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Used 2018 Volkswagen Golf R 2.0T w/DCC and Navigation Hatchback Review

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2018 Volkswagen Golf R 2.0T w/DCC and Navigation Hatchback.

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5.0 out of 5 stars
3 reviews

Most helpful consumer reviews

5 out of 5 stars
Pirate Golf: Golf Arrrgh!
2.0T w/DCC and Navigation 4dr Hatchback AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6M)
Context: I am an old guy with an age appropriate wife who can drive stick (priceless!: recommended as part of the pre nup). I live in the snowiest city in the USA. I have owned or leased BMWs and Audis with AWD among others. Many of the cars and the SUV that I have owned or leased have been AWD or 4WD. I have had my Golf R for 8 months and have 7200 miles on the odometer. Unique. … Very easy to drive. Only complaint is ground clearance. This comes into play with the snow drifts that the snow plows leave at the end of my driveway. No issues with driving in snow but I have snow tires on 17 inch rims for the winter. Nice to have multiple driving modes and they seem to be genuinely alter the driving dynamics. Comfortable to be the passenger in any of the seats. My wife hated to ride in the BMWs and found them needlessly difficult to drive. I had to agree. The R is fast without being unruly. Excellent handling with a comfortable ride. But if you value your spine and dental work, avoid the pot holes! This my first car with a touch screen so not an expert but not a fan. I prefer buttons and knobs: you don't have to take your eyes off the road to work them. The touch screen is overly sensitive for my taste since you do not have to actually touch it to activate, getting within an 1/8 of an inch will trigger it. The electronics play nice with my iPhone. Not a big deal for me but that particular feature seems to be the deciding factor for car buying now. Pricey when compared to the base GTI but price difference is small when looking at a GTI with same suite of electronics. A bargain compared to its Audi S3 fraternal twin and trumps it because of available M6. GTI has a very nice ride and handling but the R is radically better. If you cannot afford an R and have to opt for the GTI, do NOT test drive the R. Update 4/7/2020. 14,000 miles. Still runs great. Still lots of fun to drive. Highway 30 mpg. Mixed 24 mpg. Rear brakes needed some attention. The GPS lost connection to the antenna after a commercial car wash, fixed under warranty. No issues on wet or snowy roads. I run snow tires in the winter. I have run 87, 89, 91 and 93 octane. No knocking with the lower grade but noticeable drop in performance. 4/12/2022. 25,000 miles. Front brakes needed attention otherwise no issues. My son just bought from me to replace his aging Audi A4. He has run it in our Buffalo winter and loves it. He notes a considerable improvement in performance but a bit noisier.
5 out of 5 stars
Quick enough!
2.0T w/DCC and Navigation 4dr Hatchback AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6M)
This is a small car. I traded my MB E350 for the Golf R. I wanted a sporty car that could be serviced locally. This car is for people who like to drive rather than sit and aim. It is a high performance car that is totally fun and it is fast. I am just through the 600 mile break in phase and am looking forward to upping the revs. The mileage is about 23 all around but I have not been … concerned. The 13 gallon tank last about 2 week. The most fantastic thing about this car is the electronics and displays. The nav is fully integrated in the touch screen and with gauges in the dash. Make sure you talk to a salesman who knows the car. I have no regrets and do not miss the big Mercedes. Good luck!
5 out of 5 stars
Driver's Car
Luca van Gorkom,08/14/2020
2.0T w/DCC and Navigation 4dr Hatchback AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6M)
This car costs a lot compared to normal golfs. And when you drive it normally it feels like a normal golf. Interior is a bit plasticky and the fabric seats are firm as heck. The leathers are a little better. So not worth the money for that bit alone. However, once you put your foot further than about halfway down the pedal stroke, it opens up a bit and you realise this isn't a normal … golf. In dynamic mode it's incredibly tight around corners, leaps forward at the touch of the throttle, and just eats up back roads. Incredibly fun to drive, however, every other part of it is just a normal golf. Which can be a good thing in certain ways, but not if you compare it to other, better value for money cars, like the Kia Stinger.

Edmunds Summary Review of the 2018 Volkswagen Golf R 2.0T w/DCC and Navigation Hatchback

What’s new

  • Seven-speed automatic transmission
  • Adaptive LED headlights
  • 8-inch touchscreen display
  • Part of the seventh Golf generation introduced for 2015

Pros & Cons

  • Impressive performance from the all-wheel-drive system
  • Great handling without sacrificing ride quality
  • Interior is well-built with excellent materials
  • Accommodating and flexible cargo space
  • Outstanding performance aside, hard to justify the lofty sticker price

Which Golf R does Edmunds recommend?

