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Last 7 Days

by Jez Spinks

The seventh-generation Volkswagen Golf has been revealed at a media event in Berlin, Germany, ahead of its public debut at the 2012 Paris motor show later this month.

Volkswagen’s latest small car is the first genuine all-new model since the Mark V of 2004 and brings sharper styling, a roomier, higher-quality cabin, new safety technology and a range of more efficient engines.

While there’s a more chiselled to look to the new VW Golf’s design, the overall shape is again evolutionary – including the retention of classic Golf cues such as the wide C-pillar.

The Volkswagen Golf grows once again, this time stretching another 56mm for an overall length of 4255mm, accompanied by a 13mm increase in width and a 28mm-lower roofline that contributes to a more slippery shape. The front wheels move 43mm further forward as part of a wheelbase increase of 59mm.

Bigger external dimensions bring additional space inside. The front seats move backwards 20mm for more legroom up front while Volkswagen says rear passenger legroom increases by 15mm. There’s also more shoulder space front and rear.

The boot expands by 30 litres to 380L, and a new optional fold-flat front passenger seat can create a load length of 2.14 metres.

Visually, there are significant changes to the interior. The centre stack is now angled towards the driver and features a touchscreen display as standard – ranging in size from 5.8 inches to an 8.0-inch satellite navigation version with smartphone-inspired ergonomics.

An electronic parking brake replaces the hand-release lever of the outgoing Golf.

A new range of technologies will also be available on the Mark 7 VW Golf that goes on sale in Europe in November before reaching Australia in early 2013.

PreCrash will tighten seat belts and close windows if the system detects an imminent crash, an adaptive cruise control system includes a so-called Front Assist feature that can control the speed of the Golf in relation to other vehicles from 150 to 0km/h, a low-speed crash avoidance system helps to prevent rear-enders, while there’s also lane departure and driver inattention warning systems, plus the latest version of Park Assist that provides semi-autonomous parallel parking.

Steering is via a new variable ratio rack, and a new Driver Profile system enables the driver to choose various throttle and transmission configurations that include Eco, Sport, Normal, Individual and – with DSG dual-clutch gearboxes – Comfort modes.

The new Volkswagen Golf sits on the VW Group’s new ‘MQB’ modular platform that will underpin a vast number of models including the Audi A3 and numerous other VWs as well as Seats and Skodas.

The Golf 7’s body is stronger and lighter, with a 23kg weight saving contributing to a reduction in the Volkswagen small car’s overall mass of up to 100kg.

That aids fuel consumption and emissions throughout the new VW Golf range.

A 1.6-litre turbo diesel uses just 3.8 litres per 100km, with a 1.4-litre four-cylinder turbo taking advantage of a cylinder deactivation system that at times turns it into a two-cylinder to use just 4.8L/100km.

Initial launch engines will also include a 1.2-litre turbo and a 2.0-litre turbo diesel.

Click on the Photos tab above to see a full gallery of the German brand’s crucial all-new small car.

Share your views on the all-new Volkswagen Golf in the comment thread below.


  • Henry F

    I think the exterior looks a big improvement over the current model and the interior miles better (from photos on other websites). I’m sure it’ll do very well.

    For some reason, however, I’d still go for a Japanese built car.

    • BP

      “I think the exterior looks a big improvement over the current model” , there are big improvements. Looks pretty much the same to me, though this will sell in boat loads :/

    • Guest

       Very attractive design – interior is particularly improved. It looks very expensive inside.

  • AutoMoto

    Nothing big change as was expected. I wonder if you can any hybrid model. 

    • Luke Brinsmead

      Maybe, but with the new BlueMotion emitting just 85 grams who would want a hybrid which is; more expensive, heavier and has less luggage space. Unless the London traffic congestion charge changes from 100 to under 85 grams Volkswagen won’t be in a hurry to release a hybrid version anytime soon, especially considering the new BlueMotion will only use 3.2 litres.

