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8.6

Overall

Scorecard

Critics' Rating: 9.6
Performance: 8.8
Interior: 8.2
Total Cost of Ownership: 8.9
Safety: 10.0
Reliability:
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2015 Volkswagen GTI Review

The cliché "good things comes in small packages" could have been written with the 2015 Volkswagen GTI in mind. It combines a powerful engine, exciting handling, and a roomy cargo area in a neat little package that is comfortable on both the open road and downtown streets.

Pros & Cons

  • Superior steering and handling
  • Good fuel economy
  • Roomy cargo hold
  • Peppy acceleration
  • Lackluster standard infotainment system

2015 Volkswagen GTI Overview

Is the 2015 Volkswagen GTI a Good Used Car?

The 2015 GTI is available as a two- or four-door hatchback. This hot hatch has excellent safety scores, a low predicted cost of ownership, and strong performance. The GTI also won our 2015 Best Sports Car for the Money award.

Used 2015 Volkswagen GTI Performance and Interior

The 2015 Volkswagen Golf GTI has a 210-horsepower, turbocharged four-cylinder engine. An available Performance package adds 10 horsepower. A six-speed manual transmission is standard, and a six-speed dual-clutch automatic is available.

The GTI is quick from a stop thanks to its responsive turbocharged engine. Both transmissions help the car accelerate quickly. The GTI gets 25 mpg in the city and 34 mpg on the highway, which is good for the class.

In keeping with the GTI's emphasis on handing, the standard driving mode selector – with Normal, Sport, and Individual settings – adjusts steering feel and throttle response. It is especially responsive in Sport mode. Front-wheel drive is standard.

Read more about GTI performance »

The 2015 GTI seats five on standard heated cloth seats. Leather seats, a sunroof, and sport front seats are available. The front seats are supportive, with ample shoulder room. The GTI's cabin is spacious and the rear seats have plenty of room for tall passengers, especially in the four-door model.

There are lower anchors and tethers for child seats in the rear outboard seats.

Standard features in the GTI include a 5.8-inch touch screen, Bluetooth, satellite radio, and voice recognition. Available features include a nine-speaker Fender sound system, navigation, and a push-button start.

The standard infotainment system is unimpressive. It’s laid out well but its graphics are subpar. However, the system is responsive and easy to use.

The GTI has 22.8 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seats and 52.7 cubic feet with the rear seats folded down – a remarkable amount for a hatchback.

Read more about GTI interior »

Used 2015 Volkswagen GTI Prices

The average starting price for a base S trim Volkswagen GTI is about $18,000. Prices vary based on the vehicle’s condition, mileage, features, and location.

See the Best Used Car Deals »

We Did the Research for You: 22 Reviews Analyzed

We gathered and analyzed 22 professional reviews, along with crash test results, reliability ratings, and cost of ownership estimates, to help you decide if the 2015 Volkswagen GTI is the right used car for you.

Why You Can Trust Us

Our editorial team has more than 75 years of combined experience in the auto industry. To ensure that our reviews remain impartial, we don't accept expensive gifts or trips from carmakers, and a third party places the ads on our site.

How Reliable Is the 2015 Volkswagen GTI?

J.D. Power and Associates give the 2015 Volkswagen GTI a predicted reliability rating of three out of five, which is about average.

Read more about GTI reliability »

How Safe Is the GTI?

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration did not conduct crash tests on the 2015 GTI. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety named the GTI a 2015 Top Safety Pick and gave it Good scores (the highest possible) in all crashworthiness categories.

There are no advanced safety features standard in the GTI. Available safety features include a rearview camera, front and rear park assist, and forward collision warning.

See GTI safety scores »

Should I Consider Another Used GTI?

The 2015 GTI is the first model year of the car’s seventh generation, which includes the 2017 GTI. 2016 models saw a rearview camera added to the standard features list, as well as new available driver assistance features and a redesigned available infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. If these updates don't appeal to you, go with a 2015 model to save money.

Compare the 2015 and 2016 GTI »

Which Used Volkswagen GTI Is Right for Me?

This hot hatch comes in three trims – S, SE, and Autobahn – and is available as either a two- or four-door hatchback. For the best value, go with the midlevel SE model, which comes standard with a rearview camera, leather upholstery, and the Fender sound system. It is available with the Driver Assistance and Performance packages, which add forward collision warning, front and rear park assist, and performance enhancements.

You may want to consider a certified pre-owned GTI for extra coverage. Volkswagen provides a two-year/24,000-mile limited warranty on all of its certified pre-owned vehicles. Each CPO Volkswagen must pass a 160-point inspection. Additional benefits like towing and roadside assistance may be available, so read the Volkswagen warranty page carefully.

Read more about certified pre-owned vehicles »

2015 Volkswagen GTI and Other Cars to Consider

Which Is Better: 2015 Volkswagen GTI or 2015 Subaru WRX?

Like the GTI, the Subaru WRX has a strong engine, responsive acceleration, sharp handling, and communicative steering, but the GTI gets better fuel economy. The GTI also has a superior interior with high-quality materials and a sleek design. It is also very quiet, even at highway speeds. By comparison, the WRX's interior is dull, and some wind noise creeps in when the car is at highway speeds. Additionally, the WRX has substantially less cargo space than the GTI. The Volkswagen offers a better overall package.

Which Is Better: 2015 Volkswagen GTI or 2015 Ford Focus ST?

The Ford Focus' ST performance hatchback has a sport-tuned suspension that provides athletic handling and more horsepower (with 252) than the GTI. Like the GTI, the Focus has top-notch materials in its cabin, but its rear-seat space is lacking, and it has less overall cargo space than the GTI. The Focus also has one of the lowest predicted reliability scores in its class, making the GTI the better choice.

Which Is Better: 2015 Volkswagen GTI or 2015 Audi A3?

The Audi A3 is luxury small car and the winner of our 2015 Best Upscale Small Car for the Money award. However, it lags the GTI when it comes to rear-seat and cargo space. The A3's performance model, the S3, has a muscular engine that produces 292 horsepower. Like the GTI, the A3 has agile handling and is fun to drive. Both cars get good fuel economy, but the A3's infotainment system is more advanced than the GTI's. If you want more space, go with the GTI. If you want superior technology, go with the A3.

Compare the GTI, WRX, and A3 »

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