There's only one Golf R trim level. As such, your choice comes down to picking one of the R's five colors and either the manual transmission or the new dual-clutch automatic. The automatic is the more pragmatic and sensible choice, but you'll have more fun if you choose the manual.

Full Edmunds Review: 2018 Volkswagen Golf R Hatchback

What’s new

For 2018, the Golf R adds adaptive LED headlights, a new 19-inch wheel design, an 8-inch touchscreen display, a customizable gauge cluster, pedestrian detection, and a new seven-speed automatic transmission that replaces last year's six-speed automatic.

Vehicle overview

With an abundance of power, sporty handling and all-wheel-drive stability, the 2018 Volkswagen Golf R is a wildly entertaining car that will boost your pulse rate. It's a star member of the hot-hatch club, which is fitting since VW practically invented the hot hatch with its original 1983 GTI. This newest R version packs 292 horsepower and improved handling and braking capability compared to a 2018 GTI. Naturally, it also boasts a comfortable interior and inherent hatchback versatility.

For 2018, the Golf R carries over largely unchanged, but with a few important tweaks. There are new LED headlights, taillights and daytime running lights. The new headlights are adaptive, meaning they swivel in the direction of turns. There's a new 19-inch wheel design, an 8-inch touchscreen display, a customizable gauge cluster display, pedestrian detection built into the forward collision warning system, and VW's new six-year/72,000-mile bumper-to-bumper transferable warranty.

Perhaps most important is the availability of a new seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission to accompany the six-speed manual transmission. A boon to the performance enthusiast who loves the feeling of a manual transmission but faces the reality of bumper-to-bumper commutes, the new automatic also achieves slightly better fuel economy than the manual.

The only real knock on the Golf R — and it's a big one — is its lofty price tag. It's a hefty premium over the GTI, which isn't quite as capable but is a blast to drive. You're also in V8-powered muscle-car territory. Yet the Golf R is a top pick for any pragmatic performance enthusiast who wants outstanding performance, impressive utility, and a generous set of features.

2018 Volkswagen Golf R models

The 2018 Volkswagen Golf R is the hot-rod edition of the Golf and GTI hatchbacks. The four-door Golf R seats five and comes with a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine (292 horsepower, 280 pound-feet of torque). Power is sent to all four wheels through either a standard six-speed manual transmission or an optional seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission (called DSG).

Standard features include 19-inch wheels with performance tires, an adaptive suspension, adaptive LED headlights, heated mirrors, a rear spoiler, keyless entry, push-button ignition, dual-zone automatic climate control, leather upholstery, a power-adjustable driver's seat and heated front seats. On the tech front, the R comes with VW Car-Net communications, Bluetooth, a navigation system, a digital gauge cluster, an 8-inch touchscreen, a rearview camera, and an eight-speaker Fender audio system with a CD player and satellite radio.

Advanced safety and driver aids include front and rear parking sensors, forward collision warning and mitigation, pedestrian detection, blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert, a lane departure warning system, automatic high beams, and adaptive cruise control.

Trim tested

Each vehicle typically comes in multiple versions that are fundamentally similar. The ratings in this review are based on our full test of the Volkswagen Golf R (turbo 2.0L inline-4 | 6-speed dual-clutch automatic | AWD).

NOTE: Since this test was conducted in 2016, the current Golf R has received some revisions, including a new seven-speed automatic transmission. Our findings, however, remain applicable to this year's Golf R.


The Golf R's 292-horsepower 2.0-liter turbo four-cylinder produces strong power that few competitors can match, and its braking and handling are impressive as well. Importantly, the R's upgrades represent clear improvements over the Volkswagen GTI. As a performance machine, it doesn't disappoint.


Despite its performance potential, the Golf R is surprisingly comfortable, especially compared to other sport compacts. Your daily commute doesn't have to suffer because of your weekend fun.


Yes, this is a very expensive compact hatchback, but it's arguably the best in terms of practicality. The added R touches don't take anything away from that, making the Golf R a car you'd be happy to use every day.


In general, hatchbacks gain an edge for their versatility and generous cargo capacity for the size. The Golf R is no different and gets a slight advantage for everyday usability as a result.


A centerpiece of the new Golf R's tech offerings is an 8-inch capacitive touchscreen that responds when you hover a hand over the screen. Elsewhere, the Golf R offers a robust set of driver aids, including lane departure warning, automatic high beams and pedestrian detection.

Edmunds Insurance Estimator

The Edmunds TCO® estimated monthly insurance payment for a 2018 Volkswagen Golf R in Virginia is:

$74.75 per month*