9th April 2017

Reviews: VW Golf gets refreshed for 2017 – Easy like Sunday morning

Last Word First

Rolling on our roads since 1974, VW’s Golf needs no introduction. Certainty, taken as read, premium, German build, the list of adjectives could be never-ending. Suffice it to say, the Golf was, is and will always be, desirable.

Now in its seventh incarnation, the 2017 Golf is a magnet for driveways nationwide, its square profile the answer to the family, commuter, renter and business traveller alike. For 2017 it got the decorators in, delivering multiple subtle changes, a new 1.0 litre, 3-cyclinder turbo-petrol, with either 85 or 110bhp, two diesel 1.6 and 2.0litre variants, a roomy estate, the ubiquitous GTi, the horizon-eating Golf R, all with a street look that is pure Golf – you know you’d have one!

Volkswagen’s staggered APR being 5.9% on Trendline, 3.9% on Comfortline and 1.9% on Highline, GTI, GTD and R models, makes it attractively easy and cost effective for customers to choose a higher-spec Golf model than they might originally have in mind.

The all-new 8th generation Golf is due in late 2017, until then this latest updated Golf brings all manner of safety and comfort features, all of which should easily consolidate VW’s top selling car on the test drive list of anyone buying in this segment. Prices start at €21,670 for the Trendline 1.0 litre, 3-door TSi.

What it is

Make: VW, Model, Golf, Format: three & five-door hatchback, Engine: 3-cyclinder, turbo-petrol, Power: 85bhp & 110bhp, Transmission: 6-speed manual, CO2 rating: 108g/km, Road Tax Band: A3, Annual Road Tax: €190,

Other engines include:

  • 0litre TSi, 110bhp
  • 4litre TSi 150bhp
  • 6litre TDi 115bhp
  • 0litre TDi 150bhp
  • GTD 2.0TDi 184bhp
  • GTi 2.0litre TSi 230bhp
  • Golf R 2.0TSi 310bhp

Some of the competition:

Ford Focus, Opel Astra, Toyota Corolla, Hyundai i30, Peugeot 308, KIA cee’d, Citroen C4, Renault Megane, Mazda 3, Honda Civic, SEAT Leon, Skoda Octavia

Outside View

It unmistakably a Golf, no matter how they tweak it, the profile is burnt into our road recognition. The 2017 model sits on their much-shared MQB platform, this range getting new bumpers, very nice LED Daytime Running Lights, the option of LED headlights, otherwise they’re halogen, whilst the rear gets LED lights, the whole package giving the face-lifted Golf that aura of dependability that has lured some 33 million off the production lines over the past forty-three years.

Inside Story

It will come as no surprise that the 2017 Golf is hard to fault the second you open its doors. It doesn’t have the curves and swishes of others, sticking with relatively flat surfaces and straight-line configuration.

With many Golf buyers bypassing the introductory Trendline model, the Comfortline and the Highline in particular come with a host of active, passive and comfort systems, including as standard on all Highline and Performance Golfs, the new Discover Navigation Pro radio-navigation and online system featuring gesture control accessed via a 9.2-inch screen. Customers can also avail of an extended range of online services and apps.

Volkswagen is also offering customers a saving of up to €1,100 via their Innovation Packs, which for €399 on the Trendline models offers 15” Lyons Alloy Wheels, Front Fog Lights and Cruise Control – a saving of €725.

Those choosing the €399 Innovation Pack on the Comfortline get Park Distance Control, High Beam “Light Assist”, a Light & Vision Package and Folding Mirrors – a saving of €880.

Going to the Highline, GTI, GTD and R models, and spending €599 on the Innovation Pack adorns your new Golf with Discover Media, High Beam “Light Assist”, Rear-View Camera and the Winter Pack with heated seats - a saving of €1,100. There is also a Reduced Price Service Offer and Half Price R-Line Exterior Offer on the 2017 Golf – details from www.volkswagen.ie

Road Story

Anyone who has not driven the latest generation of one-litre, 3-cylinder turbo-petrol engines needs to get into this 2017 Golf, among others. With nearly all manufacturers producing their own version, the VW unit is very impressive in the Golf. Quiet, smooth, with its distinctive engine tone, this little triple is well up for most you ask of it.

Obviously the 110bhp variant is the one I would opt for, the extra bit of push always good to have in the road-locker. Internal space is good for most and the drive is assured and satisfying.

The launch allowed only short drives, but was enough to whet the appetite and consolidate the Golf’s reputation. The 2017 GTi is very deserving of the badge, from its tartan seats, subtle badging and wonderful engine, it is a car to live with for decades.

More Reviews