Getting one’s trotters on a 2012 VW Golf R is going to take a somewhat substantial piggy bank. The people’s car company has recently announced pricing: from $34,760 for the three-door version to $36,860 for the five-door. The latter does get a sunroof, navigation, keyless entry and an upgraded stereo as standard, if that’s any consolation. And don’t bother thinking about the extra cost of an automatic transmission. A six-speed manual is the only gear-changing game in town. At least the R will be the most powerful production Golf when it goes on sale early in 2012, since it sports 256 hp and 243 lb-ft of torque squeezing through its all-wheel-drive system.

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