We can all wax lyrical over the power of the Volkswagen brand, as we have done looking at the 2016 Golf GTI. It’s been the number one choice for family drivers for years simply because they’re that reliable and they’re that obvious when it comes to design. They come from the “keep it simple, stupid” line of car design. The recent departure made by the 2017 Golf Facelift models are starting to raise some eyebrows. But how much of a change are we really looking at?
On the outside
It’s often been called the “facelift model”, so it should be no surprise that we’re looking at a Golf that stands out from its past forms. It definitely looks like a Golf, there’s no surprise there. But there are subtleties in its design standing out all the more, now. It’s a car that has a stronger horizontal profile, particularly in thanks to a bit more overhang in the front bumper. All-in-all, it’s not a huge change, but it adds a welcome little bit of extra difference.
From the seat
Volkswagen takes an open approach to whom they market their cars to, and the Golf has always been great at welcoming anyone behind the wheel. Regardless of size or shape, there’s plenty of room to accommodate in seat changes, wheel height, steering in-and-out. If you’re taller, raising the wheel can get in the way of visuals on some of the vital dials in there. Still, comfort is never going to be a concern.
Under the hood
There’s a reduction of weight from other Golfs by 100kg, as Volkswagen claims. Whether it’s true or not, it’s easy to feel the difference when you get out there. The four-cylinder petrol variations come with a 138 bph 1.4 Turbo, which definitely gives the sensible little car a sensible little kick. The throttle response is slick and revving is smooth as you could want, worth trying at dealerships like Jim Ellis Volkswagen Kennesaw. All that paired with the gentle hum of an engine that stays nearly silent and you get a car that isn’t pushing any boundaries majorly but is the latest in a line of testaments to Volkswagen’s philosophy of generational refinement.
The Golf is a sensible family car, by any measure, so how sensible is the space? As we’ve already mentioned, as far as seats go, even some of the tallest drivers will have little cause for complaint. The rear is just as roomy, able to bring those equally tall friends of yours. However, there a slight snag in the raised floor in the middle which can make life for the central passenger a bit less comfortable. But the seating flexibility otherwise keeps things pleasant most of the time.
Volkswagen continues to refine their approach to style, to comfort, and to the ease of the drive. In those respects, the 2017 Golf won’t let you down at all. However, if anyone is looking at the “facelift” model for a complete revolution, they might be disappointed. It remains, and probably will remain, safe and easy for most.