Advice for buyers
What should I look for in a used Volkswagen Golf R hatchback?
Although the Golf R’s a hoot on open roads, it will of course have been subjected to the ravages of supermarket car parks and school runs, so check the extremities of the car for any scuffs or dents. Look at those handsome alloy wheels for any kerb damage – they are susceptible to scraps and repair can be expensive.
VW had largely sorted out the most expensive of its DSG automatic gearbox problems before this generation of Golf was launched, but there are still some early cars for which problems have been reported, so make sure the gearbox changes smoothly and there are no signs of temperamental behaviour. Timing chains fitted to petrol engines have been known to snap prematurely; this can cause significant engine damage but is often mitigated by having the car serviced on time. This means a full service history is critical. These models can also suffer from high oil consumption, so it’s important to keep checking the oil level, even between services. If the level gets too low, it can cause damage to the engine or timing chain.