The eighth-generation Volkswagen GTI is on the way and the more-powerful fifth-generation Golf R is coming with it.

Set to debut in late 2021 as a 2022 model, just like the GTI, the new Golf R promises more power, more technology, and more performance.

The performance side of the equation is already proven as racer and VW development driver Benjamin Leuchter set a 7:51 lap time at the Nurburgring Nordschiefe in the next-generation Golf R, a full 19 seconds quicker than the seventh-generation model.

Like the outgoing Golf R, the EA888 2.0-liter turbo-4 powers the 2022 model, but now it makes 315 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque, up from 288 hp and 280 lb-ft of torque. Volkswagen says the turbo-4 launches the new Golf R from 0-62 mph in 4.7 seconds when teamed with the 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. Times for the 0-60 mph run and the Golf R with the 6-speed manual transmission are not yet available.

2022 Volkswagen Golf R

2022 Volkswagen Golf R

The Golf R rides the same MQB platform as the GTI and the current car, but it features several hardware and software upgrades aimed at performance. Its all-wheel-drive system gets a new rear-wheel-drive unit with two clutches that can vector all of the available rear-wheel torque to the outside wheel in a turn. Up to half the power can go to the rear.

A MacPherson strut front suspension returns, but now it's mounted to a 6.6-pound lighter aluminum front subframe and the tires have increased negative camber at 1.2 degrees. The new adaptive dampers have a greater range between their soft and firm settings. The electric-assist power steering keeps the same 14:1 ratio, but it now requires just 2.1 rotations lock to lock and is tuned for more direct response and increased comfort (i.e. it feels lighter). VW also makes the front and rear stabilizer bars 10% stiffer, revises the wheel mounts and control arm mounts, and installs new bushings.

2022 Volkswagen Golf R

2022 Volkswagen Golf R

The new Golf R rolls on 235/35R19 summer performance tires (Bridgestone Potenza S005, Goodyear Eagle F1 Super Sport, or Hankook Ventus S1 evo3) with 8-inch wide wheels. The brakes feature 14.1-inch cross-drilled rotors at all four corners with two-piston front calipers and single-piston rears, all four calipers painted blue. Volkswagen says a larger master cylinder allows for finer braking performance, and the Golf R stops quicker than the outgoing version despite being up to 130 pounds heavier.

The 2022 Golf R will come with four main driving modes, plus two sub-modes, all accessed by pressing the blue R button on the steering wheel. The main modes are Comfort, Sport (the default mode), Race, and configurable Individual. Individual mode allows drivers to choose settings more comfortable than the standard Comfort settings and more taut than the standard Race settings. A Special mode uses the track map of the Nurburgring as its icon, and is meant for track duty. It's specifically tuned to the Nurburgring and features softer suspension settings than Race to help keep the tires in contact with the pavement. A new Drift mode needs no explanation.

A new Vehicle Dynamics Manager is a brain that ties all the systems together to optimize each for best performance based on the mode.

Tweaks to the aerodynamics enabled by the new design give the car less lift front and rear and a slight increase in drag.

The looks are similar to those of the GTI, but the 2022 model has larger air intakes, an R logo, and a blue crossbar that lights up as an LED strip up front (versus the red treatment on the GTI). The car sits 0.8 inch lower than the base Golf, and the rear has twin chromed tailpipes, a diffuser, and a two-piece spoiler. The 2022 model is only a four-door, like all eighth-generation Golfs. It will be offered in three colors: Lapiz Blue Metallic, Pure White, and Deep Black Pearl Effect.

2022 Volkswagen Golf R

2022 Volkswagen Golf R

2022 Volkswagen Golf R

2022 Volkswagen Golf R

2022 Volkswagen Golf R

2022 Volkswagen Golf R

Inside, VW gives the Golf R the same type of digital instrument cluster as the GTI and a 10.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system, both with unique R-specific views. Screens show such information as real-time horsepower and torque, torque distribution, boost pressure, a G meter, and operating temps for the transmission, oil, and coolant. Blue highlights match the exterior, and the steering wheel is new with touch controls with haptic feedback. The sport seats are upholstered in nappa leather with carbon-look elements and blue trim in the side sections. The leather-wrapped steering wheel is heated, and the interior gets carbon-look trim and ambient lighting.

Volkswagen didn't say how much the 2022 Golf R will cost, but said the U.S. will get the fully loaded model and pricing will mostly stay in line with the outgoing model but with an increase for the extra content.