Volkswagen Intervenes to Preserve Europe’s Famous Worthersee Automobile Gathering

Volkswagen Intervenes to Preserve Europe's Famous Worthersee Automobile Gathering

If you enjoy the VW GTI, you’ll enjoy Wörthersee, where up to 200,000 enthusiasts have flocked since the 1980s to admire GTIs and other outstanding automobiles.

  • The annual Wörthersee GTI Treffen, which has been going on since 1982, has drawn up to 200,000 people at its busiest.
  • Early this year, the Wörth municipality in Austria, where the event had taken place, announced that it would end permanently.
  • Since 2000, VW has been a formal sponsor of the Treffen, and it has now committed to upholding the custom at its Wolfsburg corporate headquarters.

If you love the Volkswagen GTI in any of its generations, Germany is your destination. Any enthusiast of VW hot hatches should put a trip to the nearly legendary GTI Treffen, held on the shores of Lake Wörth since 1982, on their bucket list. At its height, this area was flooded with hundreds of thousands of GTI and Golf R enthusiasts who took pictures of outrageously customized Golfs and gorged themselves on Volkswagen currywurst (VW part number 199398500A). But as might be expected, the locals are getting a little tired of the show.

The local government firmly cut the plug on the largest GTI festival in the world while making a statement that acknowledged the economic prosperity that previous Treffens had brought to the area. Citing the effects of climate change and a need to consider sustainability, an official statement concluded, “In the upcoming years, Maria Wörth will no longer host any traditional significant auto events.”

Clearly, this was a setback for many VeeDub enthusiasts as well as for Volkswagen. The Treffen started as a grassroots festival, but VW had long supported its fans. It debuted

Wörthersee-specific concept cars like the GTI Roadster Vision Gran Turismo, a sleek roofless two-seater built to celebrate 15 years of the Gran Turismo racing games. The GTI W12-650, with its 12-cylinder engine mounted amidships and a top speed of 201 mph, is another example of insane automobile design.

However, Wörthersee will soon regain its former allure as a picturesque resort in the Bavarian Lake District.

Happily, Volkswagen swiftly announced that the Treffen would go on as planned, albeit in Wolfsburg. The event will be held next year, and VW plans to call the theme “Coming Home.” Volkswagen has promised some surprises and special highlights for devoted GTI fans.

In all reality, it’s the Treffen’s best outcome. It had essentially outgrown its previous location due to the large crowds. It seems more appropriate to move the festival right to Wolfsburg, and the year’s break gives Volkswagen more time to prepare.

The Golf R and GTI still both garner near-perfect scores for their blend of practicality and performance, and their fan base remains huge. 2024 is the year to make your own journey to the Treffen if you’ve been putting it off.


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