Volkswagen Golf

Volkswagen Golf review

Manufacturer price from:£18,765
What Car? Target Price:£17,286
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‘Das Auto’ - or ‘the car’ to us Brits - used to be Volkswagen’s strapline and, for many, the Golf really is das auto of choice. Since the original was launched in 1974, more than 33 million have been sold – this works out to about one every 40 seconds.

This seventh-generation model popped up in 2012 and was updated in 2017 with some mild styling tweaks, new engines, a new infotainment system and, unusually for a revised model, a price cut.

It’s definitely not the cheapest family car you can buy, but the Golf is a superb all-rounder that does everything most households will ever need. And with strong resale values and a range of fuel-efficient turbocharged engines, it should cost you surprisingly little to run over three years.

It should be noted that, as good as the latest Golf is, it doesn't dominate its class in the way some previous versions did, but that's down to the competition upping its game rather than Volkswagen's standards slipping.

These days, the onslaught comes from all sides: the likes of the Skoda Octavia and Vauxhall Astra both offer more space for a lower price, while premium-badged rivals such as the Audi A3 and BMW 1 Series have plusher interiors and better infotainment systems.

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Are any of these alternatives better all-rounders than the Golf, though? And in which spec does VW's best-selling car make most sense? Read on over the next few pages to find out.

And if you do want to buy a Golf, check out our New Car Buying pages here.

 

open the gallery18 Images
Engines
There are 10 engines available for the Golf hatchback. Click to see details.See all versions
1.0 TI S
The range kicks off with an 84bhp 1.0-litre three-cylinder TSI petrol engine. But with...View engine
Fuel Petrol
GearboxManual
0-62 MPH11.9 secs
MPG58.9-58.9
What Car? Target Price from
£17,286
Average Saving £1,479
View Engine
1.0 TSI 115
The 113bhp 1.0 is actually one of our favourites. Thanks to a turbocharger, acceleratio...View engine
Fuel Petrol
GearboxSemi-auto, Manual
0-62 MPH9.8 secs
MPG58.9-60.1
What Car? Target Price from
£18,102
Average Saving £1,553
View Engine
1.6 TDI
This diesel engine has 113bhp and comes with a five-speed manual gearbox or an optional...View engine
Fuel Diesel
GearboxManual, Semi-auto
0-62 MPH10.2 secs
MPG67.3-70.6
What Car? Target Price from
£19,237
Average Saving £1,653
View Engine
1.5 TSI EVO 150
Available only in the more expensive GT and R-Line trims, this engine pulls hard from l...View engine
Fuel Petrol
GearboxManual, Semi-auto
0-62 MPH8.3 secs
MPG52.3-55.4
What Car? Target Price from
£19,769
Average Saving £1,701
View Engine
OUR PICK
1.5 TSI EVO 130
For more effortless performance, step up to the four-cylinder petrols, starting with th...View engine
Fuel Petrol
GearboxSemi-auto, Manual
0-62 MPH9.1 secs
MPG55.4-57.6
What Car? Target Price from
£19,875
Average Saving £1,710
View Engine
2.0 TDI
If you want a diesel and can stretch your budget, we’d take this 2.0-litre engine over...View engine
Fuel Diesel
GearboxManual, Semi-auto
0-62 MPH8.6 secs
MPG62.8-65.7
What Car? Target Price from
£23,222
Average Saving £2,008
View Engine
2.0 TDI 184
This most powerful diesel engine is reserved exclusively for the sporty GTD. It deliver...View engine
Fuel Diesel
GearboxManual, Semi-auto
0-62 MPH7.4 secs
MPG60.4-64.2
What Car? Target Price from
£25,255
Average Saving £2,190
View Engine
2.0 TSI 245
Opt for GT or R-line trim and you can have a 148bhp version of the same 1.5-litre petro...View engine
Fuel Petrol
GearboxManual, Semi-auto
0-62 MPH6.2 secs
MPG41.5-44.8
What Car? Target Price from
£28,510
Average Saving £2,455
View Engine
1.4 TSI DSG
Combines a turbocharged 148bhp 1.4-litre petrol engine with an electric motor. The inst...View engine
Fuel Petrol/Plug-In Elec Hybrid
GearboxSemi-auto
0-62 MPH7.6 secs
MPG156.9-166.2
What Car? Target Price from
£29,339
Average Saving £2,156
View Engine
99kW
We have not written anything about this yet...View engine
Fuel Electric
GearboxAuto
0-62 MPH9.6 secs
MPGN-N
What Car? Target Price from
£32,752
Average Saving £488
View Engine