My little TDI has a secret. It drives like a sports car and gets 40 real world mpg. I usually get tired of new cars fast. I didnt want to give up my 3 series, but I had to..-$ On the bright side, I love this car. It handles very well, has great seats, outstanding steering feel, plenty of grip and 236 ft lbs RIGHT NOW, its sooo entertaining. For my 35 mile one way commute, I can't imagine a better car. I was afraid I would miss my bimmer and I do... a little. But this car makes driving fun the way no japanese car can. My only criticism is that 1st gear is short and not very usable. This car is quicker than the numbers say once you get out of 1st, HEHE.
I bought this car with a six speed stick shift. I could not get used to the clutch, and sadly I returned it a week later. I test drove the VW and the Mini Cooper at the same time. Over all the VW had the mini beat on standard features, and comfort. The stick on the VW shifts like butter while the Mini seemed notchy. The mini cooper had a feature that the VW TDI absolutely needs! Hill Hold Brake Assist! This feature is only available on the Passat. If Mini can do this for $21000, then VW should be able to for $23K. The TDI is very easy to stall on hills due to the clutch, and low RPMs. My dealer let me trade the Golf TDI for a Jetta TDI with the dsg.
Standard Features. Bluetooth, Sirius Sat, Smooth Shifting Gear Box. Sport seats, 17" wheels, sport suspension. Comfort, handling, performance. Character! It is essentially the GTI with a Diesel engine. Gas Mileage. I averaged 34 City.
The clutch! Add the hill hold brake assist feature as standard. This car absolutely needs it. RPM's drop too low on hills, and the car is too easy to stall.
Test Drove Mini Cooper, VW Golf TDI, and Jetta TDI. I bought the Golf TDI with the six speed, and returned it a week later for a Jetta TDI with the DSG. Loved everything about the Golf except for the clutch. The RPM's drop so low when starting that the car is easy to stall on mild hills. Hill hold brake assist would really make the car an absolute perfect car to drive. This feature is standard in the Mini Cooper. If mini can do it for $21K, then I think VW can do it in all of their cars. Hill hold is only available in the Pasaat. Other than the clutch, the performance, comfort, and styling were amazing. Essentially it is the GTI with a diesel engine!
Styling, performance, handling. Standard features are amazing! Sat radio, lowered suspension, sport seats. VW's six speed shifts with no effort. In the corners the car sticks. No lean, and no diving when you hit the brakes.
Clutch! Make hill hold brake assist a feature on this car. The diesel engine is too easy to stall on a mild incline. On wet,snowy or iced roads the car would be a monster to handle.
My dad's first car was a 1983 Volkswagen Rabbit GTI that he still drives and it still runs great, so I knew exactly what I wanted when I was looking for my first car (GTI was my first choice, but a little pricey :/). First time manual driver, but the car is so forgiving and so fun once I figured it out. I test drove the Fit, Fiesta, Sonata, Focus, Nissan Versa, and Fusion. No other car in this price range even came close. You just can't beat the styling and drive of a German car. Has tons of room for the rear seats, drives solidly and quietly at 80+ on the highway, and also is really maneuverable in city traffic. I'm getting about 33 mpg driving on highways about 70% of the time.
Heated seats, Bluetooth, lane change signals, manual transmission (the manuals on comparable cars weren't great), styling of the car both inside and out, and lots of room for such a small-looking car. It's a car that I know I'll have for a long long time and it'll still look great 20 years from now.
Gas mileage is a little on the low side for comparable vehicles. One bigger cupholder in the front would be nice, since I have to reach around to put my coffee in the rear center cupholder. The option of alloy wheels on the 2.5L would be nice.
Was in market for a bit 'more' than a Civic or Corolla (last car I owned). The Golf seems more solid, quiet, smooth, I mean it's very smooth, no engine vibration. Seats are firm, handling is good, but, if you really push it, you will want the GTI - which I considered, but wanted the TDI (for the mileage). I am getting 44.1 mpg (so far), city/highway. Had minor problem with oil leak - dealer said bad O-ring on intercooler. Had to wait 2 days for part, but dealer set me up with (free) loaner. Not all bad I guess. This car is FUN to drive. Hit the radio, open the sunroof, and Drive! It simply has a much better driving feel when compared to similar cars, and the 6 speed manual is VERY smooth!!
6 speed manual transmission, tires, bluetooth, radio, MP3 cable (this allows you to control your iPod with the controls on the car so you don't have to dig for your iPod when driving), clean/simple instrumentation, torque, leather- wrapped and smaller size steering wheel, very quiet interior.
Other interior colors (other than black), a detent position (to denote closed) on the sunroof dial, have either bigger or brighter ink on the icons used to label the vent positions as the dial kind of hides the icons when viewed from driver seat.