      • Zaccy16

        Exactly! Why would anyone by a Prius!

  • Trump

    Suitably lazy design studio for an Audi-VW new release

    • Legnab

      Evolution not revolution , helps retained values ,unlike many asian models that change radically for changes sake , no sense of identity and hence poor resale .

      Looks good, sharper , interior classy as usual , no darth vader dash treatment leave that to ford .

      • Nada

        Like ‘less is more’ but ‘less can be a bore’ etc etc. Though i agree with the tweaks, interior is better looking, lets hope VAG provide all the Euro options to buyers.

      • K20A

        Actually, most ‘asian models’ cars have better retained values than European cars.. even a toddler would know that :)

        Also, they don’t change radically for changes sake.. but their design language is more dynamic and evolve at a much faster pace. It’s part of their culture and aesthetics.. that’s their ‘identity’.

        Suggest you leave imaginary Wolfsburg and go to Tokyo, Seoul, or Hong Kong to get a feel of the pace.Understand you have Golf tattooed to your private parts but why always need to bash other brands / cars?

        • Luke Brinsmead

          It’s not about the parent company’s country, it’s about the company’s design language. 
          Most new Korean cars are now designed in Germany – to their benefit. The new Mazda3 was mostly designed in Mazda’s German design studio by Dutch and English designers. Also, the original Mazda3 designer omits he was greatly inspired by the Peugeot 307 and Alfa Romeo 147.

          • Des

            Agreed. It has a lot to do with who’s the lead designer in charge, as they tend to dictate what design language is promoted and explored by the team of designers.

          • Des

            Another example – Opel’s chief designer is an Australian and they’ve produced some very fine looking vehicles in recent years.

          • Phil

            I wonder if there was any inspiration, at all, that went through the designers’ heads for this Golf…

          • Norm

            Sharp ‘n creasy?

          • Vince

            Man, the Mazda 3, Peugeot 307 and Alfa Romeo 147 were all great lookers.

          • Phunken

            Walter De Silva was the design chief during the 147 era… now the head of the VW group overlooking the portfolio that include Audi…

        • http://twitter.com/SamMoss8191 Sam Moss

          I have to agree with you about the pace of Asian culture, I was in Tokyo recently for two weeks and it was an exhausting but exhilarating experience. I was also shocked at how many German and French cars I saw!

          • Keya

            yea well the japs know their cars are ugly…but their ego won’t let them even speak the words hyundai or kia

          • Chris R

            And you barely see Japanese makes in S.Korea. It’s an unusual experience to be in a country (any country) & not be surrounded by Japanese cars.  

          • Chris R

            I’m in Tokyo annually for a month, and I thoroughly enjoy myself there every time. But boy are their cars woeful, reliable & frugal yes, but ugly as sin. 

            But in Tokyo it makes sense to be buying the little hatch-backs, that one sees everywhere. It’s never made sense to me though as to why there is a similar trend over here?  

          • Luke Brinsmead

            Europeans and Japanese like hatchbacks for their compactness and versatility. Also, their family sizes are usually quite small, so luggage space is not as important.

            Americans on the other hand like sedans for their larger trunk size for their larger families. Also, parking in most parts of America is a breeze in a medium to large sedan because most of their car spaces are designed for larger SUVs.

        • AutoMoto

           Redbook figures: 3 year old car. Retained value in %
          Audi A3 1.4T 61%, Honda Civic Sport 58%, Hyundai i30 2.0 51%, Mazda 3 Neo 63%, Mercedes B200T 59%, Toyota Corolla Ascent 65%, VW Golf 90TSI DSG 68%

          • APSV

            Green or City Car
            Suzuki Swift – 83%, Mazda 2 – 82%, VW Polo – 81% 

        • Legnab

          Not really intereseted in flash here today gone tomorrow designs , might suit those who MUST HAVE THE LATEST , soon fades as the next latest look appears , change for the sake of change , only fools part with their money on that basis , forever poor .

