2008 Volkswagen GTI

2008 Volkswagen GTI Review

Note: This review was created when the 2008 Volkswagen GTI was new.

The GTI delivers high performance, handling, and braking, with a well-designed interior and hatchback utility. However, the exterior design could be seen as controversial to VW purists, and its sporty demeanor might be too much for some drivers and passengers.

Pros & Cons

  • Sporty and powerful performance, among the very best in its class
  • Versatile hatchback design on both two- and four-door models
  • Very well-regarded interior design and outstanding front sport seats
  • Competitive, comprehensive list of safety features and technology
  • Firm ride might be too "sporty" for some
  • Exterior style breaks away from purist VW design elements

Research & Ratings

Currently, the Volkswagen GTI has a score of 8.7 out of 10, which is based on our evaluation of 70 pieces of research and data.




Critics' Rating: 9.4
Performance: 8.7
Interior: 8.4
Safety: 8.8
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2008 Volkswagen GTI Overview

The 2008 Volkswagen GTI offers exceptional performance, a versatile hatchback design, and a long list of safety features. In addition, reviews describe a well-designed interior with comfortable seating and high quality materials, even for an upscale automobile. Within the upscale small car and hatchback classes, the GTI has one of the more affordable price tags, especially compared to the inflated cost of a Saab 9-3, or what some consider the poor value of the BMW 1-Series. Car and Driver picked the 2008 GTI as one of its 10 Best Cars for the aforementioned attributes and Automobile Magazine recognizes the GTI as one of its All-Stars for 2008.

Are you in the market for an upscale small car or hatchback but not sure about the VW GTI? The Audi A3 has a refined road demeanor, while the C30 offers outstanding safety and a distinctive exterior.

  • "The latest generation is a long way from the no-frills original, but VW has effectively addressed the fun-to-drive factor without diluting the sophistication, roominess, and high-quality feel that are characteristic of this family." -- Car and Driver
  • "Volkswagen's GTI is magic. What else do you call a diminutive hatchback that can shame supercars? -- Automobile Magazine
  • "With its subtly Teutonic styling, the GTI may not look like a performance car. But those inside will have no doubt about its dynamic capabilities. They also will enjoy the room, comfort and cargo capacity of its versatile interior, now accessible through four doors." -- New Car Test Drive
  • "Usually you give something up for a sporty ride, or you pay a lot to have it all. But the GTI impresses with moxie and manners both." -- U.S. News
  • "The latest GTI is a sweet update of a longtime favorite. Thanks Volkswagen, for not messing up a good thing. -- Sacramento Bee
  • "The GTI has its groove back. This hot hatch is a funky hip-shaker that should appeal to both nostalgic types and a new generation of fans." -- New York Times

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