Driving all three manual-equipped 2022 VW models | Golf GTI, Golf R and Jetta GLI

David S.
By David S. Wallens
Dec 19, 2021 | Volkswagen, VW, Jetta, GTI, Golf, Golf R, GRM+, GLI | Posted in Buyer's Guides , News and Notes | From the Feb. 2022 issue | Never miss an article

Photography Courtesy Volkswagen

Despite Volkswagen’s heavy embrace of electric vehicles, it’s still working to save the stick. How? For 2022, the Golf GTI, Golf R and Jetta GLI will all be available with a traditional six-speed manual box. 

In fact, only the U.S. and Canadian markets will get the Golf R wit…

This content is available for GRM+ members only.

You can read it for free in 19 days or subscribe to GRM+ to read right now.

Subscribe now

Join Free Join our community to easily find more Volkswagen, VW, Jetta, GTI, Golf, Golf R, GRM+ and GLI articles.
Comments
View comments on the GRM forums
Colin Wood
Colin Wood Associate Editor
12/15/21 11:41 a.m.

It's pretty neat that it's North America–not Europe–that gets the special treatment and gets the manual transmission in the Golf R.

Thank you, VW.

N o d d a z
N o d d a z GRM+ Memberand UberDork
12/15/21 1:41 p.m.

A GTi in Arrest-me-Red please!

PMRacing
PMRacing GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
12/15/21 2:58 p.m.

I don't buy new cars.  But the new Golf R is tempting me. It may be one of the last 6MT cars and I want to support that. But that much for a Golf?!?  Not sure I can do it. I need to try one if possible. 

preach (dudeist priest)
preach (dudeist priest) GRM+ Memberand Dork
12/15/21 3:50 p.m.

I absolutely love my 6MT Golf R (mk6 though).

AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter)
AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) SuperDork
12/15/21 10:48 p.m.

I may need to drive an R one day.

preach (dudeist priest)
preach (dudeist priest) GRM+ Memberand Dork
12/16/21 3:38 p.m.

In reply to AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) :

If you find yourself somewhere between Boston, MA and Portland, ME. You can drive mine.

AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter)
AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) SuperDork
12/16/21 3:46 p.m.
preach (dudeist priest) said:

In reply to AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) :

If you find yourself somewhere between Boston, MA and Portland, ME. You can drive mine.

That is a part of the country I've always wanted to visit but never have.  I will be in DC this summer.  

docwyte
docwyte PowerDork
12/16/21 4:41 p.m.

The new Golf R has a bunch of features I wish my '19 R had, like memory for the drivers seat, ventilated seats, sunroof, heated steering wheel, better torque vectoring rear diff.  However my R has a MUCH better interior control layout with real buttons and knobs.  You couldn't give me enough money to swap cars simply because of that...

CyberEric
CyberEric Dork
12/16/21 7:19 p.m.

Yeah Jason Cammisa slammed VWs new infotainment and interior design, and he's a VW perv. Sounds like they blew it on that front. 
 

I like the exterior design though. 

I stopped at a local VW dealer today.  They have an R inbound next week with several more on the way over the coming several months.  I want to try on the interior, but assuming that is a good fit I plan to reserve one of them.

docwyte
docwyte PowerDork
12/17/21 10:09 a.m.

In reply to Loweguy5 (I'm just here for the free snacks...) :

You need to try the interior while driving it.  Playing with all the haptic buttons while the car is sitting still won't give you an idea of how much of a PITA it is to actually use them

In reply to docwyte :

I have watched a lot of reviews and fully understand the complaints about the infotainment.  While I get why there are complaints, that interface isn't an issue for me.  The sheer ridiculous performance of the R excuses overly-sensitive touch controls.

I don't need to drive it for every day commuting, so my sense is that the issue is an annoyance, not a deal-breaker for me.

What I want to try on is whether my kids can comfortably sit in the back seat.  The sale of my Stinger GT came because my daughter couldn't get her feet under the back of my driver's seat (like my seat was on the floor, and if I raised it then my head was touching the roof).

I'm hopeful the more upright seating will allow my kids to ride in relative comfort in the back as we may take the occasional trip in it.

docwyte
docwyte PowerDork
12/18/21 11:30 a.m.

In reply to Loweguy5 (I'm just here for the free snacks...) :

It's basically the same size as my Mk7.5 R and that car can carry adults in the back seat pretty comfortably.  So I don't think it'll be an issue.

I'm disappointed to say that I stopped in at a local dealer and tried a 22 GTI on for size and found the backseat super tight if I had the front seat where I would want it.  I am 6'2" and about 270, and the front seat travel and comfort are fantastic.  However when I put my currently 5'3" 13 year old behind me, she will have very little knee or leg room.  The foot space is fine, it's legs that I believe to be an issue.  When the next R lands I'll go try it to verify my impressions.

Oddly, the Jetta has what feels like a massive amount of rear seat space compared to the GTI.  If both had the rear seat room of the GLI, I would put a deposit on an R tomorrow with zero fear of regrets.  

docwyte
docwyte PowerDork
12/21/21 9:23 a.m.

R is exactly the same size as the GTI

Brett_Murphy (Agent of Chaos)
Brett_Murphy (Agent of Chaos) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
12/21/21 11:28 a.m.
AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) said:

I may need to drive an R one day.

Most dealers won't let you drive an R. 

ProDarwin
ProDarwin MegaDork
12/21/21 11:31 a.m.
Loweguy5 (I'm just here for the free snacks...) said:

Oddly, the Jetta has what feels like a massive amount of rear seat space compared to the GTI. 

That doesn't seem odd.  Its 15" longer.

irish44j (Forum Supporter)
irish44j (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
12/21/21 4:56 p.m.
Colin Wood said:

It's pretty neat that it's North America–not Europe–that gets the special treatment and gets the manual transmission in the Golf R.

Thank you, VW.

It's because the competition market is getting pretty low for manual transmissions. I was never a big VW fan but I drive a GTI now mostly because it was one of the few things I liked and could afford that still had a manual. Zero chance I would have bought this car without it.

z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
12/21/21 6:02 p.m.

$44k + TTL is a lot of cheddar. But everything is pretty expensive these days. 

In reply to docwyte :

Yes I'm aware, but they don't have the same seats.  My dealer told me I could drive theirs when it arrives so I can fiddle around with my seating position which will help me formulate a final opinion.

In reply to ProDarwin :

Providing for a trunk....

Our Preferred Partners
DNhLAe7EsD6SCbtPu8zOUlTvuCPuKAli5ZkHwovghqXJ8I2oPIdF52TKDvHb9BDC