          • Phil

            Thanks for the unsolicited financial advice, gramps…

          • Hung Low

            Is that why you still get around in your velvet tracksuit Bungle?

          • Legnab

            Fung drops in , thought you would be out on the tray top in your grimy overalls collecting broken crummers and falcoons .

          • Phunken

            thank you Dali Lama

      • Henry Toussaint

         I reckon the front of the current model looks better…

      • Keya

        ASIAN models that change radically for changes sake??? ok…wt F…
        like K20A said, go on a holiday and see their pace of life and learn some culture…

        regarding change…japanese honda and toyota’s design seem to be european like huh? because they’re ugly in the past, now and future…

      • PS

        Asian market demands for radical changes, this is true for other products besides cars in Asian countries. Countries like Japan and Singapore penalise owners who keep older cars with higher levies, to stimulate their own economy I suppose.

        Funny enough, a lot of Japanese cars have been criticised for ‘evolutionary’ designs rather than revolutionary. The Accord Euro, Honda Jazz and Honda Civic have all been slammed for looking too similar between generations. But the European counterparts (VW and Audi) have been very successful with this formula.

        • Kyle

          The Honda models have been very successful too, in terms of sales, but they get a much harder rap for their evolutionary design. Don’t know why that is the case – just a mystery of the human psyche, I guess…

    • Phunken

      Funny cos VW bought Italdesign Giugiaro citing they want some fresh new talent to left their styling to have more ’emotion’… 

  • Hjalle

    It’s a nice update to the current design, I like it. I showed my mum the photos because she is in the market for a new Golf (more specifically the estate) and her reaction to the above photos were ‘I can’t see a difference’. So to the average punter I don’t think sees the small updates, which means there is potential for the average buyer to miss the new technology inside the car.

    I’m sure it will sell well though, good job VW

  • Zaccy16

    Has nice clean lines, the interior looks like it raised the quality benchmark for small cars again!

    • Jim

      Need I remind you of the comments you made, just yesterday, regarding the Peugeot 208 GTi’s interior?:

      “interior isnt up to VW standards” “the tacky plastic stands out!”

      Funny, given the liberal use of plastic that really “stands out”, in this car.

      • Zaccy16

        It doesn’t it looks classy an up to date on the golf while on the 208 it has cheap air vents and details

  • Gregory

    Front looks slicker, not convinced about the shape of tailights or the space above them and below the rear windscreen though. The side profile is looking more and more like the A3. It looks more compact than the current model, which is nice.

    • Luke Brinsmead

      I’m much more convinced about the rear lights on this new Golf, I recently bought a Golf 6 and the one thing I don’t like about it that much, as far as exterior design goes, is the rear lights – they don’t stop where the bumper finishes on the sides and they are slightly too big and too oval-shaped.

      • Legnab

        Good choice luke enjoy .

  • Norm

    More room….great! Less weight…fab! Better economy…Wonderful! Improved interior…terrific! DSG – DOH!!

  • Norm

    The expanses of matt silver in the centre stack and under the dials….not so much.

    • Luke Brinsmead

      Ditto for me, I think it looks tacky on any car, but in the Golf it somehow looks just ok.

  • Jim

    That C-pillar is a bit wide.

    • Norm

      Make that C Pillar longer/wider still – put a window in it and call it wagon! Done!

      • whatthe…

        The wide C pillar is the Golf trademark. Funny how no one complains about it blocking rear vision.

        • MrDucati

          That’s what i thought! I drove my friend’s 3 and whilst reversing it was kinda hard to spot what’s behind the C pillar, and the mazda’s was smaller in size than what’s on this.

          • Legnab

            RVC fixes a stiff neck , or just get truck mirrors .

          • Phunken

            Thats the trade off for evolutionary design, if they make the C pillar smaller imagine the out cry.

  • Matty

    Well, I guess they played it safe…

  • James

    I’m surprised they went all-plastic with the centre console. Seems almost like a step backwards.

