VIDEO | New VW Golf GTI breaks Nürburgring record

Volkswagen proved its new Golf GTI Clubsport S the most powerful Golf to date by breaking the lap record for front-wheel-drive cars on the Nürburgring Nordschleife.

This exclusive GTI two-seater with a 310 PS engine and newly configured chassis completed a lap of the infamous German circuit in 07:49:21 - beating the reigning hot hatch Nürburgring champ, Honda’s Civic Type R's time of 7:50.63.

The Golf GTI Clubsport S can hit 62mph in just 5.8 seconds thanks to its 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine, which can produce 306bhp.

The new Golf, which has a top speed of 165mph, is also said to be lighter than previous versions of the car after its weight was cut by around 70kg.

In a tribute to the racetrack where the car was partly developed, the motor has a special Nurburgring mode that enables dynamic chassis control.

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Those looking to snap up a new GTI Clubsport S, which is expected to cost in the region of £32,000, will have to move quickly as only 400 will be made.

Here is a summary clip of the lap with commentary from the driver and below that is the full lap with thrilling dash cam-view footage.

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Why is the Nürburgring one of the most demanding tracks to drive in the world?

Most racetracks in the world have hardly any major bumps or height differences. Not so on the Nordschleife of the Nürburgring, where there are plenty of both, and innumerable curves on top of that.

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The result of this is a unique combination of sections with lateral dynamics and vertical dynamics. So a car tuned to drive on the Nürburgring needs, on the one hand, to be able to take bends at high speed, while at the same time being able to cope with extreme bumps and height differences.

In other words: if a car is fine-tuned for driving on normal racetracks, then the chassis is normally made pretty hard, but this isn't helpful on the Nordschleife.

Rather, the suspension needs to absorb the bumps so that the wheels are guided perfectly ahead on the track, meaning that the car needs to be fairly soft vertically, but at the same time stiff when it comes to lateral dynamics.

So, when designing the new GTI Clubsport S to challenge for the track's record the Volkswagen engineers managed to take into account when fine tuning the spring/damper tuning – in particular when it came to the damper tuning of the dynamic chassis control DCC.

The system makes it possible to regulate the damping optimally in response to driving conditions, and it is this regulation that has been specifically fine-tuned for the Nordschleife in the Golf GTI Clubsport S Individual driving profile.