Parkers overall rating: 4.3 out of 5 4.3

Verdict Should you buy a Volkswagen Golf?

Short answer: yes. And here's why.

At Parkers we often get asked by friends, family and readers who have seen a Volkswagen Golf they like, whether they should buy it. We list alternatives they might consider, frequently to learn weeks later that they've just bought the Golf. And in doing so, they've made the right decision.

With the eight-generation Golf, it's no different, even though there's a raft of technical advancements, reflecting its position at the top of the family car pile. There's only really one point of caution: whereas the previous-generation Golf was so much better than the car it replaced, as well as everything else at the time, the incremental gains this time around are much smaller. Yes, it's excellent in most regards, but it's only ahead of the competition by a nose.

If you want to go electric, the Golf will no longer be the car in which to do it now that the e-Golf is history, putting this one firmly on the internal combustion side of the fence. Want an electric family-sized Volkswagen? Wait for the ID.3.

That aside, there is a Golf for everyone. Petrol, diesel, mild hybrid and plug-in hybrid are all taken care of, with performance versions of all to follow too. Driver enjoyment, long seen as the main compromise when comparing the Golf to some of it's pointier rivals (Ford Focus and BMW 1 Series) has been given a suitable uplift too. While it's certainly sharper there's still a sense of grip being prioritised over edge-of-your-seat excitement, but that'll doubtless appeal to the Golf's target market.

So long as comfort levels remain high for daily ease of use, that can only be a good thing. As can the much more modern, digital interior bestowed on this car. In truth it's tech we've seen in other applications already but the way the screens and touch controls combine in the Golf makes it seem much more futuristic, and ergonomically much simpler.

Unless you cover lots of motorway miles, for us the pick of the range is a 130hp TSI petrol Style model, right from the middle of the range - it's difficult to go wrong with that model.

Further reading

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