We have already seen the standard Volkswagen Golf VII and now Volkswagen is further expanding the lineup with the addition of the new generation Golf Variant. The station wagon version is enjoying a great success on the European market so is no wonder why the seventh generation brings significant updates.
When compared to the model it replaces, the new Golf Variant is about 105 kg (232 lbs) lighter, but in the same time it has grown in sizes and offers increased cargo area.
Also, as a first for the station wagon model, the seventh generation Golf Variant is being offered in an extremely fuel-efficient TDI BlueMotion version that delivers a combined fuel consumption of just 3.3 l/100 km (71.3 mpg). All the other engines and transmissions have been carried over from the hatchback version.
Updated 03/05/2013: This review has been updated with the official details, images and specs.
Hit the jump to read more about the seventh generation Golf Variant.
On the exterior the new Golf Variant will be pretty much identical to the hatchback version, except of course its extended rear - a feature required by a station wagon model. On this new version the C-pillar has been transformed into the D-pillar thanks to the addition of a "third" side window. Also, the rear wheel arches have been carried completely over the rear of the vehicle offering the car a more muscular appearance.
Just like in any other station wagon model, the side window is longer and the roof line together with the roof spoiler are slightly rearward-sloping. As an option Volkswagen is also offering an additional roof rail that is further increasing the dynamism of the car.
At the rear the model received two-part tail lights with one half integrated into the boot lid. In the Variant version the license plate is being integrated with the boot lid.
|Wheelbase||2636mm (103.8 inches)|
|Length||4562mm (179.6 inches)|
|Cargo area||1054mm (41.5 inches)|
|Cargo capacity (seats up)||605 liters|
|Cargo capacity (seats down)||1,620 liters|
The interior is once again similar to the hatchback version, except of course it offers increased rear room and more boot volume. With seats up the new Golf Variant is offering a boot volume of 605 liter, but when seats will be down it can be increased to 1,620 liters.
The cargo area measures 1054mm (41.5 inches) long, but it can be expanded to 1831mm (72.1 inches) once the rear seats are folded. The height of the cargo are can also be increased thanks to a two-step roll-up mechanism that can be be stored under the cargo floor when not needed.
Standard features offered by basic version:
- airbags (seven)
- electrically adjustable wing mirrors
- outside temperature display
- chrome rings around the interior vents
- eco-HMI (fuel consumption-related information on the multi-function display / instruments)
- electronic stabilisation programme
- height-adjustable driver’s seat
- electric windows in the front and rear
- rear window wiper with intermittent setting
- air conditioning
- steering column with height and length adjustment
- centre console with storage compartment
- electronic parking brake with auto-hold function
- XDS differential lock
- tyre pressure monitoring indicator
- asymmetrically split and folding rear seat backrests, with remote unlocking
- electro-mechanical power-assist steering
- dust and pollen filter
- daytime running lights
- touchscreen with 5-inch TFT display
- green-tinted insulating glass
- central locking with wireless remote control
Under the hood the new Golf Variant will keep the same engine lineup offered by the hatchback version. There will be petrol engines with power ranging from 85 to 140 horsepower and diesel engiens ranging from 105 to 150 horsepower.
For the first time in its history, the new Golf Variant is being offered in a fuel-efficient TDI BlueMotion variant that features a 110 horsepower diesel engine combined with a 6-speed gearbox and delivers an amazing fuel economy of just 3,3 liters/100 km (71.3 mpg).
Prices for the new Volkswagen Golf Variant will be announced closer to its market launch.
When it comes about competition, things are going to change a little bit as not all the competitors suitable for the hatchback version are also offering a station wagon variant.
The Impreza is maybe one of the coolest models offered in a station wagon variant. It uses a 2.0-liter horizontally-opposed four-cylinder producing 148 HP and 146 lb-ft of torque and is being priced from under $20k.
The new generation Honda Civic will be offering a station wagon variant and a first preview has been offered at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show where the company unveiled the Civic Wagon Concept. First details on the production version suggest it will be offered with the same engine line-up as the sedan, but we will also see a new 1.6 i-DTEC engine. A hybrid version could also be a possibility.
While here in North American people aren’t so enthusiastic when it comes about station wagon models, in Europe things are a little bit different. And this is where the new Golf Variant is going to enjoy its greater success. It brings innovative features, like the availability of the new TDI BlueMotion that for sure will be among the most appreciated models.
