Review: Volkswagen Golf Estate (2009 – 2013)
Bluemotion Technology model has impressively low emissions and high mpg, upgraded interior is an improvement on the previous model.
Not a MK VI Golf underneath despite the looks, legroom is tight in the back.
Volkswagen Golf Estate (2009 – 2013): At A Glance
This Volkswagen Golf estate isn't quite as new as it looks. It may have the headlights and grille of the 2009 MK VI Golf hatchback, but it's essentially the same car that was on sale from 2007-2009. Volkswagen has done something similar with the Golf Plus and both cars are based on the Golf MK V, rather than the newer MK VI.
Plus points are the addition of cleaner petrol and diesel engines. While there's not the wide selection of engines that you get with the Golf hatchback, you can pick from some of Volkswagen's finest engines. Of particular note is the Bluemotion model. This uses an ultra-clean 1.6-litre TDI diesel engine to achieve 67mpg and emissions of 109g/km.
Open the tailgate and there's a large, useful boot. There's an impressive 505 litres on offer with the seats up and 1495 litres with the seats folded - more than enough for the needs of most families.
Improvements over the previous Golf Estate include an upgraded dashboard, improved refinement and better standard and optional equipment, including a parking system that will park the car for you. Overall, the Golf estate makes a practical and fuss-free family car.
What does a Volkswagen Golf Estate (2009 – 2013) cost?
Volkswagen Golf Estate (2009 – 2013): What's It Like Inside?
- Boot space is 505–1495 litres
Sit behind the wheel of the Golf estate and you'll find it feels, upmarket and well screwed-together. Much as you'd expect. There have been some changes over the previous 2007-2009 Golf estate, which include a new look for the dash and the use of higher quality buttons and switches. There's liberal use of Volkswagen's trademark blue backlighting - you'll find it on the stereo and behind the dials.
One thing that doesn't seem to have changed is the driving position. Both the seat and steering wheel are multi adjustable, so it's easy for drivers of all shapes and sizes to get comfortable. Forward visibility is good, though the view out of the back can be restricted by the thick rear pillars.
In the back, headroom is good, though some will find that it could do with more legroom - it's a bit of a squeeze for adults. If rear legroom is more of a priority over loadspace, try the Golf Plus - it's not as practical, but has more space in the back. Aside from that, passengers should find it comfortable. The seats are good quality and supportive and it's very quiet on the move thanks to excellent sound proofing.
It's practical too. It may only be 4.5 metres long, but the boot is an impressive size, with 505 litres of load space on offer with the seats up. With the 60:40 split-folding rear seats down, that increases to 1495 litres, which is less than the Focus and Megane, but still more than enough for everyday family needs.
Equipment levels (from launch in October 2009)
ABS anti-lock brakes with HBA (Hydraulic Brake Assist), ESP (Electronic Stabilisation Programme), including EDL (Electronic Differential Lock) and ASR (traction control), driver and front passenger airbags with passenger's airbag deactivation switch, curtain airbag system for front/rear passengers, inc. front side impact airbags, three-point seatbelts for all rear passengers, driver and front passenger's whiplash-optimised head restraints, Isofix child seat preparation for two outer rear seats, electronic engine immobiliser; remote control central locking, 'Climatic' semi-automatic air conditioning with glovebox cooler, front and rear electric windows, electrically adjustable and heated body-coloured door mirrors with integrated indicators, body-coloured bumpers, door handles and roof spoiler; black roof rails, driver's seat height adjustment; height and reach adjustable steering wheel, split-fold rear seats (60:40), four load lashing points in luggage compartment plus removable load cover, multifunction computer, RCD210 radio / MP3 compatible CD player and four speakers, steel wheels with full size wheel trims, 6½J x 16 with 205/55 R16 tyres, full size steel spare wheel
Alarm with interior protection, automatic coming/leaving home lighting function; dusk sensor and automatic driving lights, cruise control, driver's and front passenger's under seat drawer, front comfort seats with height and lumbar adjustment, front centre armrest with storage compartment; roof storage compartment, rear centre armrest; front seat back storage pockets; load-through provision, 12V socket in luggage area, RCD310 radio / MP3 compatible CD player with eight speakers and AUX-in socket for connection to external multimedia source (eg iPod), carpet mats, front and rear, 6½J x 16 ‘Atlanta' alloy wheels with 205/55 R16 tyres and anti-theft bolts.
