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Golf VI In Depth Press Materials - 70 new photos added!
By source: Volkswagen AG Press Release
Sep 8, 2008, 22:26


The design targets for Volkswagen Design could not have been set any higher: “Our challenge is to create the iconic cars of the future.” This memorable sentence was spoken by Italian Walter de Silva as he assumed overall design leadership at Volkswagen AG in February 2007. It indicated just how conscious the team around de Silva was of its responsibility to take world successes like the Golf forward into the future.


Now in 2008 there is the Golf, one of the first cars to receive its final touches under the new leadership of de Silva. The team retooled one of the most popular automotive designs in the world for contemporary times. The powerfully and clearly designed Golf completes the circle begun by the especially influential Golf generations I (1974 to 1983) and IV (1997 to 2003). The unique character of the overall design and orientation of the headlamps, taillights and side profile are also a reflection of the realignment of the overall design of all Volkswagen models.

The Golf is part of a strategy that will sharpen the brand’s design in all classes. That is because all of the most successful European car brand’s design criteria were completely redefined under the orchestration of Walter de Silva.

In the process, Walter de Silva, Flavio Manzoni (Group director for creative design) and Klaus Bischoff, (design chief for the Volks wagen brand), have not by any means jettisoned the powerful design details of days past. On the contrary: “We have assembled a selection of core elements, which can be described as ‘historical DNA’. Successful new Volkswagen designs – such as the one now realized on the Golf – will take on this DNA to create both a familiar impression and yet new feeling in the eye of the beholder”, says Walter de Silva.

Anyone looking at the new Golf quickly recognizes what this signifies. The sixth generation does not exhibit any radical break from previous models; instead it clearly remains “the Golf” from any perspective. An original. Unique. Stable, timeless and class-free, reliable and with universal appeal. “Volkswagen’s formal design language as realized on the Golf”, says Klaus Bischoff, “creates a new feeling in product design. It is easy to understand, yet very difficult to recreate.” So far, the logic of this design has not been mimicked by any Golf class competitor, nor have they matched the car’s continual advanced development or success over more than three decades.

The layout of Golf styling follows the Volkswagen DNA rearranged by de Silva, Manzoni and Bischoff. A key aspect here is an extremely high level of value; this image is reflected par excellence in the new Golf: “We have cast the Golf’s core components in a precise, new mold”, explains Walter de Silva. And he emphasizes this: “The Golf is the global icon of car making. So the architecture and styling of new model must also be absolutely clear and unique.” Truly an icon of the future. At the same time, the sixth Golf has a sportier and more distinctive appearance than any previous generation of the model series. De Silva: “It is more accentuated, more three-dimensional than its predecessor; with precisely defined lines and edges, and with finely proportioned flared surfaces and recesses.” And Klaus Bischoff, Chief Designer for the Volkswagen brand, adds: “Every detail is uncompromisingly aimed at improving value.”

Especially in a direct comparison of generations V and VI, it becomes clear just how much the new Golf has changed. The team headed up by de Silva, Manzoni and Bischoff crystallized out the Golf’s essential DNA and sent it on a trip into the future. Style details include the clarity of the front end of the first generation and the C-pillar perfected in the fourth generation.

The roof section now rests – similar to the new Scirocco – on a prominently contoured shoulder section. Responsible for this is a dominant curved line that – like a muscle trained down to the last fiber – extends from the headlights back to the taillights. This side profile line – which Volks wagen Design calls the “character line” – also gives the Golf a fuller, lower stance on the road from a lateral perspective.

All body surfaces are more relaxed, more athletic. As mentioned, in front the new car adopts the horizontally aligned radiator grille of the first Golf generation; the grille itself is in high-gloss black. The lines of the bumper match those of the radiator grille. Beneath this is a section with another air scoop. Also presented over a black background are the chrome light housings of the dynamically styled headlamps.

The rear too is marked by a predominance of horizontal lines. The taillights – now very wide – are marked among other things by an unmistakably unique night design. Stylistically, the crystal-clear line of turn signal and backup lamps bears a resemblance to the taillights of the Touareg. Overall, the new Golf – in the interplay of all of its design characteristics – gives the appearance of a significantly wider, low-profile and higher end car.


The new Golf is 4,199 millimeters long, making it five millimeters shorter than its predecessor. Its width grew by 20 millimeters to 1,779. The car’s height remained the same at 1,479 millimeters. Nonetheless, this sixth generation has a considerably more extended appearance. This can be attributed to the design itself and its carefully rearranged proportions. In front, the body overhang was shortened from 880 to 868 millimeters; meanwhile, in the rear the overhang was lengthened by seven millimeters (753 millimeters). Its wheelbase did not change at 2,578 millimeters. The sum total of all of these modifications creates a clearly more dynamic overall impression.

Like its predecessor, the new Golf will also be offered as a two-door and a four-door. The outside dimensions of the two body versions are practically identical.


The sixth Golf also preserves the car body’s excellent layout and high level of everyday utility. The development team relied on perfection in details. Take the new door handles, for example; they are always painted and fit even better, more firmly in the hand, have a higher-end appearance and above all offer optimal properties for opening the doors in case of an accident. Another example of refinement in the finest sense of the word: the new outside mirrors. Conceptually they are based on those of the new Passat CC. The result: much better aerodynamic properties, much less wind noise and much less dirt on the mirrors in adverse weather conditions.

