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Parkers overall rating: 4.8 out of 5 4.8

It’s all about clarity this car, and almost every component part smacks of it. From the clear and easy to read instruments through the high-quality colour displays to the neatly laid out switchgear, everything is incredibly intuitive and simple to use.

The centre console is actually quite aggressively angled towards the driver – something you only really notice from the passenger seat – ensuring those behind the wheel always feel totally engrossed in the experience.

And as you’d expect for a VW, the switchgear that decorates it feels incredibly high quality, with solid responses to every finger press and twisting rotation.

Likewise the quality of materials used elsewhere in the cabin are exemplary. Soft touch plastics dominate, with less glitzy finishes found only where the hand isn’t likely to stray – otherwise every other contact point feels reassuringly more expensive than the car’s list price would suggest.

Certainly, compared to some of its more pared-down rivals the Golf GTI feels incredibly premium from the cabin especially.

And the standard sports seats, either finished in cloth, half leather or full leather, prove comfortable and supportive. Adjustment from the chairs and the steering wheel ensure getting into your desired driving position is a matter of moments, and you actually feel like you’re sitting quite low in the car.

The cloth items pull off the neat trick of still looking expensive and high quality too, so there’s actually not many reasons to specify an upgrade to the leather.

Volkswagen Golf GTI comfort should be rated very highly indeed, and as an all-round hot-hatch the Golf excels at its duties.

You’ll notice from the moment you slip into the sports seat and grip the leather steering wheel that the Golf is supremely comfortable.

There’s loads of adjustment to be found in the seats and steering wheel, so finding your perfect driving position should be easy.

And the seats themselves do that neat trick of feeling properly figure-hugging, but with enough support and comfort to take the pain out of longer journeys.

Of primary note should be the ride quality, which even on 18-inch alloy wheels and sports suspension is better than some family hatchbacks. No matter what is thrown at the dampers, they soak up imperfections, no matter how sharp, short, extreme or gradual with instant response and assured reactions.

All of the cars we drove were fitted with the optional adaptive chassis control which allows the driver to select between Comfort, Normal and sports modes for the suspension. However, even in Normal or Sport modes the GTI remains compliant.

On the motorway it feels right at home, the engine barely audible at a steady throttle, as the suspension smothers any unsightly expansion gaps in the road surface. There’s very little in the way of wind noise noticeable either, and despite the large wheels and tyres fitted road noise is kept to a minimum also.

Moving into faster-moving lanes of traffic is taken care of by the instant power delivery and strong mid-range torque on offer too, and you can happily leave the GTI in sixth gear for most situations.