Forty odd years, 35 million sold and now into its 8th generation. No wonder Volkswagen are pleased with the Golf. It’s kept the company ticking along nicely since the 1970s and if this latest version carries on where the others left off then we should expect to see the 16th generation appear sometime around 2050. When faced with a choice of which car to lease it’s easier to list the reasons why you shouldn’t opt for the new Volkswagen Golf, mainly because there aren’t any.
Time and again the VW Golf proves that it can do pretty much anything you want it to. It can be practical when you need to carry stuff, comfortable when you’re on a long drive, economical when you’re being sensible, stupidly fast when you’re not, and it can do all of that in one simple package. In fact if you are thinking about leasing a new car the question shouldn’t be, should I get a Golf, it’s more a case of which Golf should I get?
What type of Golf would you like to lease?
The reason for that is the enormous range of options available across the range. For example, would you prefer a petrol engine, a diesel engine, a mild-hybrid, or a plug-in hybrid (PHEV)? Seems like an easy question, doesn’t it? Well, yes, until you make it and then realise all you’ve done is open up a whole new list of possible choices.
Opt for petrol and you get four choices of either a 1.0-litre or a 1.5-litre and a potential power output ranging between 90bhp and 150bhp. That’s before you take into account the 2.0-litre engine that will power the GTi, GTi TCR, and Golf R when they arrive, and should be knocking on the door of the 300bhp plus hyper-hatches club.
The diesel choice should be a little more straightforward with two direct-injection engines for the eighth Golf. The 2.0-litre TDI engines generate 115bhp or 150bhp and both will be available to order with a manual gearbox as well as DSG, and the 150 PS version will also offer the option of 4MOTION all-wheel drive. The new diesel engines are among the cleanest and most efficient available, and if you want a diesel with a bit more grunt there will be a performance Golf GTD to follow.
Alternatively you could opt for a hybrid Golf, just don’t expect the range of choice to be any less.
Mild hybrid (eTSI) models come in three sizes - 110bhp, 130bhp and 150bhp - and are fitted with a 48-V belt starter generator, a 48-V lithium-ion battery and a 7-speed DSG automatic transmission. The plug-in eHybrid range will be split into two versions geared towards maximum range or performance. Both share a 1.4-litre engine and electric motor but one will offer a mere 200bhp and better efficiency while the GTE version boosts the power to 245bhp for extra oomph. The new lithium-ion battery offers 50 per cent more energy capacity (13 kWh) so electric-only range is increased too.
Golf interior goes digital
Once you’ve made that choice you can then start thinking about the rest of your new lease car. There’s a new interior designed around digital interfaces to make life easier with displays and controls that have been consistently digitalised so their functions are self-explanatory.
The new VW Golf is the first model in its price bracket with a completely digital, high-end cockpit as standard. There’s also new voice control systems, a smartphone compatible mobile key, internet connectivity for streaming and internet radio, and Amazon’s Alexa is also directly integrated in the new Golf allowing you to ask Alexa to play music, control compatible smart home devices, check news and weather, or anything else you might choose to ask about.
And obviously that’s on top of the usual colour and upholstery options, climate control, head-up display, LED lights and a whole suite of driver and safety aids. VW have even made the new Golf range ‘upgradeable’ so you can run software updates in the same way you might for your other digital devices. The 8th Generation Volkswagen Golf is essentially a digital car for the digital age.
All of which is the main reason why we haven’t spent the last few minutes of your day trying to convince you that leasing the new VW Golf is a brilliant idea. Of course it’s a brilliant idea. Pointing out the fact that a Golf is probably the most complete and practical car you could ever choose to drive strikes us as being a bit pointless, in the same way that you don’t need to be told that breathing is quite a good idea. You don’t need us stating the obvious to know that the Volkswagen Golf is a brilliant car.
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