Then came our long awaited test of the new Volkswagen Golf Cabriolet, and we were surprised to find out that it has been 9 years since a new Golf Cabriolet has been released.
We recently reviewed the Volkswagen EOS, a four seater hard top convertible based on the Passat platform. This was billed by some as the replacement for the Golf Cabriolet of old and although we thoroughly enjoyed our time with the EOS ultimately we found it a little sedate, perhaps more suited to the mature or family buyer with older children.
Then came our long awaited test of the new Volkswagen Golf Cabriolet, and we were surprised to find out that it has been 9 years since a new Golf Cabriolet has been released. The 2011 Golf Cabriolet is a four seater, soft top convertible, based on the new Golf platform. It is around 20 cm shorter than the Eos, measuring 4,246 mm in length, 1,423 mm in height and 1,782 mm wide.
The new Golf Cabriolet will be available with a choice of three engines: a 1.2-litre TSI 105 PS, 1.4-litre TSI 160 PS and a 1.6-litre TDI 105 PS. A further petrol and two diesel engines will be offered later in the year. DSG automatic transmission will be offered while BlueMotion Technology modifications will be applied to the diesel engines to ensure high efficiency and low emissions.
Three trim levels will be offered - S, SE and GT - and all will have a high level of standard specification, featuring 16-inch alloy wheels, and Bluetooth among other items. Moving up to SE, features such as 2Zone climate control, cruise control, parking sensors and automatic head lights are added, whilst the top of the range, GT adds a number of new highlights including sports suspension, Alcantara upholstery and 18-inch alloy wheels.
The new model will be built at Volkswagen Osnabruck (formerly the Karmann Company) in Germany. UK order books opened on the 1st July 2011, with the first customer deliveries taking place in September 2011.
Prices start at £20,720 and rise to £26,595.
We tested the 1.4 TSI GT model with a 7 Speed DSG gearbox and also the 6 Speed Manual version.
We tested the 1.4 litre petrol powered VW Golf Cabriolet equipped with the automatic 7 Speed DSG gearbox which costs £1300 more than the 6 Speed Manual version, that we also drove.
The 1.4-litre TSI unit uses supercharging and a turbo charger to produce 160 PS at 5,800 and 240 Nm (177 lbs ft) of torque from 1,500 to 4,000 rpm. This enables the 1.4 TSI to sprint from 0-62 mph in 8.4 seconds and continue on to a top speed of 134 mph. According to Volkswagen the performance figures are identical for both the DSG and manual.
We know some people might not expect much from a 1.4 litre petrol engine but it is quite a surprising engine as the acceleration is brisk and rewarding.
On the road it was very difficult to choose between the two transmission options, although the DSG (Direct Shift Gearbox) is excellent, overall the manual car felt better to drive but we could not put our finger on why. But when weighing up our driving style and use of the vehicle we would choose the DSG version, it is a better all round option with little compromise.
Volkswagen quote a combined fuel economy figure of 44.1 mpg for the 6-speed manual (44.8 mpg for the DSG) while CO2 emissions are 150 g/km (148 g/km for the DSG).On our mixed test route we were seeing nearer to 30 mpg but the car had hardly been run in and we tended to have a rather heavy right foot.
Volkswagen Golf Road Test Data
|Model Reviewed||Volkswagen Golf Cabriolet 1.4 TSI GT|
|Performance (manufacturers data)|
|0 - 62 mph||8.4 seconds|
|Top Speed||134 mph|
|Fuel Type||Unleaded Petrol|
|CO2 Emissions (NEDC Figures)||g/km|
|Economy (NEDC Figures)|
|Extra Urban||52.3 mpg|
|Euro NCAP Rating||5 Stars|
|Warranty||3 years / 60,000 miles|
|Price (when tested on the 09/09/11)||£25,295|