Achieving the best possible acoustic properties on the new Golf was a top priority for Volkswagen. In this context, the body was equipped with new detailed solutions in a variety of areas. A special sound-damping film in the windshield reduces driving noises, as does the newly developed seal concept for the doors and side window guides. As mentioned, the outside mirrors generate substantially less wind noise due to their new shape. Furthermore, special modifications were made to better isolate the engine and passenger compartments from one another acoustically. Quiet rolling tires and new engine bearings round out the noise reduction program. Independent of body-related modifications, further improvement in noise comfort is realized by the use of a new generation of turbo-diesels with common rail injection, as well as integration of TSI gasoline engines that are known to be quiet (see also Engines section).

Acoustic modifications in detail

In all actions aimed at reducing noise, the factor of “weight” was always considered. In this context, Volkswagen replaced heavy noise-damping materials with new, lighter materials wherever possible. Damping technologies and materials were specifically redesigned in the areas of the fenders, engine firewall, foot pedals, center tunnel, around the air conditioning and heating system and in the cargo area. Beforehand, special ultrasonic measurements and so-called near-field holography were conducted to analyze where noise might be reduced in and on the Golf.

In addition, many secondary noises have already been eliminated or reduced at their source. In particular, this was achieved in all belt drives, the turbocharger and charge air distribution as well as in the heating and cooling blower. Usually reserved for cars of the luxury class, the windows of the Golf were also addressed by noise control measures. For the first time in this Volkswagen class, a highly effective noise-damping film is used in the windshield that eliminates nearly all high-frequency noise in the three kHz frequency range; this noise range is especially typical for vehicles with diesel engines. In parallel, the thickness of the front side windows was increased by ten percent.

In other supportive actions, developers came up with a new sealing concept for the doors. New dual-lip window guide seals, for example, provide for a quiet interior.

Last but not least, targeted aerodynamic modifications have further perfected acoustic comfort. Besides the car’s fundamentally refined aerodynamics, and the already mentioned outside mirror design, there are the newly designed rain channels at the A-pillars, which put an end to wind noises and simultaneously improve the cw value. This is how the new Golf attains a level of acoustic comfort that is second to none even among far more expensive automobiles.


The Golf is being offered with a seamless package of safety features as standard equipment. On the passive side, there is a further perfected safety body (including additional reinforcement in the door area and optimized pedestrian protection), seven airbags including knee airbag on the driver’s side and a patented head restraint system for driver and front passenger (WOKS). If rear side airbags are also aboard (optional), the Golf is the first Volkswagen to have automatic “belt fastening detection” in the rear. Furthermore, a new sensor concept for crash detection is being introduced to Golf production.

New sensor concept for crash detection

The sixth generation of the Golf is equipped with a new sensor concept for detecting crash intensity and ignition of the airbags. This involves having the electronics, located centrally in the passenger compartment, evaluate the “felt” low-frequency deceleration signals. In addition, specially tuned accelerometers measure the frequency components in the mid or “audible” range. These signal components are generated as a body wave when load-bearing structures in the front car area rapidly deform. They propagate at high speed throughout the vehicle structure and supply precise and very quickly available information on the severity of the crash.

By intelligently linking “felt” and “audible” signal components, it is possible to obtain a faster and at the same time more reliable characterization of the crash from the airbag sensors. That enables better adaptation of airbags and seatbelt tensioners to the crash situation, to optimally protect passengers. The new sensor system for the Golf was awarded the Bavarian Innovation Prize in Germany.

Knee airbag

Standard equipment on the new Golf includes two front airbags, two side airbags and two head airbags. For the first time, the Golf also has a knee airbag system on the driver’s side. The special mounting location of the knee airbag – beneath the knee impact area on the instrument panel – ensures that there is no contact between the airbag door and the lower leg.

In case of a crash the airbag deploys in front of the driver’s knees in less than 20 milliseconds and absorbs – in conjunction with the seatbelt and front airbag – a significant share of the energy to be reduced in the pelvic area. The driver is integrated into the vehicle’s deceleration early via the thighs and pelvis, and the steering wheel airbag cushions the driver’s chest and head at the optimal angle in the resulting, gently introduced upper body movement.

In general, the knee airbag protects the driver’s legs from a hard collision with the steering column and instrument panel. In case of an offset impact angle, the feet are also better protected against lateral ankle twist.

Front, side and head airbags

The driver and front passenger airbags (the so-called front airbags), together with the knee airbag and safety belt system, together form a precisely coordinated front restraint system on the new Golf.

As before, the side airbags are still integrated in the seatbacks of the front seats. They protect the chest, abdomen and pelvis and have been optimally tuned to the car’s more rigid lateral structure. By integrating the side airbags in the seatback, optimal positioning of driver and front passenger in relation to the airbags is assured. The same is true of the optional rear side airbags in the four-door Golf.

Furthermore, Volkswagen is introducing standard head airbags that help to prevent high biomechanical loads on the head. Specifically, these airbags cover the side window area from the A pillar to the C pillar and from the roofliner to the door window sill. The result: maximum protection at all seating positions regardless of body size. That is because protection over a large area prevents the head and extremities from swinging out and prevents objects from penetrating into the car’s interior. Due to the long holding time of the head airbags, they largely remain effective even in secondary collisions such as those occurring in the case of a rollover accident.

WOKS – Head restraints work against whiplash trauma

Accident-related hyperextensions of the cervical spine are known internationally as “whiplash syndrome”. Volkswagen counteracts these types of injuries by coordinating the motions of the head and upper body as synchronously as possible via the seatbacks and head restraints in the event of a crash. This is called the “Whiplash Optimized Head Restraint System”, or WOKS for short. The latest generation of WOKS is now being implemented as standard equipment on the Golf.

