2018 Volkswagen Golf Hatchback

City mpg:
Highway mpg:

MPG estimates are provided by the EPA.

2018 Volkswagen Golf Hatchback Overview

The standard features of the Volkswagen Golf TSI S include 1.8L I-4 170hp intercooled turbo engine, 5-speed manual transmission with overdrive, 4-wheel anti-lock brakes (ABS), side seat mounted airbags, Side Curtain Protection curtain 1st and 2nd row overhead airbags, airbag occupancy sensor, Climatic air conditioning, 15" aluminum wheels, cruise control, ABS and driveline traction control, electronic stability.

2018 Volkswagen
Golf Hatchback

Starting at: $20,910

  • Manufacturer Offer

    Financing Offer : 1.9% APR for 60 months on select Volkswagen Golf models

    * Read full offer details
    Applies to select new 2018 Volkswagen Golf.

    * Disclaimer(s)

    • Truth in Lending Act Disclosure: Down payment will vary with APR and credit. For example, 1.9% APR with $2,500 down payment provides for 60 monthly payments of $17.48 per $1000 financed for qualified buyers. 1.9% APR for a term of 24 months corresponds to a monthly cost of $42.5 per $1000 financed. 1.9% APR for a term of 36 months corresponds to a monthly cost of $28.6 per $1000 financed. 1.9% APR for a term of 39 months corresponds to a monthly cost of $26.46 per $1000 financed. 1.9% APR for a term of 42 months corresponds to a monthly cost of $24.63 per $1000 financed. 1.9% APR for a term of 48 months corresponds to a monthly cost of $21.65 per $1000 financed. 3.4% APR for a term of 72 months corresponds to a monthly cost of $15.37 per $1000 financed. 3.9% APR for a term of 75 months corresponds to a monthly cost of $15.05 per $1000 financed. The rates described are for estimation purposes only; you may not be able to finance at this rate.

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  • Manufacturer Offer

    Military Offer : $500 customer cash on select Volkswagen models

    * Read full offer details
    Applies to multiple models.

    * Disclaimer(s)

    • Volkswagen of America, Inc. will pay a $500 Military and First Responders Bonus for qualified active duty U.S. Military service members, U.S. Military Veterans (Veterans must be within 24 months of active duty), U.S. Military retirees, First Responders (Police Officer, Sheriff/Sherriff's Deputy, Correctional Officer, State Trooper, Federal Law Enforcement Officer, Firefighter (career or volunteer), EMT, Paramedic, 911 Dispatcher/Operator) and their family household members who purchase or lease a new, unused MY14-MY19 Volkswagen model (excluding Golf R) through participating dealers from May 10, 2018 to January 2, 2019. Proof of military/first responder eligibility and residency of family household member (if applicable) required. Bonus applied toward MSRP and is not available for cash. Fleet customers are not eligible. One bonus per VIN. Eligible customers may receive this bonus on up to two Volkswagen vehicles per year. See your local Volkswagen dealer or, for general product information, call 1-800-Drive-VW. Copyright 2018 Volkswagen of America, Inc.

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  • Manufacturer Offer

    Lease: $219 per month for 36 months. $2,499 due at signing for select 2018 Volkswagen Golf TSI S

    * Read full offer details
    Applies to select new 2018 Volkswagen Golf.

    * Disclaimer(s)

    • Lease a 2018 Golf S with automatic transmission for $219* a month. 36-month lease, $2,499 due at signing. Excludes tax, title, license, options and dealer fees. No security deposit required. For highly qualified customers through Volkswagen Credit.

      *Closed end lease financing available through January 2, 2019 for a new, unused 2018 Golf S with automatic transmission, on approved credit to highly qualified customers by Volkswagen Credit. Monthly lease payment based on MSRP of $22,905 and destination charges less a suggested dealer contribution resulting in a capitalized cost of $18,798.50. Excludes tax, title, license, options, and dealer fees. Amount due at signing includes first month’s payment, capitalized cost reduction, and acquisition fee of $675. Monthly payments total $7,884. Your payment will vary based on final negotiated price. At lease end, lessee responsible for disposition fee of $395, $.20/mile over 30,000 miles and excessive wear and use. Offer not valid in Puerto Rico. See your Volkswagen dealer for details or, for general product information, call 1-800-Drive-VW.

