C/D Overall Rating:
A frequent 10Best honoree, it’s no secret that the Volkswagen Golf is one of our favorite cars, thanks to its exceptional driving dynamics and attainable price tag. Enthusiasts will appreciate the nimble chassis and accurate handling, but even the hoi polloi can get behind the Golf’s sensible package. Available exclusively as a hatchback, this tall-roofed compact is among the most practical options in the class. Decades after it first graced these shores, the Golf continues to be one of the most well-rounded, high-value cars on the market.
What’s New for 2017?
Changes to the Golf for 2017 are limited to the addition of the new Wolfsburg trim, which sits above the base S trim level and adds active safety technology and a few convenience items.
We expect Volkswagen to deliver a face-lifted Golf to the United States in fall 2017 and an all-new model by 2020.
Trims and Options We’d Choose
The Golf starts at $20,715, and for buyers who are looking to keep the impact on their bank account minimal, the base Golf is a sufficient package. We like the engagement of the Golf’s five-speed manual, but we also enjoy the quick-shifting, sure-footed six-speed automatic. Both pair exclusively to an eager 170-hp turbocharged 1.8-liter four-cylinder. The Wolfsburg trim carries significantly more content for a $1700 premium, and it’s worth the upgrade if you can swing it. The extra scratch will net drivers several enhancements, including:
• Leatherette seating surfaces with heated front seats
• Forward-collision warning with automated emergency braking
• Blind-spot monitoring
• Rear cross-traffic alert
The final tally for a manual Golf Wolfsburg is $22,415.