    • O123

      other websites have one with gloss black, looks much better

      • Legnab

        Yes the piano black looks better , silver to pander to the star wars boys .

        • Phil

          And piano black to pander to conservative oldies like you?

          • Luke Brinsmead

            I’d rather have “Piano” Black than cheap-looking stereo silver.

          • Phil

            Meh, plastic is plastic.

          • Norm

            I’d rather have neither. 

          • Nada

            Not having sat in the car, I’d see those glossy reflections being annoying.

          • Legnab

            Phil prefers the all metal dash aka FB holden 1961 .

    • Phil

      Agreed – especially with all the praise for their soft-touch materials.

  • Larry

    Volvo called; they want their center console back.

  • Luke

    BMW steering wheel?

  • Golfschwein

    It’s reassuringly Golf, which is for better or worse for folks on a 50:50 split. I love it – OF COURSE!!! – and will be lining up in late 2013.

    • Hung Low

      Some big dream you got there…soooo inspiring. Personally, you would love a mobile Hot Dog car as LONG as it wears a Golf badge.

  • C Milz

    Love it! It was never supposed to be a massive change but it is enough for me to want to change my current Golf to the new one! Can’t wait to see the GTI

  • Robin_Graves


    • Legnab

      NEW falcoon yawn

      • Phil

        What’s the Falcon got to do with the Golf?

        • Poison_Eagle

          Maybe he was orphaned or castrated by one as a kid? Who knows…

  • Pauly

    Am I the only one that thinks it looks yuck?

    It will be intresting to see what the next Scirocco looks like!Ill wait for the GTI and R to be released I think.

  • Mopester

    The rear quarter actually reminds me of the MK IV Golf.

  • Xristo303

    Looks to me a bit like the current polo from the front.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=737660467 Kit Ho

    the steering wheel is IDENTICAL to the C-Class

    • Sumpguard

      Yeah it looks very similar.

           I like the look of the golf regardless of model to be honest but simply don’t trust them enough to own one and my warnings have come directly from owners.

  • nugsdad

    I hear the name ( for the game) came from Gentlemen Only Ladies Forbidden. Funny name for a car which is essentially a shopping trolley.

    • Sumpguard

      ….and I heard it came from Generations Of Large Faults .

      • JP

        It’s actually the German word for “Gulf” as in Gulfstream. (Not the plane).

  • AvidF1fan

    looks like a bigger Polo.. too bad the tail lights aren’t like the Polo’s, coz they’re terrible. hopefully they can do much better with the GTI

    • Luke Brinsmead

      Interesting, I think the Polo’s rear lights are terrible.

      • AvidF1fan

         Maybe I’m a little bit biased, considering I signed up to buy a Polo GTI.

  • Guest

    Looks like the old one. Only a train spotter would pick the changes.

  • F1

    I like it..

    Car’s shouldn’t be overstyled..

    But personally I wouldn’t spend money on a German car.. Don’t ask me why

  • Wile E Coyote

     Predictably bland and boring Bet they have the next seven generations designed

  • Gianni

    Quite ugly compared to the current-gen’s sleek lines. The squareness may work on a Passat but not a Golf.

  • 42 = The Answer

    I wonder how much the designers got paid?!

  • Basil Exposition

    Not very exciting to look at. The competiton is getting closer… Less inclined to buy one now than 10 years ago. Lingering concerns over reliability and running costs don’t help either.

  • Morpheous1

    Disappointed! Wanted something more than a rehash in terms of exterior design. I know we were all expecting evolution not revolution but its just so similar!

  • Jober As A Sudge

    Decent evolution on the current design…still a good looking car. If long term reliability has been addressed then they will be onto a winner yet again

  • Shak

    Although I’ll reserve FINAL judgement till I drive one, it just looks too evolutionary and not revolutionary enough. If this is meant to be a genuinely all new model, it should be all new in the design as well!!

