2019 VW Golf S Overview: Good, easy enjoyable


2019 VW Golf S Overview: Good, easy enjoyable

“The 2019 Volkswagen Golf is the reigning hatchback king, with higher gasoline financial system than ever.”

Wonderful gasoline financial system

Peppy dealing with

Comparatively giant cargo space

Spacious cabin

Might use extra grunt

Take-it-or-leave choices

Ever because the Volkswagen Golf rolled off the meeting line in 1974, the compact hatchback’s philosophy has been easy: be a type of enjoyable, inexpensive, and somewhat-upscale vessel of transportation. It’s a easy thought, however one which few have been capable of replicate like Volkswagen. Regardless of the rise of subcompact crossovers and SUVs, the Golf troopers on, persevering with with the identical philosophy that made it an instantaneous hit practically 45 years in the past.


The Golf lineup has grown to incorporate a number of efficiency variants – the Golf GTI and the Golf R – a wagon known as the Golf SportWagen, and a crossover-competitor that’s referred to as the Golf Alltrack in a wagon physique. Sadly, with an all-new era of the Golf on the horizon, the Sportwagen and the Alltrack are performed for. However the common Golf, GTI, and R, properly they’ll nonetheless be hanging round, showcasing simply how essential these fashions are to the automaker.

For the Pokemon Go followers on the market (is anybody nonetheless enjoying that recreation?), consider the Golf as the bottom model of a Pokemon, a Charmander should you would, with the GTI and R being increased evolutions – Charmeleon and Charizard. It may not have the identical attract or efficiency, however that additionally means it’s loads cheaper. The bottom S trim, which is the one we examined, begins at $22,740. A barely fancier SE trim can be obtainable and that carries a price ticket of $25,Zero40. With the common value of a brand new automotive hovering across the $30,000 mark, the Golf is a reminder that low cost transportation remains to be round.

Inside and exterior design

Regardless of a nip and tuck as just lately as 2018, the Mk7 Golf’s bones date it again to 2015. With out the purple touches like those discovered on the GTI or the extensive haunches of the extra manic Golf R, the common Golf struggles to excite within the seems to be division. In opposition to sharper, newer, younger opponents, the Golf performs it somewhat too conservatively. The generic, bulbous design of the Golf is bleaker than a e book on an apocalypse, nevertheless it serves a perform, permitting the hatchback to stream by way of the air with a low drag coefficient of Zero.29.

2019 Volkswagen Golf S 1.4T

The run-of-the-mill styling carries to the inside the place the design borders on spartan. Boring, although, doesn’t imply uncomfortable or dysfunctional. It’s the precise reverse. In a tech-heavy world with bings, bongs, dials, buttons, and screens, the Golf’s simplistic cabin is a refined reminder of how issues was once – simple. Easy strains, easy dials, easy buttons, easy gauges, they’re all easy, straightforward to learn and simple to make use of, highlighting the Golf’s emphasis on performance.

Along with getting a easy cabin that’s straightforward to make use of, issues are additionally spacious on the within. Due to the bulbous exterior design, the Golf treats passengers to a great quantity of area and a very good quantity of cargo area. Behind the spacious and cozy second row, there’s 22.Eight cubic toes of cargo area. Fold them down, and also you’re taking a look at 52.7 cubic toes. These figures not solely make the Golf one of many extra spacious compact hatchback, however in addition they put it in the identical class as some subcompact crossovers.

Whereas providing you with the minimal to get round, the Golf hardly supplies you with further niceties. The bottom S trim we examined was as barren as automobiles come nowadays. Automated local weather management, heated seats, leather-based upholstery, these are all issues you possibly can’t get with the S trim. You do get partially power-adjustable entrance seats, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, in addition to energy door locks and home windows, but when the S trim got here with handbook home windows, we wouldn’t be stunned. You, do in spite of everything, nonetheless have to make use of a bodily key to begin the automotive.

