Bigger, faster and more powerful than the car it replaces, the new GTI is available in two engine flavors, both 2-liter turbocharged. Base models get 210 hp, while a performance pack adds another 10 hp. Perhaps more importantly, torque is up in a big way. A six-speed stick shifter is standard and DSG is also available, costing another $1,100. Yours from $25,000 (plus destination), the now-Mexico-made hot hatch faces stiff competition from the Ford Focus ST and Honda Civic ST. But until they too have a billion GoPro cameras stuck onto them, the German remains our favorite.
At the last Chicago Auto Show, Volkswagen announced it would be entering the Red Bull Global Rallycross (GRC) series with Tanner Foust as its star driver, champion in 2011 and 2012. Partnering with Andretti Autosports, the German automaker has put together a hot version of the Beetle coupe that goes from 0 to 60 mph in two seconds.