- Looks good
- Lots of cargo space
- Highly efficient
- No prices yet
Gallery Volkswagen Golf VII Variant
At the 83rd Geneva International Motor Show, Volkswagen will present the new Golf Estate for the first time. This signifies that Europe’s most successful carmaker is extending the range of its compact bestseller in line with the previous generation to include a versatile estate car. As in the case of the classic hatchback Golf, the weight of the Estate could be reduced significantly. The new Golf is up to 105 kg lighter than its predecessor! For the first time in the history of the Golf Estate, Volkswagen is also offering this model (performance range 63 kW / 85 PS to 110 kW / 150 PS) as an independent and extremely fuel-efficient TDI BlueMotion. The 81 kW / 110 PS Golf Estate that comes with a 6-speed gearbox in this case is the most fuel-efficient Volkswagen Estate of all time, with a combined fuel consumption of 3.3 l/100 km (equivalent to 87 g/km CO2). The all-wheel drive Golf Estate 4Motion will likewise be celebrating its premiere in Geneva; it will be available as TDI in two performance levels with 77 kW / 105 PS and 110 kW / 150 PS. And Volkswagen has a Golf Estate TGI BlueMotion with natural gas drive (CNG) in the pipeline.
Boot volume with more than 100 litres. The first generation of the Golf Estate was launched on the market exactly 20 years ago. More than 1.8 million units have been sold of this practical version since then. Today, the new Golf Estate is a sporty and elegant all-round vehicle that combines low fuel consumption values and yet dynamic driving performance with premium quality and versatility. Thus the boot volume has been expanded from 505 litres to an astonishing 605 litres (loaded up to the back seat backrest). Loaded up to the front seat backrests and under the roof, the new Golf Estate offers a cargo volume of no less than 1,620 litres (predecessor: 1,495 litres). The cargo area up to the back seat is 1,055 mm long; up to the front seat backrests, the length is 1,831; the lowest width of the boot is an imposing 1,003 mm; and the boot sill is only a convenient 630 mm high – no doubt, with such values, the Golf Estate is capable of mastering the majority of all transportation challenges. In terms of equipment, the estate car features for the first time a roller blind with a two-step roll-up mechanism as luggage space cover; when not needed, the roller blind, like the net partition, can be stored under the cargo floor. In addition, the height of the cargo floor can be adjusted in the new Golf Estate; or it can be locked in place in various positions or completely dismantled. The remote unlatching of the rear backrests in the boot and the folding backrest itself have also been completely redesigned and are thus even more practical and easier to use. Also new on board the boot: four bag hooks.
The Golf Estate makes an even more striking and sportier impression. In terms of the exterior, the Golf Estate – with 4,562 mm, 307 mm longer than the hatchback – follows the precise and impressive lines of the Golf hatchback model up to the border of the front door. From the B-pillars onward, however, the most autonomous Golf Estate since the model range exists emerges by dint of purposeful design modifications and extra space.
Distinctive C-pillar becomes D-pillar. One glance at the rear makes it clear: Right from the outset, the estate car has been a member of the model range – so the new Estate was not derived from the four-door vehicle but was developed in tandem with it. That’s why the silhouette of the new Golf Estate shows particularly distinctive lines. Nevertheless, as autonomous as it is, the Estate can be recognized as a Golf at first glance. Background: The designers for the first time succeeded in transferring the shape of the C-pillar, which is like a drawn bow and is typical of the classic Golf, to the D-pillar of the Estate; visually, the “third” side window forms a part of the D-pillar.
Moreover, in contrast to the classic Golf, the so-called character line is picked up again behind the rear wheel arches and carried completely over the rear of the vehicle. This design lends the rear an even more muscular appearance. The precise window sill (upgraded by a chrome trim in the top version), the long side window area and the slightly rearward-sloping roof including roof spoiler underscore this dynamism. As a consequence, the silhouette of the new Golf looks longer, more exclusive, more powerful and sportier. A roof rail that’s optionally available or, depending on the equipment line, a standard feature, was integrated elegantly into the silhouette.
In addition, the proportions of the new Volkswagen make for a high degree of sportiness; here it’s the wheel base in particular that’s been increased from 2,578 mm to 2,637 mm in comparison to the predecessor and the crisp and short body overhangs that lend the Golf Estate its pronounced dynamic character.
Typical Golf, also from the rear. The new two-part tail lights of the Golf Estate emphasise its family affiliation to the model range and the brand. The half of the tail light that’s integrated in the boot lid, however, is bigger than in the hatchback version and forms a longer parallel line with the graphic of the boot lid in the lower area. In addition, a clear-cut difference between the Golf Estate and the “classic” Golf exists in the design of the middle part of boot lid and bumpers: Whereas the licence number of the hatchback model is in the bumper, the designers of the Golf Estate decided to integrate it with the boot lid again – analogously to the predecessor of the estate car.
