2016 Volkswagen Golf GTI Review: Long-term ownership report one

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We put our money where our mouth is and BUY a Volkswagen Golf GTI

At CarAdvice we always talk cars and we always drive cars… but there is one thing we don’t do very often – and that is buy cars.

So as part of the ever-expanding CarAdvice family, we have added a new four-wheeled staff member to our Melbourne team, a 2016 Volkswagen Golf GTI.

Yep. We bought a Golf.

It wasn’t an easy decision to come to either. Like you, we had our parameters that governed the cars we could choose from.

The Melbourne office car needed to be practical, so five-doors was a must. It needed to be fun, because – well, fun! It needed to cost less than $50,000 and importantly, it needed to be something we, as a team, considered to be a car we would recommend to any of our friends and family.

Plus, it needed to be ‘on brand’ and match up well with our Sydney office car, a 2015 Audi S1.

The shortlist was formed. Mini Cooper S, Mercedes-Benz GLA 250 Sport, Skoda Octavia RS… but we settled for the ‘dub as it ticked all the boxes we needed and had the added bonus of being able to answer the burning question of many-a-commenter – what is it like living with the infamous Volkswagen DSG for a sustained period of time.

So our little guy – yet to be named – is pure white with tartan interior, the DSG and the optional Driver Assistance Package ($1000).

We purchased it from a local Volkswagen dealer and have no other secret deals up our sleeve, so will basically own it and service it the same way that anyone else would.

A base-manual GTI costs $40,990 (before options and on-road costs), add $2500 for the DSG and with a bit of negotiation (which included a sweet GTI coffee cup thrown in to the deal), we were out the door (rego, stamp duty, etc.) for $45,000 clear.

The 2016-spec GTI scored a few mild updates including Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration, so we’ll be playing with both these systems and taking note of any future functionality that becomes available.

We opted for the Driver Assistance Package, which includes AEB (Autonomous Emergency Braking), rear cross-traffic alert, blind-spot monitoring, semi-automatic parking, adaptive cruise control and selectable driving modes, as we feel that given the car will spend a lot of time on the road, with a multitude of drivers, these systems could help prevent any incidents – thus protecting CarAdvice staff better in the workplace.

Tartan and white was an easy combo to pick as we all love that iconic GTI interior and white is an excellent base for a branded wrap.

A design is well in the works, which should see the CarAdvice GTI look like no other, so expect to see it rolling orange in a local Melbourne neighbourhood near you soon!

Powered by a 162kW/350Nm 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo, the GTI is still the benchmark hot-hatch, despite some pretty serious competition from its European neighbours.

The nameplate, now in its seventh generation, has always been a stepping stone for enthusiast drivers, working their way up the ranks to loftier M3, AMG and Porsche level goals.

Volkswagen claims a 0-100km/h time of 6.5 seconds, and we’ll be putting this as well as standard quarter-mile and lap-times (around Sandown and Phillip Island) to the test as well.

Given we own the car, we’ll be able to get a little more in-depth with any long-term reliability and running cost concerns, and will share all our experiences with you.

Should you have any questions of the GTI, please don’t hesitate to ask.


2016 Volkswagen Golf GTI

Date purchased: February 2016

Odometer reading: 13km

Travel since previous: N/A

Costs since previous: N/A

Consumption since previous: N/A

Click on the Photos tab for more images by Tom Fraser.