The reveal date was confirmed as the brand released a preview image of the BMW M135i rival showing its tailgate adorned with a central R logo. However, we’ve already seen the car with very light disguise out testing as a prototype on several occasions.
The last sighting of the hot hatchback was actually as the estate, cunningly disguised as an Alltrack model to try to throw spy photographers off the scent.
The prototype gives itself away as the top-rung performance model with its large wheels and low-profile tyres, blue brake calipers, prominent air intakes and rear spoiler. Another clue to its true identity is the quad-exit exhaust system, which matches that of the previously spotted Golf R test mules.
A prototype of the hatchback was photographed up close earlier this year, giving us a view of the interior. It shows the new model sticks to the formula of its predecessor, with understated performance the order of the day. The view inside shows that there will be R-branded sports seats to mark out the cabin, but otherwise it’ll be familiar Golf Mk8 fare.
Although not yet confirmed, power outputs for all of the hot Mk8 Golf variants (the GTI, GTI TCR, GTD and R) leaked out earlier this year via a slideshow from a brand presentation.
The slide revealed that the R will put out 329bhp – a 33bhp increase – from a heavily boosted version of the EA888 turbocharged 2.0-litre petrol motor, as featured in the new Tiguan R and Arteon R. However, it’s possible that it will debut first with slightly less power.