If you happen to’re not on the “base-or-die” prepare, the upper SE trim that’s an additional $2,300 brings much more inside options. The SE brings leatherette upholstery, heated entrance seats, and the choice so as to add an auto-dimming rearview mirror. It’s a significantly better listing of normal tools.

Tech options

Efficiency isn’t the one factor that separates the common Golf from the GTI and the Golf R; Volkswagen additionally separates the trio with customary tech options. The entry-level S trim comes with a modest 6.5-inch touchscreen operating VW’s MIB II system that comes with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto by way of Volkswagen Automotive-New App-Join. The infotainment system’s lackadaisical in the same option to a canine on a lazy Sunday – sluggish to react, irrespective of what number of instances you prod, poke, or shout. We additionally had a number of cases the place Apple CarPlay freaked out once we inputted a vacation spot into our telephone and it refused to show on the display. If you happen to select to not use one of many smartphone techniques, you’re solely left with a handful of different issues to toggle by way of that may most likely solely be used as soon as to set every part as much as your liking. In different phrases, the infotainment system isn’t precisely sturdy and until you’re toggling by way of radio stations, there’s nothing attention-grabbing there.

2019 Volkswagen Golf S 1.4T

There’s little or no along with the touchscreen. There’s just one USB port that’s positioned in an odd cubby on the backside of the middle console, Bluetooth, and a six-speaker audio system. The SE trim will get an Eight-inch touchscreen, satellite tv for pc radio, and keyless entry with push-button begin.

On the security entrance, Volkswagen has bolstered the Golf’s listing of normal security options with extra driver-assist options. Whereas not as sturdy as Honda Sensing or Toyota Security Sense 2.Zero, the Golf’s suite of normal tech has the entire main stuff. Ahead collision warning, automated emergency braking, blind spot monitoring, pedestrian detection, a rearview digicam, and rear cross visitors alert are all customary on the S. The upper up SE brings the choice of tacking on adaptive cruise management and lane maintaining help.

In comparison with the high-performance Golf fashions, the common Golf isn’t too far behind the GTI in relation to tech. The range-topping GTI Autobahn comes with a multifunction show, high-beam help, a Fender audio system, and the entire SE’s tools as customary. The R is the Golf’s most tech-forward choice with the model’s coveted Digital Cockpit system. Aside from that, the R has the identical tech because the Golf SE.

Driving impressions

2019 sees the Golf obtain the identical 1.Four-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine because the all-new Jetta sedan. Energy for the small mill is rated at rated at as much as 147 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque. Which may seem to be a typo as a result of final 12 months’s turbocharged 1.Eight-liter four-pot was good for 170 hp and 199 lb-ft of torque with the obtainable six-speed automated. Apart from creating a fair bigger hole between the common Golf and the GTI and R, the brand new engine ends in a drastic enhance in gasoline financial system. The 2019 Golf is rated by the EPA at as much as 29 mpg metropolis, 37 mpg hwy, and 32 mpg mixed. Final 12 months, the perfect the Golf might get was 25 mpg metropolis, 34 mpg hwy, and 29 mpg mixed. In the true world, the figures are much more spectacular, as we noticed a mean of 40 mpg with principally freeway miles.

2019 Volkswagen Golf S 1.4T

Talking of the hole between the Golf siblings, it’s bigger than earlier than because of the brand new 1.Four-liter engine. Probably the most environment friendly Golf GTI is rated at 27 mpg mixed, whereas the Golf R is one mpg behind at 26 mpg mixed. In our testing, the Golf GTI was spot on for its mixed ranking in the true world, whereas the Golf blew the doorways off of its anticipated figures. If you happen to’re completely satisfied buying and selling efficiency for gasoline financial system, there’s a transparent winner.