To reduce the risk of injury, excellent protection is obtained by achieving defined deceleration velocity of the upper body via the seatback, coordinated deceleration of the head via the head restraint, and balanced motions of head and upper body. Decisive here are the special contour of the head restraints and seatbacks as well as the hardness of the foam material used here. The contoured shape of the head restraints is being patented by Volkswagen. On related studies, WOKS has demonstrated a level of protective potential that is substantially better than the biomechanical values attained by many active systems.

New seatbelt fastening detection for the rear

Another highlight in the Golf is the new seatbelt fastening detection system for the rear. It is automatically included when the Volkswagen is ordered with optional side airbags and belt tensioners for the outer rear seat positions. Thanks to this warning system, the driver can tell whether occupants are buckled up on the rear bench seat when starting the car and during the drive.

The belt fastening system works like this: after activating the ignition, for thirty seconds the driver is informed whether occupants are buckled up in the rear seats on the multifunc tional display. If a seatbelt is fastened, a relevant symbol is shown (buckled person) for the specific seat location. An unfastened seatbelt is also displayed (empty seat). While driving, if the safety belts in the rear are unbuckled at a vehicle speed greater than 25 km/h, the seat belt indicator flashes for thirty seconds (displayed symbol alternates between empty seat and buckled person); an acoustic signal is also output.


In the changeover from the third to fourth generation Golf, an enormous leap was made with regard to materials used in the interior. Thanks to its high-end image, the fourth Golf essentially nullified class distinctions in the opinion of many experts. Now, on the sixth generation Golf, Volkswagen has succeeded in making a similar leap in terms of customer value.

This high value is a common thread that runs through the redesigned interior, setting new standards in the Golf class with its refined surfaces and features, especially in the cockpit area. The touch and look of the materials, details such as brushed chrome accents and the round instruments and steering wheels taken directly from the Passat CC leave the impression that one is actually sitting in a vehicle of the next higher market segment. And this not only applies to the two upgraded Golf equipment versions “Comfortline” and “Highline”, but also to the “Trendline” base variant.

The ergonomics of the interior also reflect advanced development. The Golf “simply fits”. All functional components are even easier to operate. These include controls for the climate control system (Climatronic) initially presented on the Passat CC, as well as the switch array for power windows and outside mirrors that is now arranged further forward in the driver’s door panel, making it easier to reach.

Intuitive controls have always been one of the Golf’s great strengths. To make further progress in this area, one of the tools that Volkswagen is relying on is the RAMSIS 3D computer-human model. This simulation model enables checking of all conceivable person-constituent combinations. When car drivers sit in a new Golf today, with every hand movement they have the feeling that the car is personally customized to them, and a good part of this can be traced back to advanced development technologies such as RAMSIS.

Sometimes it is the smallest of details that have the greatest effects. Take the example of leather seats: for the first time on the Golf a new, more robust leather is being used. Even on very light-colored leather, this makes dye transfer, especially from jeans, passé. Or consider the example of the cargo area: four practical hooks ensure that after shopping, the contents of shopping bags are not strewn across the cargo area. Or the example of steering wheel adjustment: length and height adjustment of the steering column was redesigned: the lever for steering wheel adjustment was moved from the center of the steering column to the left side, where it is now intuitively easier to reach. Or the example of door trim: on the driver’s side a storage compartment has already been integrated for the sensible, and in many countries required, reflective warning vest.


The instrument panel of the Golf was completely redesigned. This has resulted in a clear, well-organized geometry that offers uncompromisingly ease of operation and a high level of timeless elegance. On initial contact with the new Golf, one is immediately impressed by the luxurious soft materials of the upper cockpit area and door trim that complement the design of the instruments.

The instruments of the Golf exhibit styling that is similar to instruments presented for the first time on the Passat CC in early 2008. Prominent here are the two round instruments with brushed chrome bezels in the base equipment version; the tachometer is on the left, and the speedometer on the right. Also designed as a round instrument is the gauge for engine coolant temperature; it is integrated in the lower part of the tachometer. Its counterpart on the speedometer is the fuel gauge. Gauge scale markings are backlit in white (regardless of whether the headlights are on or off); while turn signal indicators are in red. Also designed in white now are the graphics of the multifunctional display – arranged between the tachometer and speedometer – that is always standard equipment.

Another new design is the light switch. On the “Comfortline” and “High line” equipment versions, the switch’s handhold is in metal. Like the main gauges, ventilation system vents near the instrument cluster also have brushed chrome surrounds. There is one vent at the outer limits of the driver and passenger sides, and two in the center console. In addition, a vent for the side windows is integrated in each of the A-pillar trim panels. Complementing the chrome bezels, the upper and lower arrays of instruments are separated by accents in light silver (“Titanium silver”) on the “Trendline” base version. In the middle “Comfortline” equipment version the accents are glossy black (“Black pyramid”), and in the top “Highline” version they are in dark “Brushed chrome”.

Center console

All of the controls arranged on the center console are readily and equally accessible to driver and front passenger. Right at the top is the hazard flasher switch, optimally located between the air vents. On the level below this is the audio or radio-navigation system. The third level of controls interfaces to the heating and ventilation or climate control system. Control buttons here are also designed with brushed chrome bezels or – in the case of the rotary switch – in brushed chrome.

Another set of switches is located directly in front of the gearshift lever; it activates or deactivates ESP and “Park Assist”.

