Mainstream models, including the Volkswagen Beetle and Jetta, will come standard with a 5-inch touchscreen. Car shoppers have the option of upgrading to a 6.5-inch touchscreen for the Golf family or a 6.3-inch screen for all other VW models.
Standard features with the base infotainment system include a rearview camera, Bluetooth technology and a USB multimedia interface with Apple iPhone and iPod compatibility. The latter is significant, as VW previously used a proprietary cable instead of a USB port, as is the standard throughout the automotive industry. The upgrade Composition Media touchscreen system available on select trims throughout the VW lineup includes satellite and HD radios, the larger screen size and the enhanced functionality of a capacitive touch sensor (such as those in smartphones) that allows for pinching and swiping motions, as well as faster responses. The top-of-the-line Discover Media unit essentially adds navigation.
For 2016, the Volkswagen e-Golf SEL Premium model will include the Discover Pro unit, which adds an 8.0-inch touchscreen.
Customers purchasing 2016 VW models equipped with the VW Car-Net connectivity system will receive a no-charge, six-month trial. There are several payment options following that period, including one year for $199 and two years for $378.
Volkswagen will announce 2016 model pricing Monday.
VW spokesman Mark Gillies told Edmunds "there isn't really an additional cost" with the upgraded infotainment systems.
"The pricing on most models had been increased slightly as we do every year," he wrote in response to a query Thursday. "But Jetta has been held, despite additional equipment such as standard touchscreen radios on the base model and App Connect and the latest 6.3-inch screens on higher trim levels."
Edmunds says: Technology is a huge driver for many car shoppers, so VW's infotainment upgrades should be welcome news.