VW SportWagen test drive

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 Yes, I finally got to drive a modern wagon.

We really don’t have a lot of choices here in the US. The wagon version of the Golf is one of the rare affordable wagon we get over here.
(I guess the Outback is a wagon. In a raised up fake SUV way.)
The others from Mercedes, Volvo and BMW are obviously much more expensive.

The Golf looks fine as a wagon.
My test car was a base S model, and I do think the more expensive versions look nicer with their larger wheels.
(The  Alltrack version also looks great.)

 Inside, it is the same as the regular Golf. Which is a good thing.
It means great materials. Everything feels super solid and well put together.
This is really about as good as some Audi models.

 For once, the brushed metal finish looks great. Also much better in real life than on most official VW pictures I have seen, where is seems to be really light.

It is actually a bit darker. I still prefer the piano black finish, but that seems to be only available in the more expensive SEL version.

 Being a base  model, (But with the 4 Motion AWD system. And automatic.)
my test car had cloth seats. Which I actually like.
The seats are very comfortable and supportive.

All the controls feel great. And the “base” 8 speaker stereo sounds really good. Of course not as great as the amazing Fender system, but still one of the best standard system out there.

 The back seat has plenty of room. Although not as much as in the Jetta. (The current Golf and Jetta are not based on the same platform.)

But no one should complain. There is more room back there than in most luxury sport sedans.

 Of course, the main selling point of this is the huge trunk.
As you can see, I was able to put a bicycle in the back.

The 1.8 Liter engine is always good.
There is always plenty of power, and it feels smoother and quieter than the larger 2.0 Liter.
The 6 speed auto is also great. Downshifting very fast at the slightest demand.

Gas mileage is rated at 22/30.
And just like with any other VW, the actual numbers are much higher.
I had no problem getting 26/27 around town. And about 40 on the HWY.

The steering is excellent and very precise.
And the ride is always very smooth and solid.

This really has a great German car/upscale  feel. At a very reasonable price.
The base S wagon starts at $21 580. Which is pretty great.
My test car was $25 750 including Automatic, AWD and destination.

Where I live, I have no use for AWD.
So my choice would be the mid level SE model for about $27 000.
Which includes the great panoramic glass roof and the fantastic Fender stereo. As well as larger wheels, keyless start and more.
(As a matter of fact, the SE is about $1500 under sticker at Carsdirect.)
You can check out the other models right.

I think the Golf is a great choice in general . But the wagon version adds a huge truck for just a bit more money.
You could actually sleep in it! Which makes it a fantastic road trip car.
One that easily gets 40MPG on the FWY!

Here is the whole story on the car I had for a week.

Conversation 8 comments

  1. I like your reviews, they are badly written but don,t focus on the PR stuff other publications do.
    HOWEVER: haven't we read enough tests for Golfs and Jettas? Seems like a lot of interest for uninteresting cars.

  2. There is a lot to like about this car but the deal-breaker for me is the VW badge affixed to the car and the company behind it.

  3. Thanks for your review.
    I'm surprised you like it so much.
    But it is good to know when you find something good, you can write about it without awkward excuses.
    Some people just hate.

    I visit your blog everyday!

  4. Vince, you didn't like the DSG automatic in the GTI that you reviewed not too long ago. You seem to love this one. What's different about this DSG that you like?

  5. the writer's opinions come from way out of left field. i seriously question his taste in pretty much all things

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