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The facelifted 2017 Volkswagen Golf 7.5 has been revealed overnight, accompanied by the bold declaration that it is the “most technically sophisticated affordable car yet seen”.

Due in Australia from the middle of 2017, the popular hatch sees the addition of numerous tech and safety features intended to keep it one or two steps ahead of the small-car pack.

Changes to exterior styling are, as expected, subtle. There’s new bumpers at both ends, lightly revised front and rear lighting internals – including new signature LED daytime running lights – along with new wheel designs and an updated grille.

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In the cabin, Volkswagen’s Active Info digital instrument cluster (similar to Audi’s Virtual Cockpit) makes its Golf debut in a big 12.3-inch form behind the steering wheel, while bigger new infotainment screens ranging up to 9.2 inches will be offered across the range.

Gesture control will also feature, along with compatibility with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto (again). Automatic accident notification will also be offered (although not confirmed for the Australian market), sending information to emergency services.

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Driving aids will include Traffic Jam Assist, Lane Assist with active cruise control, and a system designed to detect if the driver has become incapacitated. In that event, the vehicle will slow and steer itself to the side of the road.

MORE: 2017 Golf: What’s changed? New tech detailed

Powertrains include the company’s new 110kW/250Nm “1.5 TSI Evo” engine, replacing the entry-level 1.4-litre 92kW/200Nm unit of the current range.

A lower-powered BlueMotion version, focused on frugality, will also be offered in some markets – but likely not Australia.

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And, although not confirmed, A new full-electric e-Golf is also expected, with a 100kW motor expected to replace the 85kW/270Nm of the current motor.

Likewise, a new 300-kilometre driving range is expected to outdo the 190km of the current e-Golf.

Interestingly, perhaps not surprising but nonetheless regrettably, Volkswagen has made no mention yet of the diesel engines that will be offered with the so-called ‘7.5’ update.

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The Golf GTI hot hatch also receives a small power bump, getting the 169kW/350Nm version of the 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine that was once reserved only for the GTI Performance variant.

Local pricing and specifications are yet to be finalised, though the German car maker’s local arm says it is “working hard” on bringing the plug-in hybrid (PHEV) Golf GTE variant to Australia.

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However, if introduced, the GTE would be offered later in the Golf 7.5’s lifecycle.

The facelifted Golf range, including the hatch, wagon and Alltrack variants, arrive mid-2017 ahead of the refreshed GTI and R hot hatches in the third quarter.

MORE: 2017 Golf: What’s changed? New tech detailed
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