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  • Air conditioning
  • Speed control
  • Power windows
  • 1-touch down
  • 1-touch up
  • Remote keyless entry
  • Illuminated entry
  • Tilt steering wheel
  • Telescoping steering wheel
  • Driver vanity mirror
  • Passenger vanity mirror
  • Front beverage holders
  • Rear beverage holders
  • Overhead console
  • Driver door bin
  • Passenger door bin
  • Rear door bins
  • AM/FM radio
  • Radio data system
  • Steering wheel mounted audio controls
  • Speakers - 8
  • Wireless phone connectivity - Bluetooth
  • 1st row LCD monitors - 1
  • Primary LCD size - 6.5"
  • Diversity antenna
  • Smart device integration - VW Car-Net App-Connect
  • Basic warranty - 72 months/72,000miles
  • Powertrain warranty - 72 months/72,000miles
  • Corrosion perforation warranty - 84 months/100,000miles
  • Roadside assistance coverage - 36 months/36,000miles
  • Max seating capacity - 5
  • Front seats - bucket
  • Power driver seat
  • Manual driver lumbar support
  • Power passenger seat
  • Front center armrest
  • Manual passenger lumbar support
  • Rear seats - bench
  • Split folding rear seat
  • Rear seat center armrest
  • Leather shift knob
  • Leather steering wheel
  • Engine displacement - 1.8 L
  • Engine horsepower - 170hp @ 4,500RPM
  • Engine torque - 184 lb.-ft. @ 1,600RPM
  • Engine bore x stroke - 82.5mm x 84.1mm (3.25" x 3.31")
  • Compression ratio - 9.60 to 1
  • Payload - 463kg (1,021lbs)
  • GVWR - 1,870kg (4,123lbs)
  • Exterior length - 4,257mm (167.6")
  • Exterior body width - 1,798mm (70.8")
  • Exterior height - 1,478mm (58.2")
  • Wheelbase - 2,637mm (103.8")
  • Turning radius - 5.5m (17.9')
  • Front legroom - 1,046mm (41.2")
  • Rear legroom - 904mm (35.6")
  • Front headroom - 975mm (38.4")
  • Rear headroom - 968mm (38.1")
  • Front shoulder room - 1,420mm (55.9")
  • Rear shoulder room - 1,369mm (53.9")
  • Passenger volume - 2,648L (93.5 cu.ft.)
  • Interior cargo volume - 493 L (17 cu.ft.)
  • Interior maximum cargo volume - 1,521 L (54 cu.ft.)
  • Rear cargo - liftgate
  • Power door mirrors
  • Heated door mirrors
  • Turn signal indicator mirrors
  • Door mirrors - body-color
  • Bumpers - body-color
  • Engine liters - 1.8
  • Compressor - intercooled turbo
  • Cylinder configuration - I-4
  • Horsepower - 170hp @ 4,500RPM
  • Torque - 184 lb.-ft. @ 1,600RPM
  • Number of valves - 16
  • Variable valve control
  • Engine location - front
  • Recommended fuel - Regular Unleaded
  • Transmission - 5 speed manual
  • Drive type - front-wheel
  • Fuel economy combined - 29mpg
  • Fuel tank capacity - 13.2gal.
  • Fuel economy city - 25mpg
  • Fuel economy highway - 34mpg
  • 4 wheel disc brakes
  • ABS brakes
  • Brake assist
  • Dual front impact airbags
  • Dual front side impact airbags
  • Overhead airbag
  • Occupant sensing airbag
  • Panic alarm
  • Ignition disable
  • Electronic stability
  • Traction control
  • Anti-whiplash front head restraints
  • Four wheel independent suspension
  • Front anti-roll bar
  • Rear anti-roll bar
  • Power steering
  • Speed-sensing steering
  • Alloy wheels
  • Front tires - 195/65HR15.0
  • Rear tires - 195/65HR15.0
  • Wheel size - 15"
  • Fully automatic headlights
  • Delay-off headlights
  • Variably intermittent wipers
  • Rain sensing wipers
  • Speed sensitive wipers
  • Rear window wiper
  • Rear window defroster
  • Front reading lights
  • Rear reading lights
  • Display - analog
  • Tachometer
  • Compass
  • Outside temperature display
  • Low tire pressure warning
  • Trip computer
  • Exterior parking camera rear


  MSRP Engine Transmission City/Hwy mpg
TSI S 2018 Volkswagen Golf Hatchback TSI S Search New $20,910   170-hp 1.8L 4-cyl  5-spd man.  25 / 34  
TSI S 2018 Volkswagen Golf Hatchback TSI S Search New $22,010   170-hp 1.8L 4-cyl  6-spd auto  24 / 33  
TSI SE 2018 Volkswagen Golf Hatchback TSI SE Search New $23,655   170-hp 1.8L 4-cyl  5-spd man.  25 / 34  
TSI SE 2018 Volkswagen Golf Hatchback TSI SE Search New $24,755   170-hp 1.8L 4-cyl  6-spd auto  24 / 33  


Driving Impression

New Car Test Drive

We put more than 700 miles on a 4Motion SportWagen in one week, and didn’t want to leave it. We averaged 30 mpg, most of it on a 70-mph interstate, and the 1.8-liter turbo and paddle-shifting six-speed DSG transmission were flawlessly smooth. They achieved that kind of perfection you want in a car like this: you didn’t know they were there, but they always were there for whatever you needed or wanted. Seamless acceleration with no turbo lag. We can’t remember the last time we drove a four-cylinder that was this smooth and effortless at 75 mph.

The ride, the clear and intuitive instrumentation, there’s nothing we would even nitpick. The SportWagen was an S model with no options, and there was nothing we missed. The infotainment, with satellite radio, was just fine. It lacked navigation, but we had our cellphone with mobile apps.

With any Golf, the handling and drivability match the merits of the powertrain. Maybe the S hatchback won’t corner like a Mazda3, but the GTI will, and the R goes beyond that.