If the Golf is ordered with an automatic climate control system (Climatronic), a newly developed set of controls is used. To the left and right there is a rotary switch that the driver and front passenger can use to select temperatures separately in 1 degree increments. And they can activate seat heating too. Naturally, the temperature for the two sides can also be controlled together. The set temperature is displayed outside in the surround of the rotary switch, and if a RCD 310, RCD 510, RNS 310 or RNS 510 radio or radio-navigation system is installed, it is also shown in that unit’s display. In the area between the control knobs the main operating modes of the Climatronic (“Auto”, completely “Off”, “Dual”, “AC”) and the blower levels are set. Arranged in the upper area are the controls for ventilation modes, rear window heating and recirculation functions.

Further down the center console, at the height of the parking brake lever, is the familiar storage compartment and an AUX-IN port (standard with RCD 310 and higher) that can be used to connect devices such as an MP3 player. The optional MEDIA-IN port can also be integrated in the storage compartment of the option-related center armrest. This USB port makes it possible to interface to a wide variety of memory sources for the audio system. For example, with a suitable cable an iPod, including its special control functions, can also be integrated in the system as a music source.

Door trim panels

The door trim panels were also completely redesigned. The quality of materials and ergonomics were improved here too. Take the example of the driver’s door: The switch array for the power windows and outside mirror adjustment was located further upward and forward. In the “Highline” equipment version, the upper buttons for the window lifts and mirror adjustment switches also have chrome bezels. All Golf versions have accents in the door trim that serve as a quasi extension of the chrome door handles. Complementing the chrome bezels, the upper and lower instrument areas are separated by accents in light silver (“Titanium silver”) on the base version. In the middle “Comfortline” equipment version, the accents are glossy black (“Black – Pyramid”), on the “Highline” top version they are in dark “Brushed chrome”.


Volkswagen is offering the new Golf in four different seat configurations, depending on the equipment line. The “Trendline” base version already has excellent contoured seats in the “Roxy” fabric design. These seats can be ordered in “Titan ium black” or “Latte Macchiato” color. The comfort seat of the Golf Comfortline has been designed to be more ergonomic than before. The cross-stitched fabric of the seat and seatback surfaces creates a clear visual contrast to exterior areas. The fabric pattern is named “Scout / Merlin”, and it can be ordered in “Titanium black” or “Latte Macchiato” color.

The sport seats of the Golf Highline are especially refined. Upholstery is made of Alcantara (center panel of seats) and fabric (“Dropmag” pattern). Colors of the “Highline” seats: “Titanium black” and “Corn Silk”. In addition, Volkswagen is offering a special sport seat on the new Golf. It is in “Titanium black”; the seat and seatback surfaces are made of the black/white checkered material “Me2”. As an option, sport seats can be configured in the very luxurious “Vienna” leather. Here the colors “Titanium black”, the light “Corn Silk” and “Natural brown / Truffle” are available. If the latter color combination is selected, the roofliner is in “Titanium black”.

The sixth generation of the bestselling five-seater offers exceptionally spacious conditions in all versions. Essentially, its dimensions are very similar to its spacious predecessor. In front, the maximum interior height is 1,033 millimeters (seat in lowest position). To accommodate the wide range of heights of Golf drivers, male and female, the seat can be adjusted 310 millimeters longitudinally and 61.5 millimeters vertically.

The rear seating area offers a maximum interior height of 979 millimeters; leg room in the so-called extended position of the driver’s seat is 45 millimeters. Also contributing to the car’s good comfort and ergonomic properties is the appealing seat height of 279 millimeters in front and 321 millimeters in back. The interior of the Volkswagen is 1,447 millimeters wide in the area of the front armrests, and up to 1,452 millimeters in the rear. These dimensions underscore how the Golf continues to offer sufficient space for five persons – even on long drives – despite its compact exterior dimensions.

Cargo area

The optimal cargo area package of the fifth generation of Golf cars was transferred 1:1 to its successor. When all five seats are utilized, the cargo area is 828 millimeters long and has a cargo capacity of 350 liters. When the standard 1/3 to 2/3 split rear seat bench is folded down, cargo capacity increases to 1,305 liters and the usable length to 1,581 millimeters. The smallest width between the wheel housings is 1,008 millimeters.


At its European market introduction, Volkswagen is offering the new Golf with four different gasoline engines and two diesels. The power range extends from 59 kW / 80 PS to 118 kW / 160 PS. Four of the six engines are charged by supercharger and / or turbocharger. For the first time on the Golf, the latest generation of common rail turbo-diesel (TDI) is being used. These engines are replacing the pump-nozzle direct injection engines offered previously, and they make a considerable contribution toward attaining the Golf’s pioneering acoustic properties.

Furthermore, the gasoline and diesel engines of all power levels are more fuel efficient than comparable engines on the previous Golf. Fuel savings – and therefore emission reductions too – are enormous in some cases. Making an especially strong appearance here is the alliance between the latest TSI gasoline engines and dual clutch transmissions (DSG). An example: in the version with a 160 PS strong TSI plus DSG, the new Golf consumes 28 percent less fuel than the comparable gasoline engine with conventional automatic. That is a key reason why the 6 and 7-speed DSGs are completely replacing torque-converter automatics on the Golf.


