What’s HE got that I haven’t?
With a cheaper Golf Cabrio likely to cut into its sales, VW’s steellidded convertible adds value
WITH a Golf Cabrio en route, a makeover for Volkswagen’s Eos should have the hardtop convertible literally connecting with customers.
Bluetooth and media connectivity are notable absences in the current car. They weren’t a big deal when it was launched here in 2007 but the subsequent take-up of both technologies means they are now expected.
They come with a facelift to give the Eos the wide horizontal grille that marks the latestVW look, a sharper edge to the bootlid and new LED tail-lights.
The extra features come at a $500 premium to the existing models, putting the 103kW/ 320Nm turbo diesel at $49,990 and the 155kW/280Nm petrol engine at $51,990.
Fuel consumption on both engines is down by 0.2L to 5.9 litres/100km for the diesel and 7.7 litres/100km for the petrol.
But a manual gearbox is no longer an option. VW spokesman Karl Gehling says the uptake of manuals on the 5500 cars sold here since launch was just 15 per cent, so it was deleted for the update.
This makes the six-speed DSG semi-automated transmission the only choice— but it’s not a bad one.
The five-piece hardtop roof includes a sunroof so owners can choose between a coupe look, coupe with sunroof open or pure open-air convertible.
The roof takes about 25 seconds to open or close. A 205-litre chute’’ in the centre of the boot is spacious enough to take soft baggage, providing it can be squeezed through the fairly narrow opening.
Options run from metallic paint at $700 to $900 for the self-parking software, $1500 for electric front seats, $2000 for a premium 600W sound system, $2100 for bi-xenon headlights with dynamic cornering mode and $2500 for satnav.
Price and perspective will differentiate buyers of the Eos and the coming Golf convertible. At least that’s the view ofVWmanaging director Anke Koeckler.
We don’t see much crossover between the (Eos) hardtop and soft-top,’’ she says.
The Golf appeals to younger, more budgetconscious buyers than the Eos. For them, the soft-top system is OK. People who buy the Eos tend to be older and appreciate the coupe comfort they get when the hardtop roof is up.
They probably don’t put the top down as often as a Golf Cabrio owner. They both want to be seen but the Eos driver won’t do it if it’s too cold.’’
Spot the difference:
VW’s Eos (above) and its cheaper Golf Cabriolet