We also got seat time in a Golf with the five-speed manual transmission, whose throws of the lever are rather long. The six-speed manual is stronger than the five-speed, and that sixth gear has a taller ratio, so the revs at freeway speed are lower and the car quieter. But still, the six-speed DSG automatic is so good that it’s our choice.

The sporty GTI is perfectly drivable to the grocery store, even with its firmer suspension and quicker steering. So it’s more fun and satisfying out in the twisties, if you like to play. And again you get those crisp DSG shifts with paddles.

Golf R is for serious players, with its 292 horsepower as opposed to the GTI’s 220 hp, and its aggressive suspension tuning. There are four driving modes (Comfort, Normal, Race, and Individual) that adjust the throttle, transmission and steering response, and the firmness of the ride. The Individual mode allows separate setting of these things. Most people don’t and can’t get that specific, and even if they did, things change with each section of the road. So it seems like Individual mode would really only make sense on the track, and changed with each track.

Walk Around

New Car Test Drive

Volkswagen is stubborn in its clinging to pure rather than trendy styling, and bless their hearts for it. The Golf is clean, especially the SportWagen, and it’s a great relief. It’s not edgy, it’s smooth. No attitude. It mirrors the engineering.

That said, the GTI does bring some sport and maybe attitude. Its stance is lower, on the sport suspension, while the red brake calipers show between the spokes of the 17-inch alloy wheels. There are side skirts and a rear diffuser, as well. And you can’t have a diffuser without showing your attitude.

The Alltrack has some exterior elements that the cleaner SportWagen doesn’t have: cladding on its lower sides, foglamps, a honeycomb grille, and its own bumpers.

Interior Overview

New Car Test Drive

The cabin is as clean as the body, functional and spacious. The materials are not expensive but don’t feel cheap. The instrumentation is intuitive and easy to read and operate. The driver doesn’t have to work to understand his car, unlike so many German cars. The centerstack is oriented toward the driver, and the gauges are hooded so there’s no glare. Some thinking has clearly gone into the design.

The GTI and Golf R have a sport steering wheel and shift knob, stainless steel pedals, and an instrument panel with no-nonsense gauges. The sport seats are a plaid fabric, with a black headliner and red ambient lighting.

We got great seat time during one week in a 4Motion SportWagen, a long road trip, and we found the cabin to totally easy, comfortable, relaxing, and very quiet. The powertrain and suspension had much to do with that, of course.

The front seats are the best, perfectly supportive and easy to adjust for all body sizes. The leatherette feels a bit rubbery, while the less expensive but rugged plaid upholstery feels just fine.

There three touchscreens: base 5.0 inch, upper trim 6.5 inch, and top option 8.0 inch. This big screen gets its own new infotainment system.

It might be a bit tight in the back seat for three passengers, but it’s easy to climb in and out. In the hatchback, there are 22.8 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seat, that’s quite a lot. The seatbacks lower with a quick pull release, to open things up for 52.7 cubic feet. Bring in the SportWagen, and you have 30.4 cubic feet behind the rear seat, and 66.5 with it folded, although unfortunately it doesn’t fold completely flat.


New Car Test Drive

Smooth and refined, all the Golf models are more than contenders in their respective classes. The 30-mpg 4Motion SportWagen with the DSG offers a lot of value: Smooth ride and silent, clean cabin. It offers everything the Alltrack does except big wheels and cladding. The Golf R comes out favorably in many areas when compared to the Ford Focus RS and Subaru WRX STI. For years the STI was the star of the pocket-rocket class, now the Focus RS is, but the Golf R deserves more attention.

Sam Moses contributed to this report.

Model Lineup

New Car Test Drive

The Golf hatchback comes as S, SE, and SEL; the GTI as S, SE, and Autobahn; and then there’s the Golf R, the SportWagen and Alltrack.

Standard equipment on the Golf S includes power windows and locks, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, cruise control, power-reclining front seats, a 6.5-inch infotainment screen, and 16-inch steel wheels. Golf SE adds an 8.0-inch screen, leatherette upholstery, and 16-inch alloy wheels. Golf SEL adds 17-inch alloy wheels, a moonroof, dual-zone automatic climate control, and ambient cabin lighting.

Golf SportWagen comes with VW’s 4Motion all-wheel drive available in a package including 16-inch alloy wheels and heated seats. Golf Alltrack adds leatherette upholstery, and on the full-tile Alltrack SEL there’s a Fender sound system and 18-inch alloy wheels, along with the extra half-inch of ground clearance.

Golf GTI S is equipped like the regular Golf. The GTI SE adds LED headlamps, 8.0-inch infotainment screen, a blind spot monitor, and automatic emergency braking. The GTI Autobahn has leather, moonroof, and active dampers.

The Golf R has Volkswagen’s Digital Cockpit, a high-resolution LCD screen that replaces conventional gauges. It’s a system that came from Audi where it’s been praised. Like the GTI, the adaptive suspension with active dampers is optional.

Available safety features include automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, park distance control, and automatic headlamps.

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