Every year at Wrthersee in Austria there's a Volkswagen festival and, every year, Volkswagen brings along something special for the occasion. This year they've gone overboard and brought a car that doesn't really exist...
The Vision GTI is part of a collaboration between the world's car manufacturers and Sony's triple-A Playstation racing game title Gran Turismo. The Vision GT project aims to bring the best concept cars to GT6 - the current title - as part of what series creator Kazunori Yamauchi refers to as the edge effect, where real and virtual butt up against one another.
Gamers have already seen cars from Mercedes-Benz and BMW, and this slightly shortened, speedster-styled Golf is Volkswagen's offering, coming to the consoles during June. Originally intended as a virtual car only, designed by Volkswagen's Malte Hammerbeck, Domen Rucigaj and Guillermo Mignot as part of an in-house competition, VW chose to make a 'real' version of the car for the Wrthersee show.
If you happen to have a copy of Gran Turismo 6 when the Vision GTI arrives next month, you can look forward to a 500hp, 4WD treat. Powered by a 3.0 V6 biturbo TSI engine and marshalled through the VW 4MOTION-branded Haldex 4WD system, the virtual car will barrel up to 60mph in less than 4s and on to 190mph - so it's somewhat fortunate your avatar wears a helmet during gameplay. Dragging the 1,420kg car to a halt is a huge set of ceramic brakes, nestling behind the bespoke 20 inch wheels.
Though a unique concept, the Golf GTI heritage is self-evident throughout the design, with perhaps the clearest indicator being the red style line at the front of the car - a feature with origins in the original Mk1 Golf nearly 40 years since - bifurcating the light units.
Of course the Vision GTI won't be available to buy but if you want to know more about the Golf then check out our VW Golf Mk7 review section, with photos, videos, stats and a full buying guide.