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VW Golf Test Drive Review

Date: 16 November 2015

VW has introduced R-line spec on its frugal but nippy turbocharged 1.4-litre petrol Golf, as well as the 150hp diesel, boasting the styling of sportier Golfs, without the emissions, consumption or higher tax liability.

R-line trim includes 17-inch alloys, sporty styling details, and sports seats along with the kit high-spec GT models get, such as satnav, front and rear parking sensors, auto headlights and windscreen wipers, and lowered sports suspension.

Why is it interesting?

This petrol motor provides strong performance - powering the Golf to 62mph in a brief 8.2 seconds - high refinement levels and impressively low emissions of 115g/km, along with 58.9mpg economy. R-line trim now gives this Golf added visual menace, making it a savvy choice for fleet users seeking a sporty-looking machine that doesn't cost too much to run in leasing costs or BIK charges.

How are the running costs?

This Golf's high list price inflates costs to 55.3p per mile - more than the 52.5p needed for an equivalent Audi A3, which shares the same engine - partly thanks to the Audi's stronger residual values. The closely related Seat Leon 1.4 TSI 150 FR Technology is much better value too, at 48.6p per mile, while BMW, Ford and Vauxhall rivals also undercut it, making them more obvious choices for business users.

Any other business?

R-line trim only adds different alloy wheels, upholstery, interior trim and a body kit over GT models for a 1.9p per mile premium. Despite an additional 25hp, the 150hp turbocharged 1.4-litre engine in the Golf offers greater claimed economy than the 125hp version as it can shut down two of its cylinders under gentle driving.


Great engine and high quality interior are marred by expensive R-line trim