2017 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack
- It's a wagon with light-duty off-road capability
- Crossover-rivaling cargo bay
- User-friendly control layout
- Turbo four-cylinder engine is refined and reasonably capable
- Automatic transmission sometimes slow to shift in low-speed driving
- Touchscreen's simple graphics feel behind the times
- Relatively snug backseat
Which Golf Alltrack does Edmunds recommend?
The base model comes well-equipped, but we'd get an SE with the Driver Assist package. That brings a panoramic sunroof, adaptive cruise control, automatic emergency braking and even a self-parking system. In early 2017, you can also get an Alltrack SE with a manual transmission.
The manual is great news, of course, for those who enjoy shifting their own gears. The bad news? You can't get the manual on the loaded SEL trim. Still, we're glad VW took the time to throw its stick-shift loyalists a bone, and the SE is nicely outfitted in its own right.
Edmunds' Expert Review
The 2017 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack provides familiar Golf goodness along with all-wheel drive, rugged styling and a cavernous cargo area. It's a compelling alternative to similarly priced crossovers. If you like the idea of a Golf wagon but want more of an SUV vibe, this is your option.
The formula is simple: Take the regular Golf wagon (aka the SportWagen), give it all-wheel drive, a slightly raised suspension for extra ground clearance, and a few traction-enhancing features, and wrap it all up in some tough-looking body cladding. The result is an all-terrain wagon with 66.5 cubic feet of space to carry stuff with the rear seats folded. That's the kind of space usually afforded by compact crossover SUVs. Factor in the Alltrack's smooth turbocharged four-cylinder engine and ergonomically sound interior, and you're looking at an excellent choice for the crossover-averse or anyone who just prefers the sleeker wagon look.
2017 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack configurations
The 2017 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack comes in three trim levels: S, SE and SEL. The base S is actually pretty well-equipped and offers most all you need if you're just seeking good adventure-life wheels, including roof rails, heated seats and side mirrors, a rearview camera, Bluetooth and smartphone integration. Stepping up to the SE brings a big sunroof, keyless entry and ignition, and a better sound system. Meanwhile, the SEL dials it up with nicer wheels, power seats and a navigation system.
The base S starts with a turbocharged 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine (170 horsepower, 199 pound-feet of torque) and a six-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission, dubbed DSG in Volkswagen-speak. Purists can raise a cheer: A six-speed manual transmission will also be available starting in early 2017. Regardless of transmission, power reaches all four wheels through the 4Motion all-wheel-drive system.
Standard features include 15-inch alloy wheels, foglights, LED daytime running lights, power-adjustable and heated side mirrors, silver roof rails, air-conditioning, cruise control, power windows and locks, a leather-trimmed tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, synthetic leather upholstery, heated front seats with manual adjustment and power recline, 60/40-split folding rear seats with a center pass-through, and ambient cabin lighting.
Also standard are a rearview camera, a 6.5-inch touchscreen infotainment display, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, VW's Car-Net App-Connect smartphone integration and Car-Net Security and Service telematics, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The base audio system includes eight speakers, a CD player, satellite and HD radio, and auxiliary audio, USB and SD card inputs.
Options include the Driver Assist package, which bundles adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning with autonomous emergency braking, front and rear parking sensors, and steering guidance for parallel and perpendicular parking.
Moving up to the SE adds automatic headlights, automatic wipers, heated windshield washer nozzles, a panoramic sunroof, keyless entry and ignition, a 115-volt outlet in the cargo area, and a Fender Premium audio system (adds a subwoofer and upgraded sound). The Driver Assist package and a manual transmission are also optional.
The top-level SEL builds on SE features with 18-inch alloy wheels, automatic dual-zone climate control, a 12-way power driver seat, and upgraded infotainment with touchscreen navigation. A Driver Assistance and Lighting package is optional and includes that same features as the Driver Assist package as well as adaptive xenon headlights that bend in the direction of the car's turn and automatic high beams.
Noise & vibration
Ease of use
Getting in/getting out
Audio & navigation
Most helpful consumer reviews
Features & Specs
Our experts’ favorite Golf Alltrack safety features:
- Automatic Post-Collision Braking System
- Applies the brakes immediately after a collision to stop movement and avoid a secondary impact.
- Family Guardian
- Enables you to set speed and other boundaries for new drivers. A component of the Car-Net Security & Service.
- Forward Collision Warning
- Issues visual and aural alerts if a collision seems likely. Applies brakes autonomously if necessary to mitigate impact.
The 2017 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack isn't quite an SUV, and it's not quite an ordinary wagon; it sits somewhere in the middle — quite literally, if you use a tape measure. Based on the Golf SportWagen, the Alltrack features all-wheel drive, a raised suspension that gives it extra ground clearance, and extra-rugged styling, yet it maintains its long, low wagon shape. It's a compelling alternative to SUVs and crossovers in the same price range.
