VW Golf 8 launched!
The Volkswagen Golf is arguably one of the most popular and recognisable cars in the world. The family hatchback has been popular since its introduction in 1974, it has become one of the three best selling cars in the world, with 35 million units being produced. And for South Africans, the Golf has an even more important place in our hearts. With the Mark 1 Golf, an icon was born. Even when the Mark 2 was launched, the Mark 1 remained in production, evolving into the CitiGolf, which remained in production up until 2009, seeing it gain popularity amongst small families, students and boy racers alike. In the background, the Mark 3, 4 and 5 all gained popularity amongst those looking for a sophisticated, grownup family hatchback. The most recent version, the Mark 7 was the perfect blend of luxury and practicality, and with added sportiness available in either GTI or R flavours. However, VW has decided its time to update the formula, with the new Golf 8.
With leaks and rumour gaining traction in early 2019, as the Golf 7 (and 7.5), ended the production run, many speculated whether VW would be able to improve on the almost perfect Golf 7. Spy shots that were leaked resulted in mixed reviews, with some curious as to the design language chosen by VW, and others keen to see the new Golf 8 in the flesh. And now, having been launched to the public, we can confidently say the new Golf 8 represents an evolution of the Golf 7 design language, that is much in line with modern trends today.
Based on the revised MQB-2 platform developed by the VW group, which will be shared with products across the brands extensive portfolio. Touted to be more practical, as well as better to drive compared to its predecessor, the most obvious changes occur on the surface, with the revised exterior. The bulk of the changes are obvious at the front and rear ends, with a new, slimmer design of the headlights, featuring a revised daytime running light treatment. The headlights are connected by a rather slim grille, giving the front end of the Golf quite a clean design. The front bumper of the Golf feature air intakes modelled on those found on the 7.5 GTI, however with a rounded, less angular look, and with body colour, horizontal blades on the outer edges.
The side profile of the Golf remains largely the same, with strong shoulder lines running the length of the body. At the rear, we find more subtle changes. We now find slim, almost p-shaped taillights, which are an evolution of those found on the outgoing Golf. The rear features a boot lid spoiler, as well as a new bumper with more angular lines running across it. A new Diffuser with chrome tipped “tailpipes” also features, on what will most likely b the R-Line model.
Moving onto the interior, we find a new sea of changes. The Golf has always been famed for its upmarket, sophisticated interior, and with the Mark 8, its no different. The steering wheel has been redesigned, with a more octagonal centre. The steering wheel features controls for the updated Active Info Display (which will likely be optional), as well as controls for the media, as well as the cruise control (which will likely feature an adaptive version as an option).
Behind the wheel sits an updated Active Info Display, which will feature better graphics, and more configurability for the display. The driver will be able to view vehicle settings, satellite navigation, as well as any optional safety features such as lane keep assist. The second biggest change is with the infotainment screen, which now sits perched on the dash, a la-A Class. The touchscreen infotainment screen will most likely been an update version of the one found in the outgoing 7.5 Golf, with a large display, smartphone mirroring, as well as features such as satellite navigation, as well as the ability to configure ambient lighting.
The rest of the interior feature’s new switchgear for the climate control, shortcuts for the infotainment screen, as well as new locations for things such as USB inputs. A new gear lever is available for both the manual and automatic variants, with the automatic “lever” almost being borrowed as is from the new Porsche 911. Interest bit of parts sharing. Based on our recent experience with the outgoing Golf 7.5 GTI, we can confidently say that the rest of the interior should feature soft touch materials, which make the interior a comfortable environment to be in. And although we drove the GTI, the Golf 8 will likely be just as great to drive, with comfort being the main focus for the run-of the mill models.
from launch the mark 8 golf will be offered with a choice of three mild hybrid engines, A 1.0 litres or 1.5 litre engine which is coupled to 48 volts power supply,
Expect pricing to be around 10-20% more than the current Golf, model for model, and of course specifications dependant, although Volkswagon SA has yet to release local pricing.