Good Reason for Spektrum Program to Return, Next R Will Look Super Aggressive

When the Volkswagen Spektrum Program launched in 2018, I think it’s safe to say we all thought it was a great idea. After two years, VW still thinks it’s a great idea and there’s reason to believe it could continue in the next generation of Golf R.

“We’d like it to [continue],” said Hein Schafer, VW USA’s head of product marketing and strategy. “It’s been well spoken of and it was quite successful.”

Although the program isn’t confirmed yet, Schafer told us he’s had customers ask him personally to continue the program into the 8th generation of the Golf. Naturally, there are some considerations, though.

“It’s a hell of a mission for the Wolfsburg plant,” Schafer told us at the Chicago Auto Show. “But I think it was so successful and so well published, I’m sure that they might repeat that in the Mk8.”

The Spektrum offered customers the opportunity to pick any one of 40 colors for their Golf R. The paint colors were only all available at the brand’s Wolfsburg plant. Like the Mk7 Golf, the Mk8 Golf R will be built in Wolfsburg, so the program wouldn’t be any harder than it currently is to implement.

Unfortunately, we don’t yet know if the GTI–which will also be imported from Wolfsburg–will also get the Spektrum treatment. Although it may be technically possible, VW might want to keep the (currently) $2,500 option for the more expensive Golf R. 

According to Schafer, the appearances of the two cars are being even more individualized. 

“Physically, the cars do look very different,” he said. “I’ve seen them both in the flesh, so the new Golf R looks super aggressive.”

Whether or not the Mk8 TSI would ever see US showrooms, is still an open question, with VW maintaining the position that it was evaluating the market. The company did reconfirm that the Mk8 would be sold here as a model year 2022, vehicle, echoing previous reports from Canada.