With 125kW, the GTD might fall short of the petrol GTI's 155kW by 30kW, but the GTD's all-important Newton metres, 350 of them in fact, betters the GTI's 280Nm. It is comfortably the most powerful diesel-powered Golf in the range - with the looks of the GTI as a bonus.
It wears a slightly different badge and it's short one pair of tail pipes, but all in all, the styling of the 2010 Volkswagen Golf GTD is largely identical to its petrol sibling, the GTI.
With GTI looks, 17-inch alloy wheels as standard (18-inch rims available as an option), 225mm tyres and a 15mm lower ride height than the regular Golf, the GTD looks a good deal sportier than the 103 TDI; the next diesel down.
As with the GTI, the diesel-powered GTD gets a honeycomb upper and lower grille, with large foglights in the front bumper.
One of the many subtle differences for the GTD are the chrome strips top and bottom of the upper grille - as opposed to the red strips that stand out so prominently on the GTI.
Inside, the GTI theme continues, giving the 2010 GTD the same 'top sport seats', trimmed in the GTI's famous tartan pattern but with a grey tone where red would normally appear.
The three-spoke leather sports steering wheel is there, its lower spoke emblazoned with the GTD name rather than GTI.
There is also leather trimming to the parking brake grip, along with the gear knob and surround. The instrument and door trim areas are treated with 'Black Stripe' gloss-black highlights.
Other interior trim features include chrome bezels for many of the switches, while the black-on-(tartan)-black theme continues with a black roofliner and black pillar trim.
As with the rest of the Golf range, rear luggage space is 350 litres with the back passenger seats up, and 1305 litres when laid flat.
Standard features for the 2010 Golf GTD are virtually identical to the GTI, including dual-zone climate control, air-conditioning, six-disc CD changer with touchscreen, MP3 compatibility, Aux connectivity (Bluetooth optional), and an eight-speaker sound system.
The GTD also features seven airbags as standard, including driver and passenger front and side airbags, driver’s knee airbag and curtain airbags front and rear.
Below, there is ABS braking, stability control, brake assist and electronic brake pressure distribution.
The 2010 Volkswagen Golf GTD is powered by a 2.0 litre common-rail TDI turbo-diesel engine, producing 125kW at 4200rpm and 350Nm of torque between 1750 and 2500rpm.
By comparison, the GTI lists 155kW and 280Nm, while the 103TDI offers 103kW and 320Nm of torque.
The diesel engine is paired with a choice of either a six-speed manual transmission or a six-speed dual-clutch DSG transmission, and according to Volkswagen, the DSG will get the GTD to 100km/h in a respectable 8.1 seconds.
Fuel consumption is listed at 5.8 l/100km, with average CO2 emissions of 152g/km.
The GTD rides on sports suspension 15mm lower than the regular Golf (22mm for the GTI), and the system has been tuned specifically for the GTD.
Up front, the familiar strut-type suspension operates with helical springs and telescopic dampers, while at the rear can be found a multi-link setup.
As an option, the new Golf GTD can be ordered with Adaptive Chassis Control, designed to react to the road and the driving situation, modifying the damper characteristics accordingly.
The system also reacts to acceleration, braking and steering inputs, which Volkswagen says helps to minimise conflict between a sporty ride and a comfortable one.
The 2010 Volkswagen Golf GTD is available now.
- 2010 Volkswagen Golf GTD - six-speed manual - $39,290
- 2010 Volkswagen Golf GTD - six-speed DSG - $41,790
- Metallic / Pearl Effect Paint - $500
- Electric Glass Sunroof - $1,900
- Vancouver 18" alloy wheels (4) - $1,200
- Dynaudio Excite 300W Audio - $1,300
- Satellite Navigation RNS510 - $2,500
- RNS510 with Dynauido Excite - $3,500
- Rear View Camera (RVC) (with RCD510, RNS510 or Dynaudio) - $500
- Media Device Interface (MDI) - $270
- Vienna Leather Upholstery - $3,300
- Electric Driver's Seat (only with Leather & 5 Door) - $600
- Park Assist - $1,400
- Adaptive Chassis Control - $1,500
- Bi-Xenon Headlights with Cornering Lights - $2,000
Note: prices are Manufacturer's List Price and do not include on-road costs or dealer delivery.