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Few automakers do daily-driver hot hatchbacks, as well as Volkswagen does. VW effectively invented the category more than four decades ago with the MK1 Golf GTI. Now, with the latest GTI and Golf R, the German automaker wants to remind enthusiasts that they’re indeed the masters of the hot hatch space.

The Golf R was initially not available in the United States, but that changed in 2003 when the R32 came along. Fast forward to today and we essentially have what Volkswagen touts as the fastest and most highly performance-oriented Golf they’ve ever made.

The Golf R took a hiatus from 2020 to 2021. Well, it’s now back for the 2022 model year. With over 300 horsepower, standard all-wheel drive, and a choice of either a manual or automatic transmission, find out if the eight-generation Volkswagen Golf R is the holy grail of the breed when it comes to daily driving, all-weather hot hatches.