Whereas it’s not probably the most highly effective engine in the marketplace, the brand new 1.Four-liter turbocharged engine feels extra sturdy than you’d count on from the numbers. Maintain your foot glued to the throttle pedal and also you’ll even get a tiny little bit of wheel spin. Round city, it’s a positive engine with a great quantity of grunt. On the open freeway, the engine’s lack of puff makes merging somewhat cumbersome, requiring somewhat little bit of planning to make sure different drivers aren’t being held up. With the usual six-speed handbook transmission, maintaining the engine in its great place is just not solely straightforward, but in addition pleasurable. It’s additionally refreshing to see VW proceed to supply a handbook gearbox on the hatch. If shifting a handbook gearbox isn’t your factor, an eight-speed automated is offered for $1,100.

2019 Volkswagen Golf S 1.4T

The choice to borrow the smaller, extra environment friendly engine from the Jetta is a transparent means for Volkswagen to make the Golf a stronger commuter. However the car’s suspension was already within the commuter boat. In contrast to the peppy GTI and the spirited Golf R, the Golf’s easy, compliant journey won’t ever get tiresome. Erring to the aspect of being comfortable, highways, rutted metropolis roads, and odd potholes on aspect streets are handled easily. The small 15-inch alloy wheels which have a juicy little bit of sidewall most likely assist, too.

Whereas VW would slightly you select considered one of its costlier choices should you benefit from the occasional act of hooliganism, the Golf embodies the previous adage of driving a sluggish automotive quick. You get the sense that the Golf is able to a lot extra, because it hugs corners with a sense that with the precise teaching it may very well be a star. Relaxation assured, although, that should you’re in search of a commuter-friendly, metropolis automotive, that’s the Golf’s candy spot.


There are fairly a number of hatchbacks to discover in the marketplace nowadays, which embody the Mazda3, Toyota Corolla Hatchback, and Honda Civic hatchback. However numerous shoppers will most likely evaluate the Golf to its sportier variants that share the identical showroom ground. In relation to efficiency, consider the Golf, Golf GTI, and Golf R as chilies. The Golf is a pepperoncini, which is to say delicate at greatest, the Golf GTI a habanero, daring and spicy, whereas the Golf R is a straight up Carolina Reaper – scorching, scorching, scorching.

In comparison with the usual Golf, the Golf GTI is an additional $5,750, however comes extra options that make it a efficiency choice. For one, there’s the turbocharged 2.Zero-liter inline-four that makes 228 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque – will increase of 81 horsepower and 75 pound-feet of torque over the common Golf. That’s a big distinction. Whereas the Golf has you attempting to find extra energy on the freeway and when being pushed arduous, some further grunt wouldn’t be a foul factor. Further efficiency components on the Golf GTI embody a limited-slip differential and sport suspension.

Past the sporty stuff, you’re getting extra customary tools, too. Heated windshield washer nozzles, purple brake calipers, 18-inch wheels, heated entrance seats, partially power-adjustable entrance seats, and people improbable plaid seats are included with the bottom GTI. Taking a look at the entire extras you get, an additional $6,000 is smart.

2019 Volkswagen Golf S 1.4T

In our evaluation, we discovered the GTI to be the best mixture of efficiency and luxury. Whereas the journey’s firmer than the common Golf’s the GTI isn’t uncomfortable and it’s way more succesful on a curvy highway. The additional oomph from the engine additionally signifies that there’s greater than sufficient energy to cross on the freeway. The one grievance we had was gasoline financial system, however that’s a trade-off we’d be more than pleased to make.

Evaluating the Golf to the Golf R isn’t fairly truthful – similar to giving somebody that’s anticipating a pepperoncini a Carolina Reaper. Costing practically double the value of a base Golf (the distinction is $18,550), the Golf R is for people who need neck-breaking efficiency in a flexible physique. Energy for the Golf R comes from a 2.Zero-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that cranks out 288 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque – 141 horsepower and 96 pound-feet greater than the common-or-garden Golf.

