The new Volkswagen Golf, which went on sale on 6th January 2009, has won the title 'Best Small Family Car' in the 2009 What Car? awards for the third year, running.
The new Volkswagen Golf, which went on sale on 6th January 2009, has won the title 'Best Small Family Car' in the 2009 What Car? awards for the third year, running. This comes on top of being awarded a five-star rating by Euro NCAP, achieving 36 out of a possible 37 points for occupant protection. In the area of child safety the new Volkswagen Golf scored four stars and three stars for pedestrian safety.
Prices range from £12,875 to £20,537, which is cheaper than the Ford Focus range and to some degree, the Vauxhall Astra, both of which a major competitors. Moreover, the new Volkswagen Golf is said to be the safest, most technically advanced and most dynamic Golf yet, which is what we have all come to expect. Unfortunately, the snow curtailed any real exploration of the dynamics but what I did discover is that the Volkswagen Golf is fairly flat on fast bends and will happily cope with swift changes of direction.
The test car was in GT trim with the 2.0-litre TDI CR engine, priced at £18,648. It is one of three trims currently available - the GTI arrives later in 2009 - the other two trim levels are are S and SE.
The 2.0-litre engine is the most powerful of those on offer and is available with two outputs of 110 PS and 140 PS. We tested the higher output unit, which produces the maximum power at 4,200 rpm and 320 Nm of torque between 1,750 and 2,500 rpm, making it very flexible with plenty of oomph available in all of the six gears.
It takes 9.3 seconds to complete the 0-62 mph dash and the top speed is 130 mph. But what is impressive is how mean it is with fuel. Diesel engines are expected to be frugal but improved engine efficiency allows a return of 44.1 mpg on the urban cycle, 70.6 mpg for the extra-urban and 57.6mpg for the combined, with 129 g/km CO2 escaping from the tailpipes.
There will be a 1.6 TDI unit available later in the year, along with a further increase in power for the 2.0-TDI engine, to 170 PS. Petrol engines are listed as the entry-level 1.4 (80PS), a 1.6 (102PS) and a 1.4 TSI, which is turbocharged and produces 122PS. These are variously combined with a range of 5- and 6-speed manual gearboxes or the excellent, 6- and 7-speed DSG, dual-clutch transmissions.
Volkswagen Golf Road Test Data
|Model Reviewed||Volkswagen Golf GT|
|Colour||Reflex Silver Metallic|
|Performance (manufacturers data)|
|0 - 62 mph||9.3 Seconds|
|Top Speed||130 mph|
|CO2 Emissions (NEDC Figures)||g/km|
|Economy (NEDC Figures)|
|Extra Urban||70.6 mpg|
|Euro NCAP Rating||5|
|Warranty||3 Years / 60,000 Miles|
|Price (when tested on the 19/02/09)||£ 17,498|