The four gasoline engine variants that are being offered in the launch phase will output 59 kW / 80 PS, 75 kW / 102 PS, 90 kW / 122 PS and 118 kW / 160 PS. Starting at 90 kW / 122 PS, TSI engines with supercharger and/or turbocharger are used. The fact is that the gasoline engines are pioneers in fuel efficiency too. The optimized 80-PS entry-level engine consumes just 6.4 liters of super per hundred kilometers (149 g/km CO2) – that is 0.5 liters less than its predecessor. Once again, the TSI engines are taking the stage as prime examples of efficiency: at 122 PS the new Golf 1.4 TSI consumes just 6.2 liters Super (144 g/km CO2); this represents a consumption improvement of 0.1 liters. Even the new 160-PS top version of the 1.4 TSI attains a top value at 6.3 liters. In comparison to the retired 150-PS FSI, fuel consumption of the 160-PS TSI was even lowered by 1.7 liters per 100 kilometers.

1.4 with 59 kW / 80 PS

The entry into the world of the Golf in engines is marked again by the 1.4-liter engine (1,390 cm3) with multi-point injection (SRE) that has proven itself a million times over and outputs 59 kW / 80 PS power at 5,000 rpm. The gasoline engine attains its maximum torque of 132 Newton-meter at 3,800 rpm.

A version of this economical bestselling engine with wide-ranging technical modifications is being used on the new Golf; with an average fuel consumption of just 6.4 liters (149 g/km CO2) per hundred kilometers it requires a considerable 0.5 liters less fuel than the same version on the fifth Golf generation.

As a two-door car, the base version of the Golf with this engine is a light 1,142 kilogram (DIN curb weight) and reaches a top speed of 172 km/h. It takes 13.9 seconds for the four cylinder – shifted by a five-speed transmission – to accelerate to 100 km/h. The first service inspection – and this applies to all new Golf versions – is not due until after three years or 60,000 kilometers.

The low-friction and therefore fuel efficient basic architecture of the engine was successfully integrated in the new Golf. Technically, the aluminum engine is designed with a four-valve head as well as rocker arm valve actuation. Consistent use of plastics and lightweight metals resulted in an engine weight of just 94 kilograms (per DIN70020-GZ). To satisfy the Euro-5 emissions standard, the engine electronics were fundamentally modified, and the fuel system is an advanced development. Furthermore, a new noble metal lining of the catalytic converter system, modified overall transmission gear ratios and much better rolling and air resistance values of the sixth Golf generation contribute toward fulfilling the stringent limits of the standard that becomes law in September 2009.

1.6 with 75 kW / 102 PS

Like the 1.4 liter gasoline engine, the modified 1.6 liter engine (1,595 cm3) with multi-port injection and 75 kW / 102 PS (5,600 rpm) satisfies the strict Euro-5 emissions standard. The four-cylinder develops a maximum torque of 148 Newton-meter at 3,800 rpm. With this engine, the new Golf handles the sprint to 100 km/h in 11.3 seconds; its top speed is 188 km/h. On average, the gasoline engine consumes 7.1 liters of fuel per 100 kilometers (166 g/km CO2) – that represents a reduction of 0.3 liters in fuel consumption compared to the previous version. The 1.6 is also shifted by a five-speed transmission as standard equipment.

With the aim of further improving fuel economy and lowering emissions, the 102 PS Golf has a modified catalytic converter lining as well as a newly programmed engine controller, which was designed in parallel for onboard diagnostics. Moreover, the 102-PS engine can be ordered together with the new 7-speed DSG. In this case, fuel savings compared to the previous version with classic torque converter automatic amounts to 18 percent.

A “Flex Fuel“ version of the 1.6-liter engine was also specially developed for the Swedish market. This Golf can be operated with either ethanol fuels or Super gasoline; its technical features include electric preheat of the engine.

1.4 TSI with 90 kW / 122 PS

Of course, the 1.4 TSI with 90 kW / 122 PS, introduced on the Golf for the first time in 2007, will also be used in the new generation of the bestseller. This turbocharged TSI is one of the most advanced gasoline engines in the world. There is hardly another gasoline engine with a comparably impressive power curve that is so fuel efficient. In the new Golf, the four-cylinder direct injection engine requires just 6.2 liters of fuel per 100 kilometers (144 g/km CO2) – that is 0.1 liter less than on the previous version. Standard in this case is a six-speed transmission. Even more fuel efficient is the 122-PS strong Golf 1.4 TSI, when it is shifted via the optional 7-speed DSG; this combination yields an average fuel consumption of 6.0 liters (138 g/km CO2).

This contrasts with excellent driving performance. The Golf 1.4 TSI at this power level is moving at 100 km/h after just 9.5 seconds, shifted by manual transmission or DSG. Its top speed in both cases is 200 km/h. Like all engines on the new Golf, this TSI also fulfills the Euro-5 standard. With this new standard in mind, the emissions system of the 122-PS TSI was also equipped with a modified composition for the catalytic converter’s noble metal lining.

This highly praised and award-winning engine develops its peak power of 122 PS at 5,000 rpm. The engine’s maximum torque of 200 Newton-meter is available over a wide speed range extending from a low 1,500 to 4,000 rpm. Even at 1,250 rpm – which is barely above idling speed – 80 percent of the maximum torque is already available.

Technology of the 122-PS TSI in detail

Technically, gasoline direct injection, engine charging and reduced displacement are some of the most efficient measures for significantly improving fuel economy and – just as significantly – driving dynamic properties too. That is why Volkswagen is taking precisely this approach with its TSI engines. Reducing engine displacement, which simultaneously reduces friction and charge changing losses, makes it possible to attain lower specific consumption and better efficiency. Depending on the performance class, charging is either implemented as a combination of turbocharger and supercharger or exclusively with a specially developed turbocharger, as on the “small” TSI.