If 141 horsepower isn’t sufficient to entice you, the Golf R provides all-wheel drive, adaptive suspension, an XDS differential system, three-mode digital stability management, and bigger brakes. Non-performance options embody adaptive headlights, 19-inch wheels, dual-zone local weather management, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, and 12-way energy sport seats. There’s extra tech, too, because the Golf R comes with Volkswagen’s Digital Cockpit, adaptive cruise management, and a Fender audio system as customary.

You get the sense that the Golf is able to a lot extra, because it hugs corners with a sense that it may very well be a star.

If efficiency is what you’re after, the Golf R has it in spades. Go for the automated transmission and also you get a launch-control characteristic that makes the hatchback as fast as bona fide sports activities automobiles. Then there’s the best way the Golf R handles. With a firmer journey that may be adjusted by way of the adaptive suspension, it’s probably the most athletic of the trio round corners. There’s additionally extra suggestions coming by way of the steering wheel than the opposite two Golfs, whereas the beefy brakes are additionally the perfect of the bunch. Surprisingly, the Golf R retains the identical consolation stage because the GTI, making it able to tackling the each day commute with the identical poise. As soon as once more, gasoline financial system is without doubt one of the few downsides.

Selecting between the three facilities round one factor: what sort of warmth stage are you in search of in a chili?

Peace of thoughts

2019 marks the final 12 months of VW’s Folks First Guarantee. The prolonged protection features a six-year, 72,000-mile restricted guarantee. That’s one of many longer ones in the marketplace and will assist preserve any reliability issues at bay. The Golf can be coated by a seven-year, 100,000-mile corrosion perforation guarantee and a powertrain guarantee of six years, 72,000 miles.

Within the Nationwide Freeway Visitors Security Administration’s (NHTSA) testing, the Golf earned a five-star general security ranking. Breaking that rating down, the Golf earned a four-star general entrance ranking, a five-star general aspect ranking, and a four-star rollover ranking. The Insurance coverage Institute for Freeway Security (IIHS) didn’t give the Golf considered one of its awards. The hatchback did properly within the IIHS’ crash checks, however had headlights that earned a ranking of Poor, which is the bottom rating obtainable. For comparability’s sake, the Golf GTI was named a Prime Security Choose.

Along with the security options listed above, the Golf comes with digital stability management, anti-lock brakes, brake help, and an clever crash response system.

How DT would configure this automotive

Commuting to work is already a chore and the bottom S trim doesn’t have a lot to liven it up. The SE trim is the one we’d go along with, particularly because it provides the bigger Eight-inch touchscreen, distant keyless entry, push-button begin, and a panoramic sunroof. It, crucially, can be optioned with extra security options because of the Driver Help package deal, which provides excessive beam help, adaptive cruise management, lane maintaining help, and extra. The icing on the Black Forest cake is that it’s not all that costlier than the entry-level S trim.

Our take

As an inexpensive compact, few can provide what the Golf can. With higher gasoline financial system than earlier than, the Golf cements its place because the rational selection amongst its peppier brothers. The Golf is beginning to present its age, although, and choices just like the Mazda3, Civic hatchback, and Toyota Corolla Hatchback have more energizing designs and extra options. If you would like a modicum of efficiency, the Golf GTI is the higher choice. Sporty this Golf is just not.

Out of the three Golf fashions that Volkswagen gives, the GTI is the one we’d get. Being the center baby, it has probably the most pleasurable quantity of energy, practically the identical on a regular basis ease because the common Golf, and some extra options that give it a extra refined really feel. It’s additionally some of the amusing scorching hatches to drive.

Need extra choices? Take a look at our favourite automobiles of 2019.

Do you have to get one?

Sure, so long as you’re not desirous about sportiness. With the brand new turbocharged engine, the Golf is clearly the choice within the lineup that may aid you lower your expenses on gasoline on the expense of enjoyment. Clean, comfy, and refined, the Golf is an inexpensive compact automotive for the fashionable age.

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