Chrome trimmed front air intake surround, rear tinted windows from B-pillar back front fog lights, including static cornering function with chrome trimmed surround sports suspension, lowered by approx 15 mm, tyre pressure indicator, leather trimmed steering wheel, gear knob and handbrake grip, front sports seats with height and lumbar adjustment, multifunction steering wheel (with paddle shift if DSG specified), 7J x 17 ‘Porto' alloy wheels with 225/45 R17 tyres and anti-theft bolts.
Child seats that fit a Volkswagen Golf Estate (2009 – 2013)Our unique Car Seat Chooser shows you which child car seats will fit this car and which seat positions that they will fit, so that you don't have to check every car seat manufacturer's website for compatibility.
What's the Volkswagen Golf Estate (2009 – 2013) like to drive?
The engine line-up is a slimmed-down version of what's available in the Golf hatchback and almost all feature a decent blend of performance and economy. The two petrols - a 1.2 TSI and a 1.4 TSI - are among the best engines that Volkswagen produces. They may be small, but they pack quite a punch. Both are turbocharged and they produce 105bhp and 122bhp - much more power than you'd normally expect for this engine size. They're good fun to drive too, with excellent acceleration and littl in the way of turbo lag. These modern engines are economical too, with the 1,4 TSI capable of 47mpg.
The two small (but powerful) petrols may be excellent, but the majority of people opt for one of the diesels. The smallest of these is a 1.6-litre with 90bhp or 105bhp. Most buyers choose the 105bhp version as it's available on all models (the 90bhp option is only on S spec) and the extra power makes all the difference. This 105bhp 1.6-litre TDI features in the Bluemotion Technology model which, combined with a start/stop system, brings emissions down to 109 g/km and increases fuel economy to 67mpg.
Go for the larger 140bhp 2.0-litre if you're looking for keener performance. It's smoother and more refined than the 1.6-litre and gets from 0-60mph in 9.4 seconds and onto a top speed of 129mph. It's also marginally better when it comes to towing, ablt to pull a braked weight of 1500kg (it's 1400kg for the 1.6-litre diesel).
Out on the road, little gives away that this is an estate - it drives much in the same way as a Golf hatchback. Comfort is one of its biggest strengths - the excellent ride does a good job of soaking up lumps and bumps on most surfaces and at most speeds. The steering is well-weighted, giving a good feeling of control to the driver at all times and manual models feature an excellent slick gearchange.
Load up the Golf estate and it still continues to impress. Even with a heavy load at the back, bodyroll is kept well under control and it maintains its composure.
|1.2 TSI||49 mpg||11.3 s||136 g/km|
|1.2 TSI DSG||48 mpg||11.3 s||136 g/km|
|1.4 TSI||45 mpg||9.9 s||146 g/km|
|1.4 TSI DSG||47 mpg||9.9 s||139 g/km|
|1.6 TDI 105||63 mpg||11.9 s||119 g/km|
|1.6 TDI 105 DSG||59 mpg||11.9 s||125 g/km|
|1.6 TDI 90||63 mpg||13.8 s||119 g/km|
|1.6 TDI BlueMotion Technology||67 mpg||11.9 s||109 g/km|
|1.6 TDI DSG BlueMotion Technology||66 mpg||11.9 s||113 g/km|
|2.0 TDI||58 mpg||9.7 s||128 g/km|
|2.0 TDI DSG||52 mpg||9.7 s||139 g/km|
Real MPG average for a Volkswagen Golf Estate (2009 – 2013)
Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.
Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.
Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.
What have we been asked about the Volkswagen Golf Estate (2009 – 2013)?
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