Put your hands up if you’re tired of the word ‘lifestyle’. Put your hand up if the thought of adrenaline junkies throwing themselves off mountains, while simultaneously BMX’ing, skateboarding and windsurfing themselves to a futile death wears you out.

These lunatics have no place in the business world, but the marketers love them and what the marketers want they inevitably get.


It’s the reason Volkswagen, for example, has been too busy developing other more adventurous models rather than wheel out an estate version of the Golf hatch that landed three years ago.

It’s a late but welcome visitor. VW UK has low sales expectations of only 2800 vehicles in the first year, but the biggest demand will be business, expected to take more than 65% of sales.

Designers haven’t been tempted to push the style envelope – like the hatch, it’s all very conservative with curiously what looks like a pair of last-generation Honda Legend lamps slapped on its rump.

Engine wise, only a sole 105PS 1.6 petrol will be imported, flanked by a 105PS 1.9 and 140PS 2.0 diesels that will account for 88% of the mix.

We focused on the relaxed 1.9-litre diesel. It makes a good job of shifting the extra weight and promises to average over 54mpg on the combined cycle while slotting into the 18% BIK grouping.

The drive remains close to the hatch: there has been no cost saving here with the estate receiving the same rear multi-link suspension that provides for precise handling. The estate can even boast a respectable payload of 630kg and a huge boot that, with seats up, swallows over 500 litres of gear – ideal for those who need a car to do both van and family duties.

Running costs are yet to be announced, but VW is confident the estate would mimic the hatch by offering fine residuals, with the knock-on of low running costs that could come close to class best. Otherwise the estate is an honest capable load-lugger, with not a surfboard in sight.