Long Term Diary
In this long term review, I will be updating this diary on a monthly basis for the next 3 months. Therefore, be sure to check back in for the latest monthly updates!
The gleaming white VW Golf GTI enters our long term garage with 27km on the clock. It’s a handsome looking hatchback, albeit being a tad too restrained for a sports hatch. This is however, rectified to a certain degree by the GTI’s trademark ‘telephone dial’ 18” Detroits alloy wheels.
Inside, the GTI is all class. Fit and finish of the dashboard and door panels are first rate, with exemplary visual and tactile sensation. The chunky, flat-bottomed sports steering wheels wouldn’t look out of place in a $400,000 supercar either. All controls fall nicely to hand and have a solid and quality feel to them.
The standard RCD510 6.5” high resolution touch screen infotainment system is both intuitively easy to use and classy to look at. It can be connected to a USB stick or Ipod via Volkswagen’s Media Device Interface (MDI). There is also an SD card slot, which works brilliantly and an AUX-In 3.5mm socket in the armrest. The standard Premium Bluetooth kit fully integrates with the system, allowing full visiblity of contacts lists, on-screen speed-dials, easy change from phone to phone.
The car also comes equipped with a Reverse Camera (optional), cleverly hidden under the VW badge, which incidentally also functions as a latch to open the hatch. The image is displayed on said touch screen with static guidelines to help with those tricky parking spots.
One other notable feature is the optional adaptive front headlight system that comes with the bi-xenon headlights. The headlights swivel upto 15 degress (the side where the car is turning) in the direction where the car is turning to light up the bend ahead. Very handy on country roads where there are no street lights. This option also brings very distinctive LED Daytime Running Lights that are unique to the GTI.
First impression is good so far. This car has more customisable settings than your average smart phone, from the way the side mirrors adjust to how the car unlocks! You can literally spend hours sitting in the car going through the voluminous menus.
Like most user manuals though, the one that comes with the GTI is full of information but are hard to find and sometimes, downright confusing.
Even with its new engine which is still quite tight, the GTI dispatches its power without much hesitation. The 280Nm of torque is available from just 1,700rpm which makes city driving and overtaking an effortless exercise.
Turbo lag is only noticeable if you start of gently and then decide to give it the prod. Otherwise, power delivery is smooth and this will only get better as the drivetrain beds in.
Fuel consumption this week averaged about 10.2l/100km on mostly city driving. Again, I expect this to improve over time.
Visit > Volkswagen Australia
Car reviewed is based on Australian Specified model and may differ to that available in your country of residence.