With its very high specific torque von 144 Newton-meter per liter, over a broad range from 5,000 to 6,400 rpm, the 122 PS strong TSI delivers exceptionally agile response; and there is no ‘turbo hole’ either. The 1.4 liter TSI, like the larger 160-PS TSI, is a 16-valve four cylinder of the EA111 engine generation with 1,390 cm3 displacement, electronically controlled gasoline direct injection, mapped ignition with cylinder-selective anti-knock control, turbocharger and intercooling.

The turbocharger is designed to be compact and weight-optimized. In keeping with the overall engine concept, here too the focus was on the best possible dynamic behavior and fuel economy. It is thanks to the very quick response of the charger and the low-profile design of intake and exhaust cams together with intake cam adjustment, that the mentioned 80 percent of maximum torque of 200 Newton-meter is already available at 1,250 rpm. Another special aspect of the 122-PS TSI is its water-cooled intercooler located directly in the induction pipe. It is part of a low-temperature coolant loop that is independent of the engine coolant system. Advantage: the charge air system exhibits a lower volume than is the case in conventional approaches using a front intercooler. This considerably shortens the time required to reach a charge pressure of 1,800 millibar in the induction system. The results: a dynamic plus due to minimal delay times until the maximum combustion chamber charge is reached. This dynamic plus is available – and this is crucial – despite all fuel-economizing on the new Golf TSI.

1.4 TSI with 118 kW / 160 PS

As the most powerful gasoline engine on the new Golf, Volkswagen is implementing a four cylinder that is both turbo- and supercharged and has a power of 118 kW / 160 PS (at 5,800 rpm). Of special interest here is the engine’s specific power: the 1.4 liter engine attains 84.3 kW or114.3 PS per liter of displacement. Its maximum torque of 240 Newton-meter is already available at a low 1,500 rpm. Like the 122-PS TSI, this engine is also exceptionally fuel-efficient. The 160-PS TSI achieves a top value in savings at 6.3 liters; compared to the retired 150-PS FSI, its fuel consumption has been reduced by 1.7 liters! When the 160-PS TSI is paired with 7-speed DSG, fuel consumption is even reduced to 6.0 liter (139 g/km CO2). Compared to the 150-PS FSI with a 6-speed automatic, this yields a savings of 2.3 liters or 28 percent. At German market launch the powerful 160-PS Golf will be offered with DSG exclusively.

The driving performance data of the Golf 1.4 TSI DSG are also impressive: after just 8.0 seconds the Volkswagen with fully automatic transmission is moving at 100 km/h; its top speed is 220 km/h.

Technology of the 160-PS TSI in detail

For integration in the Golf, advance development of this TSI engine was comprehensive. A newly designed induction channel made it possible to eliminate gate switching to control the charge air movement. Noticeable results: optimized torque curve in the lower and middle engine speed range. Furthermore, Volkswagen a implementing a new generation of high-pressure injection valves; thanks to broader atomization of the fuel this leads to improved mixture homogenization and finally to optimized emissions. Furthermore, compared to the 170-PS variant of the previous version the new TSI has a modified oil flow loop with a more efficient oil pump, reduced bearing wear on the camshafts and crankshaft, as well as optimized pistons and cylinder sleeves.

Especially interesting from a technical perspective is a look at the complementary interaction of supercharger and turbocharger. The supercharger, mechanically driven by a belt, increases the TSI torque at low engine speeds. This is a charging unit based on the Roots Principle. A special aspect of the supercharger that is used is its internal gearing that enables high supercharger performance even at low engine speeds.

At higher engine speeds, the exhaust gas driven turbocharger (with wastegate control) kicks in. Then the supercharger and turbocharger work in series. The supercharger is actuated by a solenoid clutch that is integrated in a module within the water pump. A control gate ensures that the flow of fresh air required for the operating point reaches the turbocharger or supercharger. In pure turbocharger mode the control gate is open. Then the air takes the familiar path of conventional turbocharged engines via the front intercooler and throttle valve and into the induction pipe. Starting at an engine speed of 3,500 rpm the supercharger turns all of the work over to the turbocharger.


On the new Golf, Volkswagen is converting the bestseller’s entire range of TDIs over to 16-valve common rail engines. Plans call for a power range from 66 kW / 90 PS to 125 kW / 170 PS. Right at market introduction, Volkswagen is offering the Golf with two 2.0 liter displacement common rail TDIs; they output 81 kW / 110 PS and 103 kW / 140 PS. The 110 PS version has a standard five-speed transmission, while the 140 PS variant is shifted via a six-speed transmission. Always on board: a diesel particulate filter (DPF). Besides its economy and agility, the new TDI engines also distinguish themselves by their good low-noise properties. Two balancing shafts (103 kW and higher) also put an end to undesirable vibrations. In addition, a newly designed engine bearing ensures that the engines are better isolated from the car body. Volkswagen will be offering the 6-speed DSG on both TDIs as an option.

2.0 TDI with 81 kW / 110 PS

The 110 PS strong TDI is debuting on the Golf. At the gas station the new TDI shines with an average fuel consumption of just 4.5 liters per 100 kilometers (119 g/km CO2) – that represents a reduction of 0.6 liter and matches the fuel economy of today’s Golf BlueMotion with 77 kW / 105 PS. However, the Golf TDI is still exceptionally spirited with its 110 PS: In just 10.7 seconds the Volkswagen accelerates to 100 km/h. Its top speed is 194 km/h. Furthermore, the 110-PS TDI impresses with a maximum torque of 250 Newton-meter that is available from 1,500 rpm. It delivers its 81 kW of power at 4,200 rpm.

