Volkswagen Golf SE 1.4 TSI

 

You can always tell when there’s a new Golf on the block - err, no, actually you can’t.

Spotting the next Mark Golf from the previous is a bit like one of those puzzle games we used to do as children; you know the two pictures look almost identical at a glance but you are urged to spot ten differences anyway.

Well, I can’t promise to find ten on the new Golf but the front lights do look a bit different and so do the rear. Well that’s two then and no prize for me.

A casual glimpse of the "new" Golf and it couldn’t be anything else could it. It seems odd to go to the trouble of reinventing the wheel only for it to look like the wheel - but that’s what you have got with the Golf.

But we shouldn’t be too harsh or critical of its evolution as the model still sells by the bucket load whatever Mark is on the logbook.

It may have inherited the new corporate nose, lifted off the face of the Sirocco and rear lamps that ape the Tiguan, but it remains very much the same.

Conservative - with a small c - buyers will love it and it’s a look that will never date, whereas more radical designs tend to. Some would say it's a classic shape that reflects the model’s heritage of being the hatchback to start all hatchbacks. Others might simply nod off and buy something more exciting.

It gets away with its comprehensive but safe redesign only because it is so good to drive. Now forget the look and forget the Golf's functional frill-free interior. It may not inspire but it all works very nicely and feels it will last forever.

The true triumph comes in the technology. New Golf is supremely able and drives considerably better than its dowdy appearance suggests.

The TSI packs a modest 1.4 litre petrol engine easily capable of returning 40+ miles per gallon. But bolted somewhere under the bonnet is a natty turbocharger which boosts power and torque across the rev range.

It means TSI is extremely sporty to drive and very quick. The 122PS doesn’t sound a lot but it certainly feels way more than adequate. What you have is a Golf GTI in the making, albeit one that is much more affordable to buy, run, tax and insure.

Levels of refinement are also off the scale. It is just incredibly smooth whatever revs are showing on the familiar clocks.

And the ride is truly brilliant blending perfectly the need for tautness with bone-cosseting comfort. It also handles like a dream and the brakes, six speed gearbox and steering are perfect partners for the willing motor.

The new Golf really should not be judged by the dust cover which protects some significant leaps in technology which make the VW a fresh and enjoyable experience to drive.

Car Facts

Model: VW Golf TSI

Engine: 1.4 litre, turbo-charged four cylinder petrol

Drivetrain: Six speed manual

Power: 122PS

Top speed: 124 mph

0-60mph: 9.5 secs

Insurance group: 7

Miles per gallon (combined): 45.6

CO2 (g/km): 144

Price: from £15,962.00

News
A boy holds a chick during the Russian National Agricultural Exhibition Golden Autumn 2014 in Moscow on October 9, 2014.
news
Life and Style
love + sex
Arts and Entertainment
Victoria Wood, Kayvan Novak, Alexa Chung, Chris Moyles
tvReview: No soggy bottoms, but plenty of other baking disasters on The Great Comic Relief Bake Off
Sport
Ashley Young celebrates the winner for Manchester United against Newcastle
footballNewcastle 0 Man United 1: Last minute strike seals precious victory
Life and Style
Tikka Masala has been overtaken by Jalfrezi as the nation's most popular curry
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
Seth Rogan is one of America’s most famous pot smokers
filmAmy Pascal resigned after her personal emails were leaked following a cyber-attack sparked by the actor's film The Interview
News
Benjamin Netanyahu and his cartoon bomb – the Israeli PM shows his ‘evidence’
people
Arts and Entertainment
80s trailblazer: comedian Tracey Ullman
tv
News
i100
Life and Style
A statue of the Flemish geographer Gerard Kremer, Geradus Mercator (1512 - 1594) which was unveiled at the Geographical Congree at Anvers. He was the first person to use the word atlas to describe a book of maps.
techThe 16th century cartographer created the atlas
Arts and Entertainment
Stephen Tompkinson is back as DCI Banks
tvReview: Episode one of the new series played it safe, but at least this drama has a winning formula
News
i100
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Recruitment Genius: UI / UX Designer

    £25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This firm are focussed on assis...

    Recruitment Genius: General Processor

    £7 per hour: Recruitment Genius: A vacancy has arisen for a General Processor ...

    Recruitment Genius: Outbound Sales Executive - B2B

    £18000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A great opportunity has arisen ...

    Recruitment Genius: Online Sales and Customer Services Associate

    £14000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Full time and Part time positio...

    Day In a Page

    War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

    Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

    Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable
    Living with Alzheimer's: What is it really like to be diagnosed with early-onset dementia?

    What is it like to live with Alzheimer's?

    Depicting early-onset Alzheimer's, the film 'Still Alice' had a profound effect on Joy Watson, who lives with the illness. She tells Kate Hilpern how she's coped with the diagnosis
    The Internet of Things: Meet the British salesman who gave real-world items a virtual life

    Setting in motion the Internet of Things

    British salesman Kevin Ashton gave real-world items a virtual life
    Election 2015: Latest polling reveals Tories and Labour on course to win the same number of seats - with the SNP holding the balance of power

    Election 2015: A dead heat between Mr Bean and Dick Dastardly!

    Lord Ashcroft reveals latest polling – and which character voters associate with each leader
    Audiences queue up for 'true stories told live' as cult competition The Moth goes global

    Cult competition The Moth goes global

    The non-profit 'slam storytelling' competition was founded in 1997 by the novelist George Dawes Green and has seen Malcolm Gladwell, Salman Rushdie and Molly Ringwald all take their turn at the mic
    Pakistani women come out fighting: A hard-hitting play focuses on female Muslim boxers

    Pakistani women come out fighting

    Hard-hitting new play 'No Guts, No Heart, No Glory' focuses on female Muslim boxers
    Leonora Carrington transcended her stolid background to become an avant garde star

    Surreal deal: Leonora Carrington

    The artist transcended her stolid background to become an avant garde star
    LGBT History Month: Pupils discuss topics from Sappho to same-sex marriage

    Education: LGBT History Month

    Pupils have been discussing topics from Sappho to same-sex marriage
    11 best gel eyeliners

    Go bold this season: 11 best gel eyeliners

    Use an ink pot eyeliner to go bold on the eyes with this season's feline flicked winged liner
    Cricket World Cup 2015: Tournament runs riot to make the event more hit than miss...

    Cricket World Cup runs riot to make the event more hit than miss...

    The tournament has reached its halfway mark and scores of 300 and amazing catches abound. One thing never changes, though – everyone loves beating England
    Katarina Johnson-Thompson: Heptathlete ready to jump at first major title

    Katarina Johnson-Thompson: Ready to jump at first major title

    After her 2014 was ruined by injury, 21-year-old Briton is leading pentathlete going into this week’s European Indoors. Now she intends to turn form into gold
    Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

    Climate change key in Syrian conflict

    And it will trigger more war in future
    How I outwitted the Gestapo

    How I outwitted the Gestapo

    My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
    The nation's favourite animal revealed

    The nation's favourite animal revealed

    Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
    Is this the way to get young people to vote?

    Getting young people to vote

    From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot