Volkswagen Golf Mk8 – A complete new generation of the benchmark
It is always big news when a new Golf is set to see the light. Because, most often, it will become the ultimate benchmark for what a car should be capable of. Volkswagen made a smash hit with the mk7. An exterior that suited many for being both restrained and aggressive, an interior as refined and usable as a, well a Golf interior, and heaps of different models to suit every need. Want to go fast? Get the R version. Or if you want to get something more electric, choose the GTE or even the e-Golf. Why I am blabbering about the last generation Golf then? It is to show the magnitude of what the mk8 is going to be compared against. It is therefore time to get into the new Volkswagen Golf mk8, so sit back and relax. Because this is a big one.
I have difficulties finding the words for the exterior. On one hand it has been tightened up with thinner lights and a more swooping bonnet. On the other hand, the massive front opening is not as pleasing to look at as I had hoped, and at some angles, the thin front lights, LEDs as standard, make the car look like it is squinting, and it is not pretty. In general though, it feels like Volkswagen has tried to make it as approachable as possible, which in turn has made it somewhat bland. Maybe it will grow on me. The rear actually looks rather familiar without that many changes, but it is definitely the front that has gotten the biggest update.
Inside you get a fully digital cockpit as standard, and I hope to see an update of the already nail impressively good interface. In other words, how it is all presented to you via the screen.
There are very few actual buttons. Almost everything is controlled via the middle screen, and the rest has been replaced by touch sensitive surfaces. Because of this, the interior is very simple and more space can be left for design. Speaking of which. If what I wrote above didn’t express it, the interior is completely new, apart from the iconic steering wheel. Volkswagen nailed the interior.
Two things to note. From the pictures, it seems that Volkswagen took some notes from my review of the e-Golf and made the place where you store your mobile phone and other bits both wider and higher in order to fit your hand all the way and also to fit any type of phone. It also looks like the part over the glove compartment at the passenger side could possibly be used for storage since there is an indent where the lights come from.
New driver assist features such as Travel assist is there to help you drive assist you on the road. It steers, brakes and accelerates all on its own for speeds up to 210 km/h. However, for legal reasons, you need to keep at least one hand on the steering wheel. And if you don’t, the car will freak out after 15 seconds. A system called Car2x is supposed to use cars that communicate with each other to give the actual traffic situation. This gives you a live overview of the roads around you with a radius of up to 800 m. This is a standard which Volkswagen is very adamant about in order for more future cars to use it. Effectively creating a complete new way of getting real time information. Very interesting tech. There is a whole load of more tech, but as more and more tech is released in cars. It is difficult to go through everything without sounding like a student writing an essay, so I will only write about what I find the most interesting.
Regarding engine options, the key words are hybridization with 48 V technology. Diesel alternatives are still available, but outnumbered compared to petrol and hybrid alternatives. Credit where credit is due. With a special AdBlue injection, the NOx that comes out of the tailpipe is now reduced by 80 percent compared to the predecessor. If that is with the new, harder, driving cycle is not revealed. There will be 2 diesel engines with 115 hk and 150 hk respectively, both being a 2.0 L engine. In the future there will be a GTD version.
There will be three petrol alternatives, or power levels, available. 110, 130 and 150 hk. If you go for 110 hk you will get Volkswagens first three cylinder engine in the Golf with a mighty 1.0 L. The two upper power alternatives have the 1.5 L and have cylinder deactivation. All three engine options have the possibility of eTSI, or mild hybrids. They are only compatible with the automatic DSG gearbox.
Now to the more powerful alternatives. The chargeable hybrid, or eHybrid. There will be two options. The first will have focus on range with 204 hk. The second one is the GTE version and is off course part of the new GT-range. This will have 245 hk from a 1.4 L petrol engine and an electric engine with 13 kWh (increase of 50 percent compared to the predecessor).
In the future there will be additions to the fleet with the GTI, GTI TCR and R which will be getting power from an 2.0 L engine, giving reason to believe that there will be no hybrid system. The power for the top models will be over 300 hp but information about these will be revealed later. If you wait for something good…
The new Golf mk8 is here to take names and get up on top. To become the everlasting benchmark which so many car manufactures have to compete against. How it will fair only time can tell. But from the pictures and specs. It seems that Volkswagen has done their homework, as they do when there is a new Golf. What is left to know is to get the prices and after that, hopefully a review.
The car is set to come to Swedish dealers in the beginning of 2020 and be available for order at the end of 2019.