2.0 TDI 103 kW / 140 PS

The 140-PS version of the new TDI is also exceptionally fuel efficient. Driven by this engine, the Golf 2.0 TDI only needs 4.9 liters of diesel to cover a hundred kilometers (129 g/km CO2), which is 0.6 liter less than its more powerful predecessor. This contrasts with a top speed of 209 km/h and an acceleration time of 9.3 seconds for the classic sprint to 100 km/h. In addition, the TDI shines at practically every engine speed with categorically high torque, since it already provides its maximum torque of 320 Newton-meter starting at 1,750 rpm.

Technology of the 110-PS and 140-PS TDIs in detail

Fuel induction in the two 1,968 cm displacement direct injection turbo-diesels is handled by the latest generation common rail system. Up to 1,800 bar injection pressure and special eight-hole injection nozzles deliver especially fine atomization of the diesel fuel. Control of the eight-hole injection nozzles is achieved by the latest generation of piezo in-line injectors. Electrically-controlled piezo crystals, assisted by a hydraulic element, inject fuel in fractions of a second. Compared to conventional solenoid valves, piezo technology enables more flexible injection processes with smaller and more precisely metered fuel volumes. Advantage: a very quiet and pleasant smooth running engine, exceptionally spontaneous response behavior and low fuel consumption and emissions.

Also affecting acoustics in a positive way is the completely maintenance-free toothed belt drive of the camshaft. Thanks to the conversion to common rail technology and numerous other acoustic measures such as a noise-damping film in the windshield (see also “Body” section), all Golf TDI versions are among the quietest diesel models of their class.


With the exception of the base versions, any of the gasoline and diesel engines may be paired with Volkswagen’s dual clutch transmission (DSG). Depending on the torque of the engine, the Golf either gets a 6-speed or 7-speed DSG. The extremely efficient and agile DSG is completely supplanting the classic torque-converter automatic in the Golf.

Both DSG versions are characterized by maximum economy and shifting dynamics, which has never been attained to this extent before. Besides having different numbers of forward gears, another way in which the DSGs differ technically is in their clutch types. While two dry clutches are used in the 7-speed DSG, the dual clutch of the 6-speed DSG runs wet in an oil bath. True of both transmissions: even the most experienced professional drivers cannot even approach a shifting speed approaching that of the DSG versions. Another fact: more than any other automatic, the dual clutch transmissions have the potential to reduce fuel consumption and thereby emissions. Compared to a manual transmission, gains may be as much as twelve percent, depending on the engine, and even twenty percent compared to an automatic with torque-converter clutch.

Meanwhile, both DSG variants are application-specific specialists. While the 6-speed DSG shines when paired with torque-strong engines (up to 350 Newton-meter), the 7-speed DSG is especially effective in combination with smaller engines (up to 250 Newton-meter).


For more than three decades, the Golf has mirrored technological progress. Numerous technologies –especially safety systems such as ABS, the airbag and ESP – were made available to millions of car drivers when they were introduced on the production Golf. The transfer of high-tech to high-volume production has been seamlessly advanced on the sixth generation Golf. This is especially evident in the large number of driver assistance systems now available in this class.

Volkswagen will be offering the new Golf, for the first time, with “DCC Adaptive Chassis Control”, “ACC Automatic Distance Control”, the parking assistant “Park Assist” and rearview camera “Rear Assist”. Also new aboard the Golf is a generation of ESP that has finer response, counter-steering boost and trailer stabilization.

Also further optimized is the dynamic safety chassis on the Golf. In front, a familiar MacPherson suspension is used with helical springs and telescoping dampers. In the rear, the new Golf – with its innovatively designed multi-link rear suspension – also ensures that ESP seldom needs to actively intervene.


In early 2008, “DCC Adaptive Chassis Control” was introduced for the first time on the Passat CC. By summer, Volkswagen had already transferred the system to the Scirocco. Now there is a DCC that has been adapted to the Golf. DCC Adaptive Chassis Control from Volkswagen continually reacts to the roadway and driving situation and modifies damper characteristics accordingly to significantly improve comfort. Thanks to the system’s high damping force potential, it was also possible to optimize comfort by specific tuning of the springs and stabilizers. To obtain an ideal system layout in the Golf, the chassis was lowered by ten millimeters together with DCC.

Alternatively, at the press of a button the DCC changes over to a sport chassis and boosts dynamic aspects of the new Volkswagen.

DCC system functions

DCC continually (up to a thousand times per second) adapts damping, individually for each wheel, to the specific roadway based on signals from the body and wheel displacement sensors. In accelerating, braking or steering operations, damping is stiffened in fractions of a second to optimally meet dynamic driving requirements and reduce pitch and roll motion. To do this, damper control evaluates signals from the electro-mechanical power steering, engine, transmission, braking system and driver assistance systems, and uses these to compute damping forces.

In performing this automatic adjustment, DCC enables better dynamic roll behavior (e.g. when changing lanes quickly), and – in situations that are less challenging in terms of driving dynamics – it offers significantly enhanced comfort. The result is that DCC Adaptive Chassis Control is able to resolve the conflict in goals between driving dynamics and driving comfort.

