VW Golf 1.6 Bluemotion

Irish people are a strange and unique bunch of people, we get hung up on details and usually fail to see the over all picture. Take the apprentice, in one show they were making a calendar for Ford about the Fiesta, sounds easy right? Well they made it look hard, one group forgot to put any of the car makers logos on the pages and the other just cancelled Christmas, they left December out of the calendar altogether. You see they got all the right details but forgot what the bigger picture was about.
VW don’t make those mistakes, the Golf I’ve been driving this week has a huge attention to the details but the overall picture is looked after just as much. The looks haven’t changed all that much from the last model, it looks a bit meaner around the front and a little bland at the rear but you can still tell what heritage it’s from.
There’s still a big clunk from the doors as you get in, it’s inside where all the real work has happened. While the dash layout is still the same the dashboard is very solid and well put together, in fact if feels like its been made out of one piece of plastic, everything is in the same place as the rest of the VW’s but still it feels different. Its a bit like pumping iron, when your finished it’s still you, just a tougher version.
Then you start it up, to be honest I found it hard to tell it was a turbo diesel, it makes little or no noise when you get it going even on the move you have to push the engine to get some noise from it. The power comes from a 1.6 110bhp diesel unit, but it’s very different because instead of the turbo cutting in and having tonnes of power but only at high revs, the power delivery is constant and the rev range of each gear is really long so you can hold the gear for a lot longer, it’s a great package.
It handles like a Golf too, safe and predictable. When you push it like I did on a test track it understeers first and then push some more it oversteers, that’s a strange sensation in a front wheel drive car.
The Golf still has one of the most comfortable interiors in the hatchback market, the back seats are set at a rakish angle so from the back the car feels much bigger than it is but it still has a very useable boot. In the front there’s lots to play with. My test car was fitted with a Premium hands free kit which takes control of your phone which turns the Golf into the biggest mobile phone in history, you can use the voice control to make a phone call or scroll through your phone book on the MFD in the middle of the dials. By far and away the best feature of the whole Golf experience was the parking assistant, just press the button and drive along while the sensors measure the parking spaces, when it finds one it tells you to put the car in reverse, you still control the pedals but the car does the steering into a parallel space, even though I tried my best I couldn’t make it miss the space. No more having to worry if your car will fit into that space, just let the car do it for you, it should be on every car, now.
The Golf has always been the Daddy of hatchbacks, every car maker wants to make one, a car that people buy in the millions that still has a bit of status. A car that’s just as happy nipping too the shops as it is crossing a continent, it might even do it on one tank of fuel too, as it’s the Bluemotion I got well over 55mpg from it. It’s very quiet and comfortable, it’s not that exciting but it’s not meant to be, it does what it’s designed to do be a happy little hatchback that can take people and things places they want to go.
Prices start at €23,180, the test car which included park assist for €24,708 which I would buy for the parking feature alone, a great car that sits in tax band A. Log onto www.Volkswagen.ie for more details or contact your local dealer.