Is your car your pride and joy, or are you ready for a change? Let us know and you could win a £300 John Lewis voucher | No thanks

Volkswagen Golf VI (2009–2013)

Last updated 1 May 2019

Comfortable and quiet on the move, enjoyable to drive. Nicely trimmed with great attention to detail. 1.4 TSI sweeter to drive than a diesel.
7-speed dry clutch DSG problems. EA189 diesel emissions problems. Chain cam 1.4 TSI problems, especially Twincharger. EGR problems with 1.6 TDI. Demoted to 3 stars due to huge number of reported faults.
Updated 1 May 2019

Report of rising oil level in engine of 2012 VW Golf 2.0TDI 140 at 107k miles. Historically no DPF issues as mainly steady long distance motorway journeys and have never seen the DPF dashboard light....

Read more


It's not easy to improve something that's already near perfect, but Volkswagen appeared to have managed it with the Volkswagen Golf. It was more refined, more comfortable and felt even higher quality then the previous model. It appeared that the Volkswagen Golf set a new standard for hatchbacks.

It was not actually completely new, but a thoroughly revamped version of the 2004 Volkswagen Golf with small but key improvements all round. This is most telling on the move where the Golf VI is incredibly quiet and smooth, with the feel of a much larger car.

The quality and finish of the interior were impeccable too (velour lined golvebox, for example, so things don't rattle around in there) and there's a premium feel to the controls and switches. There was also new technology available on this Golf including a clever adaptive air suspension system (called ACC or Adaptive Chassis System) which can vary the handing and ride between sport or comfort modes.

The engine line-up was impressive and all the models offer good economy - both petrols and diesels. The 1.4 TSI 122 is a great choice with excellent torque and smoothness at low revs, but what really grabbed the headlines were the Bluemotion models. Thanks to continual improvements, the 1.6 TDI emits just 99g/km of CO2 and has claimed economy of 74.3mpg.

Unfortunately, these engines have proven unsuitable for repeated short runs from cold with many readers experiencing EGR and DPF problems. Great for long distances. But for short runs, far better a 1.4 TSI or 1.2 TSI.

Volkswagen Golf 1.4 TSI 2009 Road Test and Video

Volkswagen Golf GTI 2009 Road Test

Owners' reviews

This is the most unreliable car the I have ever owned.
Brilliant levels of overall comfort, performance and economy
As you would expect from Volkswagen
Brilliant in every way
Very poor reliability and expensive to repair
List Price from £19,925
Buy new from £16,095
Contract hire from £167.99 per month

Ask Honest John

Value my car