So that drivers can also modify system behavior according to their wishes, besides the “Normal” program with a medium base setting for damping (in which all control functions are fully active) DCC also offers the “Sport” and “Comfort” modes. These modes are activated by an additional button on the center console. If the “Sport” or “Comfort” program is active, this is indicated by the pushbutton switch itself, and – depending on the equipment line – by the instrument cluster as well. The last selected mode is saved and is automatically reactivated the next time the Golf is started.

“Sport” mode

The basic setting of suspension damping is significantly stiffer in “Sport” mode. In this mode, steering boost is adjusted to the preferences of the sport-minded driver.

“Comfort” mode

This mode is tuned for maximum driving comfort and is especially well suited for poor roadway conditions as well as city driving and long stretches of freeway.

DCC system components

Accelerometers and wheel displacement sensors continually measure the motions of the car body and wheels. Signals from these sensors are processed – together with other CAN data from steering, engine, transmission and braking system based on a newly developed control algorithm – in a powerful control module, which sends its commands at millisecond intervals to the four map-controlled dampers. They are capable of widely varying damping forces within fractions of a second – in both “hard” and “soft” directions – thereby enabling optimal system behavior.


Another assistance system derived from higher vehicle market segments is “ACC Automatic Distance Control”, which will be available for the first time in the Golf class. The name ACC stands for “Adaptive Cruise Control”. When “ACC” is activated the Golf brakes and accelerates the Golf automatically, whereby the driver can select a desired speed between 30 and 210 km/h.

ACC functionality

The easiest way to explain the laser-based ACC is to consider it as an extension of the cruise control system. The key feature here is the fact that “ACC Automatic Distance Control” not only maintains the speed preset by the driver, but also maintains the preset distance to traffic in front of the vehicle. The driver has the option in advance of selecting among three different driving programs. In “Normal mode” a mixture of optimal comfort and tracking behavior is offered. In “Sport mode”, on the other hand, the system responds dynamically. In “Comfort mode” the ACC turns the Golf into a classic cruiser.

Distance control employs a laser sensor located above the rearview mirror, and five laser beams, to continually scan the distance to the vehicle ahead as well as its speed. The system even works in curves. Based on measured values, the speed of the Golf is controlled via engine and brake interventions such that an ideal gap is maintained.

ACC control is activated by a lever on the steering column. The driver selects the desired speed and the following distance from five possible levels. If the driver accelerates manually, the system is overridden and control is interrupted. ACC is also immediately deactivated if the driver applies the brakes. At the system start, the multifunctional display (MFA) is used to preset which ACC program (“Normal”, “Sport” or “Comfort”) and which of the five selectable following distances should be activated. In addition, “ACC Automatic Distance Control” can be activated or deactivated using the steering column lever.

The driver is informed of the ACC’s system state on the multifunctional display. If the system is active, the target and actual distances are shown, as well as the preset speed. If the ACC system reaches its limits, visual and acoustic warning signals indicate that the driver should take over control.


Another high-end technology is the parking assistant “Park Assist” being offered for the first time on the Golf. The system is capable of nearly automatic reverse parking in parallel parking spaces. The driver just needs to operate the gas pedal, brake and clutch; meanwhile, the Golf steers into the space that has been pre-measured by sensor-based control. Whenever the steering process is interrupted by manual steering, “Park Assist” is deactivated. If the new Golf is ordered with “Park Assist”, the “Park Pilot” acoustic distance warning system (front and rear) and “Hill climb assistant” are also on board.

The intuitively operated system is activated by the press of a button. The function key is located right in front of the gearshift knob on the Golf.

While driving down the road at speeds up to 30 km/h and a distance of 0.5 to 1.5 meters to other parked cars, an ultrasonic sensor detects all parking spaces aligned with the roadway on either the left or right (depending on the turn signal direction that is set), and a control module computes the ideal parking path. The starting position is communicated to the driver via the multifunctional display. Then the driver shifts to reverse gear.

Now appearing on the display is the message “Steering control active! Watch your surroundings!” The driver only needs to accelerate, apply the clutch and brake during the rest of the parking process; the steering is handled by the Golf. As soon as the “Park Pilot” switches to a continuous signal, this indicates that the optimal distance to the next vehicle has been reached (approx. 20 centimeters). If the speed is too great and/or the driver makes any sort of steering wheel movement, “Park Assist” is momentarily deactivated. Generally, the entire parking process after shifting to reverse gear takes only 15 seconds.


The new generation of the Golf will be available for the first time with a rearview camera: “Rear Assist”. Similar to models like the Passat CC, the camera is located in the VW emblem on the tailgate. As soon as the reverse gear is engaged, the VW logo swivels upward, and with it the camera, to monitor the space behind the Golf from this position.

The system can be ordered in conjunction with the new touchscreen radio and radio-navigation systems RCD 510 and RNS 510. Camera images are transmitted to the touchscreen as real-time images. On this screen the path steered is also shown together with orientation lines. Even the smallest of obstacles are easy to recognize with the rearview camera, and the tightest of parking spaces can be mastered with millimeter accuracy. “Rear Assist” can also simplify the process of hooking up trailers.

The camera itself has a wide-angle lens. Horizontally, it acquires an angular range of 130 degrees, and vertically a range of 100 degrees. Moreover, a processor in the camera mirrors the image so that “left” on the Golf’s touchscreen corresponds to the “left” side.


If the Golf is ordered with “Park Pilot” or “Park Assist” together with a RCD 310, RNS 310, RCD 510 or RNS 510 radio or radio-navigation system, it is possible to access a visual display that is new on the Golf. This perspective shows a top view of the vehicle on the display and symbolically depicts potential obstacles in the front and rear areas at their locations.

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