Golf Estate TDI BlueMotion with independent features. The Golf Estate will be available in the Trendline, Comfortline and Highline equipment lines. The new Golf Estate TDI BlueMotion will be offered in Trendline and Comfortline. The TDI BlueMotion is different from the other models in the range both visually and technically. Viewed from the front, the most fuel-efficient model of the range with a combined fuel consumption of 3.3 l/100 km can be distinguished by a partially closed radiator grille screen. At the rear, it’s the so-called flaps on the rear window rim identifying the Golf Estate as TDI BlueMotion. In addition, the efficiency model is equipped with optimised underbody and wheel well panelling, a ground clearance that has been reduced by 15 mm and super low rolling resistance tyres. There are TDI BlueMotion monograms on the front, back and side of the body, which is optionally painted in the exclusive colour of “Clearwater Blue metallic.”
With Stop/Start system and Automatic Post-Collision Braking System. Like all new Golf cars, the Estate is equipped with a Stop/Start system and battery regeneration mode. As the first estate car in its class worldwide, it also has the new Automatic Post-Collision Braking System, which automatically slows down the vehicle when it is involved in an accident in order to reduce further its residual kinetic energy. The standard features include already in the basic version:
• airbags (seven)
• electrically adjustable wing mirrors
• outside temperature display
• chrome rings around the interior vents
• eco-HMI (fuel consumption-related information on the multi-function display / instruments)
• electronic stabilisation programme
• height-adjustable driver’s seat
• electric windows in the front and rear
• rear window wiper with intermittent setting
• air conditioning
• steering column with height and length adjustment
• centre console with storage compartment
• electronic parking brake with auto-hold function
• XDS differential lock
• tyre pressure monitoring indicator
• asymmetrically split and folding rear seat backrests, with remote unlocking
• electro-mechanical power-assist steering
• dust and pollen filter
• daytime running lights
• touchscreen with 5-inch TFT display
• green-tinted insulating glass
• central locking with wireless remote control
Premium class features for the compact class Moreover, as a new feature, there will be the PreCrash preventive occupant protection system available for the new Golf Estate. If this system detects a potential accident situation, the seatbelts of the driver and front passenger are automatically pre-tensioned to ensure the best possible protection by the airbag and belt system. When an even more critical situation is on hand, such as severe oversteer or understeer with ESC intervention, the side windows are closed (except for a small gap) and so is the sunroof. When the windows and roof are nearly closed, the head and side airbags offer optimal energy absorption and thereby achieve their best possible effectiveness.
Moreover, a broad range of high-tech systems is on offer for the Estate. They cover technologies like Front Assist including City Emergency Braking function; Automatic Distance Control (ACC); Lane Assist; Driver Alert system; road sign recognition and the latest generation of the Park Assist; as well as the automated light functions Light Assist and Dynamic Light Assist. More new systems have been added: progressive steering, a driving profile selector of up to five modes (“Eco,” “Sport,” “Normal,” “Individual” and, in combination with DCC plus “Comfort,” available for the first time in the Golf Estate); a newly developed ergonomic sport seat (ergoActive seat); a guard against using the wrong fuel in the diesels; a new deluxe climate windscreen that is also a first in this segment as well as a new generation of information and entertainment systems.
Infotainment and entertainment. All infotainment and entertainment systems of the Golf Estate are equipped with a touchscreen as standard. The new device generation is available in six extension levels and in three different display sizes: 5 inches, 5.8 inches and 8 inches. Starting with 5.8 inches, Volkswagen uses displays that have proximity sensors: as soon as the driver or front passenger moves a finger near to the touchscreen, the system automatically switches from display mode to input mode. The displays also have a function that lets users scroll through lists or browse CD covers in the media library with a wipe of the hand. A high-end sound system by Dynaudio as well as two telephone interfaces (“Comfort” and “Premium”) are optionally available.
Seven charged direct-injection engines. Just like the new Golf hatchback, the Golf Estate uses two completely newly developed engine generations. As mentioned in the beginning, all seven ver-sions are fitted as standard with a Stop/Start system (reducing fuel consumption by up to four per cent) and battery regeneration mode (cutting CO2 by around three per cent). The new Golf Estate has either a 5-speed or 6-speed gearbox, depending on the engine. Most of the TSI and TDI engines may also be combined with an automatic dual-clutch gearbox (DSG).
The petrol engines (TSI of the EA211 engine series) produce 63 kW / 85 PS, 77 kW / 105 PS, 90 kW / 122 PS and 103 kW / 140 PS. All the engines in the Golf Estate are efficient. The 1.2 TSI BlueMotion Technology with 77 kW, for example: With its agile engine, the estate uses only 5.1 l/100 km (DSG: 5.0 l/100 km); and yet it accelerates to 193 km/h, if required.
The new diesel engines (TDIs of the EA288 engine series), of course, propel the Golf Estate extremely efficiently. The power range of the three high-tech diesels: 77 kW / 105 PS, 81 kW / 110 PS and 110 kW / 150 PS. Not only the 110 PS TDI BlueMotion version with 3,3 l/100 km is very fuel-efficient in this context. Even the 320 Nm 110 kW TDI approximates the magic 4 litre mark with 4.2 l/100 km.