 Volkswagen GTI S 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)
Wiper motor or washer

"After running the rear wiper washer, the nozzle continued to drip small amounts of fluid when it was turned off. The dealer replaced the washer under warranty."

Stephen K., CT (2017 Volkswagen GTI SE 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

Exhaust

Muffler, pipes, catalytic converter, exhaust manifold, leaks.

What Owners Say

Exhaust leaks

"Somehow the smell of fuel/oil and engine fumes makes it into the cabin. Unsure of the source, dealership inspected the car and found no issues. Problem persists, mostly in colder days."

Ariel P., MI (2017 Volkswagen GTI SE 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)
Muffler

"It was not tight"

Anonymous, MS (2017 Volkswagen GTI Unsure 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)
Other/unsure

"One of the 8 parking sensors stopped working and had to be replaced (under warranty)."

Jonathan H., TN (2017 Volkswagen GTI Autobahn 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

"One of the 8 parking sensors stopped working and had to be replaced under warranty"

Jonathan H., TN (2017 Volkswagen GTI Autobahn 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

"Failure of Blind Spot monitoring control module. Affected rear cross-traffic system too."

Anonymous, TN (2017 Volkswagen GTI Autobahn 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

"Airbag warning light came on, automatically disabling airbag system (according to dealer). Dealer looked at it, could not find a problem and reset the system. Airbag light turned back on within 1 day. Took to back dealer, again could not find an issue. Tech rewired the driver-side seat airbags and this fixed the problem (they suspect loose wiring)."

Anonymous, FL (2017 Volkswagen GTI SE 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

Engine Cooling

Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.

What Owners Say

Antifreeze leaks

"Leak to thermostat housing. Replaced under warranty."

Anonymous, TX (2017 Volkswagen GTI S 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)
Thermostat

"Car leaked coolant from the thermostat at low mileage. This is apparently a common issue with this car. I also smell antifreeze from the overflow after driving which has gone undiagnosed."

Anonymous, MI (2017 Volkswagen GTI SE 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

"Thermostat was replaced with water pump. Under guarantee"

Anonymous, OH (2017 Volkswagen GTI Sport 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)
Water pump

"Factory water pump housing leaked. Fixed under warranty 2 years ago. Went to another shop for service and they said 2nd water pump was leaking as well. Went back to dealer for another water pump. Heat stopped as well. Fixed under warranty"

Anonymous, (2017 Volkswagen GTI Sport 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

"Water pump was leaking. Had to be replaced. Was covered by guarantee"

Anonymous, OH (2017 Volkswagen GTI Sport 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

Climate System

Blower (fan) motor, A/C compressor, condenser, evaporator, heater system, automatic climate control, refrigerant leakage, electrical failure.

What Owners Say

Blower (fan) motor

"Made noise"

Anonymous, NC (2017 Volkswagen GTI SE 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)
Refrigerant leaks

"Replaced leaking water pump"

Anonymous, CA (2017 Volkswagen GTI Sport 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

Brakes

Antilock system (ABS), parking brake, master cylinder, calipers, rotors, pulsation or vibration, squeaking, brake failure or wear.

What Owners Say

Antilock system (ABS)

"I believe it is a sensor problem. On starting the car, ABS, and several other lights come on in the dash."

Anonymous, SC (2017 Volkswagen GTI Autobahn 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)
Pulsation or vibration

"the gti brakes are not up to par, we feel that the brakes vibrate with normal wear and tear, I'm assuming it's a heat dissipation problem or poor specifications, in any event not as good as our 2012 VW golf TDI in the braking department"

Anonymous, ON (2017 Volkswagen GTI Autobahn 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

Transmission Minor

Gear selector or linkage, leaks, transmission computer, transmission sensor or solenoid, clutch adjustment, rough shifting, slipping transmission.

What Owners Say

Clutch adjustment

"Have not got repaired yet but clutch is slipping in 6th gear between 2200 and 3000 RPM under hard acceleration."

Anonymous, GA (2017 Volkswagen GTI Sport 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)
Rough shifting

"Let me first add, that this car resides in a garage in N. California. When the car is cold, transmission clunks and delays when shifting from R to D"

Anonymous, CA (2017 Volkswagen GTI Sport 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

Fuel System

Check engine light, sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor), emission control devices (includes EGR), engine computer, engine computer, fuel cap, fuel gauge/sender, fuel injection system, fuel pump, fuel leaks, stalling or hesitation.

What Owners Say

Emission control devices (includes EGR)

"Car has had repeated issues with the secondary air injection system. It generates a check engine light and then they replace the pump or valves and it comes back a few weeks later."

Anonymous, MI (2017 Volkswagen GTI SE 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

Drive System

Driveshaft or axle, CV joint, differential, transfer case, 4WD/AWD components, driveline vibration, traction control, electronic stability control (ESC), electrical failure.

What Owners Say

Driveline vibration

"Wheels bent by potholes caused front wheel bearing failure"

Anonymous, CA (2017 Volkswagen GTI Autobahn 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

Body Hardware

Power or manual windows, locks and latches, tailgate, hatch or trunk, doors or sliding doors, mirrors, seat controls, safety belts, sunroof, convertible top.

What Owners Say

Tailgate, hatch or trunk

"Tailgate bottom edge rubs on bumper cover left corner rear. Didn't get repaired because afraid VW dealer would cause collateral damage"

Anonymous, TN (2017 Volkswagen GTI S 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

Transmission Major

Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.

What Owners Say

Clutch replacement

"The car has only 18,000 miles on it and the clutch started going out. Besides being practically new, the other weird thing is that it started going out in 6th gear, not first. We were told it wasn't covered by warranty! We are really upset by this, because a clutch should last longer than 18,000 miles."

Anonymous, OR (2017 Volkswagen GTI Sport 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

Paint/Trim

Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling), loose interior and exterior trim or moldings, rust.

Engine Major

Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.

Suspension

Shocks or struts, ball joints, tie rods, wheel bearings, alignment, steering linkage (includes rack and pinion), power steering (pumps and hoses, leaks), wheel balance, springs or torsion bars, bushings, electronic or air suspension.

Engine Minor

Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.

Power Equipment

Cruise control, clock, warning lights, body control module, keyless entry, wiper motor or washer, tire pressure monitor, interior or exterior lights, horn, gauges, 12V power plug, remote engine start, alarm or security system

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