Asian Journal Auto review

2017 VOLKSWAGEN GOLFThe Volkswagen Golf has always been one of my favourite cars and for good reason: It has a great heritage, decent build quality, fine engineering and has always been a practical, fun to drive car. It is also available in a number of permutations to suit different buyers and driver needs. The fast and exciting GTI and Golf R models offer superb performance, the cabriolet offers open top thrills; and of course the five-door and three-door model hatchbacks offer great flexibility. There is even a wagon version of the Golf. Not forgetting there is a choice of gas engines and the excellent TDI diesel models that offers amazing fuel economy.

My tester for the week was the 2017 Golf five-door, 1.8 Comfortline in a Tungsten silver metallic colour. The 2017 Golf is powered by a 1.8 TSI engine that produces 170 hp and 184 lb/ft of torque. A six-speed Tiptronic transmission drives the front wheels.

The Comfortline arrived with the following equipment: 16 inch Toronto alloy wheels, cruise control, heated front eight-way adjustable seats, dual-zone climate controls, keyless entry with push-button start and leather-wrapped steering wheel.  Entertainment consisted of App Connect smartphone integration, (Android, Apple, CarPlaym Mirrorlink connectivity) Climatronic dual zone climate control. KESSY keyless access with push –button start and Sirius XM satellite radio. The Golf also features a 6.5-inch touchscreen infotainment centre with proximity sensor and  Shetland leatherette seats. Our mid- range Comfortline included a $1,310 convenience package which included blind spot detection with rear traffic alert and a panoramic sunroof.

Inside, the 2017 Golf Comfortline features a very neat, logically designed dash with clear gauges and ergonomic controls. Standard equipment in our Comfortline composed all the usual power conveniences — power windows with one-touch up/down from all window switches, power door locks, dual-zone air conditioning, cruise control, multi-function steering wheel, heated front seats other comforts. Entertainment is good with a smart looking infotainment system. The smart proximity sensor, on the display screen activates, additional information onto the screen as you move you hand towards it. A very cool feature. The blind spot detection is also very handy with Golfs wide C pillars. If a vehicle comes into the blindspot range, two small lights illuminate on both driver and passenger sideview mirrors as a warning. A five-speed manual transmission is standard issue, but our Comfortline came with the six-speed Tiptronic, a $1,400 upgrade. The cabin as always, due to the boxy tall shape offers great interior room.  And there is plenty of legroom and headroom up front and in the rear. At the rear- the 60/40-split backrest can be folded to provide an almost flat cargo area. With the rear seats folded, The 2017 Golf Comfortline features 645 litres of cargo space, 1,4092 with the rear seats down.

On the road, the Golfs strut-type front suspension, and multi-link arrangement with coil springs, dampers and an anti-roll bar provide a typical firm, stable performance engineered ride. It’s a characteristic I love so much about every Golf generation – the wonderful solidity and confidence the stiff chassis brings about. The Golfs electric power-assisted steering is also very well calibrated with sharp reflexes on the bends and a fine, dead on center feel stability at high speed.  Things are also helped by the smooth and powerful turbocharged and direct-injection 1.8-litre four-cylinder TSI with its 170 horsepower at 3,500 rpm and 199 lb.-ft. of torque. It’s a bulletproof engine with bags of torque in the mid and low end. Acceleration is good with a nice linear progressive feel. Fuel economy for the Golf is rated at 9.4/6.4L/100km (city/hwy).

In short nothing to complain about. A wonderfully adept and solidly built and engineered family car that will never let you down. Highly recommended.

 Price as tested $26,655 including options. Plus Freight, PDI and Federal AC tax