I’ve had it a week now and even though it is missing one of the factory fitted options I requested so far so good.
Last week my company car, a VW Golf TDi 1.6 Bluemotion SE arrived without the parking assist, which led to a number of phone calls to the supplying garage and the leasing company. At the time I thought it was missing two options, even the hapless delivery driver who tried to pass himself off as something more thought it was missing the rear view camera (I later found that it was installed) but one thing I can’t seem to work out, apart from the fact it made it to my door with out the parking assist, is that the rear view camera only appears as an option WITH the parking sensors and parking assist. Someone somewhere cocked up.
Why all these fancy gadgets? Well my wife is learning to drive and takes her test soon, so hopefully she will be able to use the car when I’m not here as I often cycle to work. Parking a new car can be difficult so these little things will give her confidence.
Anyway, driving the car is fun, smooth and quiet. Much quieter than the previous Golf which sounded like a tractor with a broken exhaust.
Inside the layout is almost entirely the same but with a few tweaks here and there. The quality of the interior plastics and coverings is better in my opinion, softer and more shiny. I also opted for a multi-function leather steering wheel which is a hundred times better than the standard plastic rubbish one which is made from old carrier bags. Also I’ve added sat nav with integrated HDD (16GB), DVD player and SD card reader – this will be really handy for downloading podcasts and such like to listen on the way home from Hurlsey.
Sat Nav is never a perfect thing and this one is no exception. It has trouble at roundabouts, always telling you to keep left even when you are driving round further than 180 degrees. However, that is the only problem I’ve found. The built in traffic updates re-route you quickly and painlessly. We opted to use it on the way to see my Mum for Christmas, it took us through London rather than round it. we made it up to Northants much quicker, so it gets to be trusted again.
So what is the Bluemotion stuff all about? Well it means a low tax band for one, as it only pumps out 107 g/km and lower fuel consumption. This is done through having longer gears, some aerodynamic tweaks to the front and underside of the body. They also add low rolling resistance tyres. The regular Golf TDi is pretty good on the fuel consumption as it is but the lower emissions take the Bluemotion down a category.
Another way in which fuel is conserved is with the Auto Stop-Start feature that has been advertised as being on all new Audis. This turns off the engine when you come to a stop and take your foot off the clutch. Then when you replace your foot, engine starts up again – this will only work when the engine is at a reasonable working temperature and not when you are trying to park. Don’t ask me how it knows, it just does – which is also freaky when the headlight configuration changes when your arrive home and park.
The battery is kept topped up by regenerative breaking – something I think will be on all cars very soon. The lowered and more sporty suspension means that there is less roll in the corners too, but surprisingly little difference in comfort when driving over potholes and bumps. The Golf, is if nothing else, a solid car. It feels strong safe and
In all I’m happy with the car but not with whomever forgot my option. I’m hoping a new car will arrive at some point but wonder how long I can hold out that sort of hope.
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