2015 Volkswagen Golf GTI: Highly Recommended
January 6, 2015
A few days ago, I was talking with a friend of mine who's been thinking about buying a new car. Actually, he's been thinking for months now, and I've heard his whole thought process during that time that has run the gamut from a Honda CR-V to a used Jeep Wrangler to a brand new luxury sport sedan like the BMW 3 Series or Lexus IS 350.
Anyway, I think he's finally getting closer to the point when he's going to buy a car to replace his old Lexus IS. That sense of urgency could also have something to do with the fact that he and his wife just had their first child. He's got a lot to think about. So I simplified it for him. I said, "Just buy a 2015 Volkswagen Golf GTI."
Granted, I'm very fond of our long-term GTI, so I was keen on talking up its virtues. But in a lot of ways it could be an ideal car for him. Similar to what you get from a luxury sport sedan, the GTI is sporty to drive thanks to its punchy turbocharged engine and sharp handling. And it's classy, with upscale interior materials and handsome exterior styling.
Yet there's some practicality here, too, which should appeal to the new dad side of him. The GTI isn't as useful as a small crossover, of course, but its backseat is decently sized and the hatchback design opens up more cargo carrying possibilities than you'd get from a sedan. The GTI is fuel efficient, too, with an EPA-estimated 28 mpg in combined driving.
And here's the best part: With the $10,000 or more he'd save on buying a GTI instead of a BMW 3 Series or Lexus IS 350, he'd have enough to buy that used Jeep Wrangler he wants, too. Now that was an eye-opener for him. (I just didn't have the heart to tell him that he'd probably just have to spend that money on diapers and college funds instead.)
I'm curious to learn what he's going to get. But I'll be pretty excited if he goes with a new GTI.
Brent Romans, Senior Automotive Editor