  • Lindsay


  • gt86.com.au

    The interior is a nice update / very classy.. the eterior just looks akward.. prefer the styling of the current golf VI although the golf IV has the nicest exterior by far.. lets hope they do a different nose for the GTI and golf R like they had done with the MK V.. This thing just doesn’t cut it.

  • Deano305

    Love it. Much better than expected, perfect to replace my 3yo Mk6 Golf

  • Bimmerc

    The front looks very “Jetta”

    • Anthony Mindel

      I also thought the front is very Jetta looking.


    Fresh lemon~ On sale now~

    • Captain Nemo®™

      Lemon??? Grapefruit is more like it.  A Grapefruit is basically a really big lemon which describes all VeeDuds

  • Balir Waldorf

    I’m sure this car is technically brilliant, and drives very well. But personally i really dont like the styling, the MK6 was nice but this just puts me off. I’d rather a V40/DS4/Giulietta/A-Class/1-Series.

  • Car Fanatic

    Nice, very nice, well done Veedub.

    Nugs, the car is named after a the Gulf Stream. Good to see all the retarded haters out in force.

    • Sumpguard

      At least they aren’t attacking the people and just the car 😉

    • Garrywhopper

      How’s your sister

  • Golfschwein

    Here’s hoping I can order mine with the piano black dash and tan leather combo, although it might be deemed off-limits for grey, grey, grey Australia.

  • Jober As A Sudge

    Any reason why the 118TSI was dropped from the line up? Reliability issues or just replacing it with a 1.8L turbo?

    • Luke Brinsmead

      Aparently it was too expense to build, either that or it was too complicated for it’s own good.

  • Save It For The Track

    If the Gti has the electronic park brake abomination that will be a disappointment.

  • Nada

    They better have addressed the DSG seriously… that bloody slippage from 2 to 3 is annoying, not to mention my unfortunate cam shaft replacement after 25K! Out of warranty now, time to change it over.

    • Captain Nemo®™

       Oh no Nada you will be accused of “tales of woe” & lies by the VeeDud fan-boys on this site.  Can’t speak the truth about a problem,   Stories of a mate of a mate’s sister’s boy friend will be trundled out how a Polio made it to 100,000 without a problem.

      • Nada

        Don’t get me wrong, I’m a fan of VW, but the problems are clear to me and I’m a bit put off. Not all will experience problems, I’m lucky I guess.

  • Sakdjfhlajdhfladfladf

    I think interior is one of the best in class. Looks simply, modern, but  quite premium considering the class of this car. Love the piano black colour scheme. Exterior seems a bit more Polo influenced. Though, it could be argued that the Polo was influenced by the Mk6 Golf. But, I think this takes a few more ques from the Polo whereas the Polo didn’t take as many from the Mk6 Golf. Looks classier than previous model though, however a it too conservative from some angles, looks a bit boring. Looks good overall though. I know this is a Golf article, but Honda’s 9th Gen Civic wasn’t a very good execution of “evolutionary” design. This is a good example of a well executed evolutionary design. Honda should learn a few things from Volkswagen.

  • Galaxy

    Perception is reality:  Is the Golf a premium car?  Is the Golf unreliable? Is the Golf a good car?  It takes years to change consumer perception. If VW stuffed up with reliability, that’s something they now need to work on. If all issues are solved in Ver7.0, it will still take time for reality to become perception.

  • MangeRover

    Lets hope the dual mass flywheel and the timing belts don’t have to be replaced as often on the Mk7. 

    • Luke Brinsmead

      The 1.2 and 1.4 TSI have timing chains, not belts, so less maintenance costs. 

      • Legnab

        Correct as does the std GTI .

  • Al

    Nice interior but the V40 looks a bit more exciting. Will be interesting to see which one drives better. 

    • Luke Brinsmead

      Yeah but there is a big price difference between the two.

  • Phillo

    The interior is a nice step forward to add more flair to what was austere and quite dull. No doubt the quality is still class-leading.

