2017 Volkswagen Golf GTI vs 2017 Ford Focus ST

It seems competition is heating up for the hot hatch segment, but is Volkswagen feeling the pressure? A comparison of the 2017 Volkswagen Golf GTI vs 2017 Ford Focus ST shows that both models are attractive and fun options for those seeking a practical, but peppy, option. The question is, which one will you enjoy more? There’s no denying that the Ford Focus ST delivers just a touch more power, but with the GTI now offering standard performance features starting at the Sport trim, things are closer.

The Focus ST delivers up 252 horsepower and 270 pound-feet of torque, compared to the 210 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque offered from the Golf GTI. From this alone, you’re likely leaning toward Ford, but there’s more to consider. When you upgrade to any GTI trim but the S, you get a 10 horsepower boost, which makes things just a touch more competitive. You also receive larger vented disc brakes and the VAQ front limited-slip differential, all working to improve performance.

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2017 Volkswagen Golf GTI vs 2017 Ford Focus ST
24 city/34 hwy MPG 22 city/32 hwy
22.8 cu. ft. Cargo Space 19.9 cu. ft.
93.5 cu. ft. Passenger Volume 90 cu. ft.
5.8 Seconds Car and Driver 0-60 Speed Test 6.3 Seconds

Why drivers choose the 2017 VW Golf GTI

We know what you’re thinking: The Ford Focus offers more horsepower and torque. Case closed. Yet, consistent testing shows that it accelerates more slowly than the Golf GTI. Turns out, all the performance features that are added on, mixed with the available six-speed DSG transmission, allow drivers to cruise around the course more quickly with the GTI. According to Car and Driver, you can expect a 0-60 time of 5.8 seconds in the Golf GTI, while the Ford Focus ST takes 6.3 seconds to reach the same speed. So when it comes to fun, the GTI still holds the crown.

Once you move away from the obvious benefit of a sportier model, you find yourself debating the more practical features. If you’re hoping for a daily driver that is fun, but still practical, you’ll almost definitely opt for the 2017 Volkswagen Golf GTI. One downside the Focus ST has? That extra power fails to pump up the acceleration, but it succeeds at draining some of the fuel economy. Not noticeably when gas prices are low, but when they jump up you’ll be feeling it.

Cargo and interior space are also both more impressive in the 2017 Volkswagen Golf GTI, making it a much more well-rounded car. We won’t dive into features, as it simply wouldn’t be fair. The Focus ST has a variety of packages, but the Golf GTI is considered its own model and therefore has more trim options. The Focus ST is just one trim within the Focus lineup.

Still not sure if you’ll fall in love with the 2017 Volkswagen Golf GTI? Stop by New Century Volkswagen to take the model for a test drive and find out for yourself.

2017 Volkswagen Golf GTI Headlights
2017 Volkswagen Golf GTI Gauge Cluster
2017 Volkswagen Golf GTI Wheels with Red Brake Calipers
2017 Volkswagen Golf GTI Interior and Driver's seat

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