3 Stars from Auto Express on the new Volkswagen Golf 1.9 TDI Estate. It’s not super exciting from a visual standpoint and I don’t like the sharp angles being introduced but the 2.0L TDI sounds promising.
Despite not having the handling finesse of the hatchback version, Volkswagen’s Golf estate is a hugely capable family car
Patience has been an important virtue for anyone hanging on for the arrival of Volkswagen’s Golf estate.
While Kia swiftly followed the launch of its Cee’d hatchback with a practical station wagon, VW has taken three years to add a load-lugger to its family car line-up. Now it’s here, was it worth the wait?
The newcomer features a snazzy chrome grille and roof rails as standard, while the wheelbase is the same as the standard hatchback’s. From the C-pillar backwards, though, the estate is 35.2cm longer, due to an extended rear overhang and roofline. The result is a practical 505-litre boot (up from 350 litres in the hatch), which grows to 1,550 litres with the rear seats folded.
At the back, the restyled lights and plain tailgate are better in the metal than our picture suggests. However, the neat rear end doesn’t share the typical VW look of other models in the range.
The same can’t be said of the cabin, though. The interior will be familiar to any current Golf owner, as it has the same classy dashboard design and high-grade materials.
However, at the back, a small lip restricts access to the boot, and the fiddly head restraints have to be removed for the split rear seats to fold completely flat. Still, doing this frees up a usefully level floor and 1.74-metre load length. And the driving experience is much as you would expect from a longer, heavier Golf. While the estate doesn’t have the nimble feel of its shorter siblings, it’s still a respectable performer with excellent high-speed stability, good refinement and supple suspension.
We tested the 1.9-litre TDI, the entry-level diesel which VW expects to be the best-selling model, and it proved to be an adequate performer. There will also be a 138bhp 2.0-litre TDI, plus a 100bhp 1.6-litre petrol version priced from £14,300.