    Disappointed with the exterior though. I get the subtle evolution, but I think the front end look is fussy and the overall design doesn’t feel as fresh as from Mk.V to VI

  • Vins

    The rear quarter looks more like Mk V

  • twincharger

    Fair comment to say the Rolf has been the industry leader for a long time in the hatchback world.The range is so large,there is a Rolf for everybody.
    Parked next to a Hyundai i30,the Rolf looks dated in exterior styling.For VW to continue its growth in Australia,capped priced service is a must.

    • Legnab

      Service is annual 15,000 km no big deal at $300+ or less at specialist , cant afford it, dont buy it , looks sharp against starwars i30 which will date very quickly aka i45 which looks pretty average against the comp.

  • Rosh

    Looks different, but doesnt look newer

  • Poison_Eagle

    Its not a very interesting design but it will be a high quality car. I’ve gotta say though, the interioer isn’t the leap forward the MkVI was over the MkV.  Complex drivetrains seem like a nightmare post-warranty- is this the case? 
    Either way I respect it. 

  • Guest

    New A-Class looks cooler

  • Jeffreyblackney

    Too predictable

  • Liam

    The german cars are becoming das bland and efficient, not exciting to drive.

  • IloveVW

    Really can’t wait for the GTI and R now, in 2 years time I should have enough for at least a GTI.

  • Hafizur

    bond….James bond. one of the best cars in the world….dead sexy.

  • Anthony Mindel

    Lets hope that the quality goes BACK to the Gilf 4 days regarding the interior,as rattles and aqueeks are very common on most Golf 5 and 6 models,which does not reflect on good build quality,and until they get this correct,I will NOT buy another VW,as way too annoying .

    • Sam

       I’ve had a Mk6 TSI for 3 1/2 years, done 62000 kms, and still none of the squeeks and rattles that you speak of, and the motor has been brilliant. Not one complaint from me.

      • Golfschwein

        Nor me with my Mk V. It had just one diesel vibe-induced harmonic in the sunglasses holder when stationery, and only when it contained the specs. The specs themselves were the noise, the harmonic was what caused it. 

        Elsewhere, it was as tight as brand new until the day I sold it with 103,000 on the clock.

        • Legnab

          Agreed no rattles just squeeky door rubbers solved that pretty quick .

    • Luke Brinsmead

      I have an annoying periodic rattle in mine coming from the centre console, it started shortly after my wife drove over a kerb when see was learning to drive :-/

  • 12INCHER

    Internet nerd’s rejoice, your updated chariot has arrived, nothing else matters, no other can come close to the almighty Golfenhousen.

    • Gtr-xu1

      Like youself just don’t rate the GOlf at all.There unreliable,fall to bits,driven by testosterone deficient geezers….

      • Golfschwein

        Maybe you could get yourself one in pink, like the GTR-XU1s were availa….HANG ON!!! THAT’S YOUR NAME!!!!

        • Legnab

          Torana pile of rubbish even back then , probably the 4cylinder tiddler with XU1 badges , maybe add a vauxhaul badge as well .

    • Luke Brinsmead

      Europe’s most popular car, there’s some reasoning behind it.

      • 12INCHER

         Yeah its cheap to run over there. Sniffs the petrol. If petrol was 80c a litre in Europe do you think it would be as popular? hahahah don’t think so. It’s the Barina of Europe.

        • Luke Brinsmead

          Sizes of families, car spaces and roads of different countries also have a major influence on car size and shape, not just the price of fuel.

  • Keejoonc

    Doesn’t look very different to current model at all both inside and out. Inside, they just put more cheap looking silver plastic. Can’t stand cheap silver plastic interior on any car.

  • Gtr-xu1

    My biggest consern about new golf is the lack of changes from the previous model.ALlmost like a series 6 upgrade…..BIG fail .;

  • Raymondkokh

    any one knows where the golf 7 is assembled? Germany? Thanks