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by Tim Beissmann

Intimate details of the all-new Volkswagen Golf have been revealed overnight, with the German manufacturer confirming its seventh-generation small car will be lighter, more efficient, safer and more technologically advanced than its predecessor.

Expected in Australia around the middle of next year following its official unveiling in Germany on September 4, the 2013 Golf hatchback will become the second of more than 40 small and mid-sized vehicles to ride on the Volkswagen Group’s versatile new MQB platform, following the new Audi A3 that debuted at the 2012 Geneva motor show.

UK publication Autocar reports the new Volkswagen Golf will be 4255mm long (+56mm), 1799mm wide (+13mm) and 1452mm tall (-28mm). The wheelbase has grown by 59mm to 2637mm, while the front and rear track widths have been stretched 8mm and 6mm respectively.

The larger dimensions create more interior space, with rear-seat legroom growing 15mm, front and rear shoulder room up approximately 30mm, and boot space up 8.6 per cent to 380 litres.

The introduction of an electronic park brake has cleaned up the centre console area and created more storage space, while the interior is said to have a classier feel.

Volkswagen claims the new Golf will be up to 100kg lighter than the old car, with the base model set to tip the scales at around 1050kg. A higher percentage of ultra-high-strength steel throughout the platform and body shaves 23kg from the new hatch’s mass, while a revised suspension set-up with increased aluminium use saves a combined 26kg across the front and rear assemblies.

A range of engines will be offered in the Volkswagen Golf Mk7 line-up, including the company’s new 103kW 1.4-litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine with cylinder deactivation technology that should return combined cycle fuel consumption of approximately 4.8 litres per 100km.

A 77kW 1.6-litre four-cylinder diesel will also feature, sipping a hybrid-rivalling 3.8L/100km combined.

The new Golf GTI will feature a new 165kW 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine, while the Golf R – seen here in these spy shots – is expected to run a more powerful version of the current car’s powerplant.

As the images reveal, the new Golf R, which is not expected to launch until 2014, sports sinister rectangular LED daytime running lights, high-gloss black alloy wheels wrapped in low-profile rubber, a larger lower grille opening for increased cooling at the front and quad exhaust outlets at the rear, replacing the outgoing model’s centrally positioned twin pipes.

The Golf also promises to set a new benchmark for intelligent safety and driver assist systems, with the new model set to feature emergency autonomous braking at speeds below 30km/h, a collision brake system that pulls the car up in the shortest distance upon impact, adaptive cruise control, fatigue detection, lane assist, bird’s-eye view camera display and the latest version of the manufacturer’s automatic parking system.




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