One of the most iconic cars ever produced by Volkswagen is celebrating 40 years of existence in 2016. The 2016 Goodwood Festival of Speed will witness the celebration of 40 years since the first Volkswagagen Golf GTI was launched.

The Golf GTI went on sale in the United Kingdom in 1976 and since then the car has achieved iconic status. Now into its seventh generation, the model’s milestone birthday is being celebrated with the special edition Golf GTI Clubsport S. The car has 310 hp and recently took the lap record for front-wheel drive production cars at the Nürburgring Nordschleife circuit in Germany.

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The Clubsport S has a special Nürburgring setting, which fine-tunes the adaptive chassis control, engine, steering and sound to suit the famous road circuit.  The car also has enlarged tailpipes and semi-slick tyres for stronger grip.  Limited to just 400 examples, 150 of those will be sold in the UK.

Both the Clubsport S and the Mk1, the bookends of the Golf GTI story, will be driven up the world famous Goodwood hill by two-time Le Mans 24 Hours winner Hans-Joachim Stuck. The famous German pilot will be keen to contrast the impact that 40 years of technological advancement has had on the Golf GTI.

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Continuing the 40 years of Golf GTI celebrations, the Golf GTI Mk3 will also be on display, enabling fans of the car to see how the GTI has developed over the years. The possible future of the Golf GTI is hinted at with the Golf GTE Sport concept car, which is powered by an advanced plug-in hybrid system. The car was originally unveiled last year at the Lake Wörthersee Golf GTI event in Austria in front of 200,000 fans.