The Alltrack is based on the Volkswagen Golf, which, though not a huge seller in North America, is one of the most popular cars in Europe and other markets. We like the Golf for its high-quality, no-nonsense cabin as well as its space and utility. Both of those attributes make their way to the Alltrack. The cabin is roomy up front, offering excellent visibility all around, and the control layout is straightforward and easy to use.
There's a marked difference between the front seats on the base-model S and the power-adjustable chairs offered in the top-of-the-line SEL; the latter offer better bolstering and more support, though both have firm cushions in the Germanic style. Backseat space could better, but in terms of utility, the Volkswagen gives up nothing to rival crossovers: It offers 30.4 cubic feet of storage space behind the rear seats and 66.5 cubic feet with the backseats folded down.
The Golf Alltrack is powered by the same 1.8-liter turbocharged engine found in other Volkswagen vehicles; it produces 170 hp and 199 lb-ft of torque. For the Alltrack, Volkswagen offers either a six-speed manual or a six-speed, dual-clutch automatic, along with the 4Motion all-wheel-drive system used in the high-performance Golf R. We've been satisfied with the amount of thrust this engine produces in other Golf variants, but the Alltrack is heavier and can feel a bit sluggish when accelerating from a stop. The EPA rates the Golf Alltrack at 25 mpg combined (22 city/30 highway).
The Alltrack's tall suspension gives it 6.7 inches of ground clearance, not as much as with some SUV-like wagons but adequate for traversing rocky trails without worrying about the underside of the car. The added height does mean that the Golf Alltrack handles somewhere between an SUV and a car on the road, but that shouldn't put off buyers interested in the Alltrack's off-road capabilities.
Volkswagen sells the Golf Alltrack in S, SE and SEL trim levels. Even the base-model S is surprisingly well equipped, and advanced driver aids such as forward collision avoidance with autonomous braking and adaptive cruise control are on the options list. The SE is a nice package for the money, and the SEL offers several tempting comfort and convenience features. Make sure to check out Edmunds' full review and shopping tools, which will help you find the right 2017 Volkswagen Golf to fit your needs.
2017 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack Overview
The 2017 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack is offered in the following submodels: Golf Alltrack Wagon. Available styles include TSI SE 4dr Wagon AWD (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6AM), TSI S 4dr Wagon AWD (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6AM), TSI SEL 4dr Wagon AWD (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6AM), TSI S 4dr Wagon AWD (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6M), and TSI SE 4dr Wagon AWD (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6M).
What do people think of the 2017 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack?
Consumer ratings and reviews are also available for the 2017 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack and all its trim types. Overall, Edmunds users rate the 2017 Golf Alltrack 4.5 on a scale of 1 to 5 stars. Edmunds consumer reviews allow users to sift through aggregated consumer reviews to understand what other drivers are saying about any vehicle in our database. Detailed rating breakdowns (including performance, comfort, value, interior, exterior design, build quality, and reliability) are available as well to provide shoppers with a comprehensive understanding of why customers like the 2017 Golf Alltrack.
Edmunds Expert Reviews
Edmunds experts have compiled a robust series of ratings and reviews for the 2017 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack and all model years in our database. Our rich content includes expert reviews and recommendations for the 2017 Golf Alltrack featuring deep dives into trim levels and features, performance, mpg, safety, interior, and driving. Edmunds also offers expert ratings, road test and performance data, long-term road tests, first-drive reviews, video reviews and more.
Our Review Process
This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.
We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.
Which 2017 Volkswagen Golf Alltracks are available in my area?
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Why trust Edmunds?
Edmunds has deep data on over 6 million new, used, and certified pre-owned vehicles, including rich, trim-level features and specs information like: MSRP, average price paid, warranty information (basic, drivetrain, and maintenance), features (upholstery, bluetooth, navigation, heated seating, cooled seating, cruise control, parking assistance, keyless ignition, satellite radio, folding rears seats ,run flat tires, wheel type, tire size, wheel tire, sunroof, etc.), vehicle specifications (engine cylinder count, drivetrain, engine power, engine torque, engine displacement, transmission), fuel economy (city, highway, combined, fuel capacity, range), vehicle dimensions (length, width, seating capacity, cargo space), car safety, true cost to own. Edmunds also provides tools to allow shopper to compare vehicles to similar models of their choosing by warranty, interior features, exterior features, specifications, fuel economy, vehicle dimensions, consumer rating, edmunds rating, and color.
Should I lease or buy a 2017 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack?
Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.
Check out Volkswagen lease specials