The latest Mk7 Volkswagen Golf is irritatingly good in all key areas. In fact, it may be the only car you will ever need
But is it the only car you will ever want?
The handling is very good, but the most ‘fun’ driving is the Ford Focus. If it’s style you’re after, look no further than the Alfa Romeo Guilietta. The 7th iteration of the Golf follows the germanic evolutionary process to a tee and remains instantly recognizable, but a little dull when compared to its sharpest rivals. Mazda 3 and SEAT Leon.
So what has it got going for it? Are you sitting comfortably? (You will be in VW’s Golf). This could take some time. VW’s Golf has raised the quality bar so high that other manufacturers will be quaking in their boots. It can put many cars in the class above to shame. The mid–range SE model is particularly well equipped, with automatic headlights, rain sensing wipers and lovely comfort seats which have won an award for being kind to your back. In addition to the usual airbags and anti-skid control, the SE model also gets VW’s city emergency braking system. At low speeds it will detect an obstacle and automatically apply the brakes to avoid an accident. At high speeds it has an automatic distance control that will apply the brakes to stop you getting dangerously close to the car in front. It is a very safe car. It is very comfortable to travel in and the ride is better than many luxury cars. The soundproofing is superb and the engines are quiet. It would be easy to mistake the 2.0 TDi for a petrol engine, as it is so quiet and quick. Luckily it has a fail- safe fuel-filling device. According to VW the 2.0 TDi can do almost 69mpg, thanks in part to a massive 100kg weight saving over the old model. This, in turn, improves handling and agility and makes it the most fun to drive Golf yet.
This improvement in handling has not been to the detriment of every day practicality as the Golf is as easy to live with as ever. Great all round visibility, a slick gear change and speed sensitive power steering takes the strain out of slow speed manoeuvres. There are many cubby, holes and storage spaces. Rear space is very good for legroom and headroom, only impeded by a central transmission tunnel that is only utilised by the four-wheel drive derivatives.
It’s not perfect…but it’s pretty close!
High quality interior, efficient diesel and petrol engines, very refined