Seven iron a stroke of ge­nius

The next Golf’s fa­mil­iar ap­pear­ance masks pro­found changes through­out

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Car News -

THE game of Golf changes its rules early next year as Volk­swa­gen tees off with a new, cheaper and more eco­nom­i­cal ver­sion.

Suc­ceed­ing a model that in Novem­ber made his­tory by out­selling Holden’s Com­modore, the Mark VII Golf is ex­pected to fur­ther boost Aus­tralian sales. The rea­son? It marks thevw­badge de­but of the group’s mod­u­lar Mqb­plat­form.

Some 50 per cent of Golf sales are of the most ex­pen­sive vari­ants, in­clud­ing the GTI. How­ever, the lower costs as­so­ci­ated with themqb plat­form could trans­late to cheaper Golf vari­ants.

MQBIS es­sen­tially one ve­hi­cle plat­form and a set se­ries of com­po­nents that can serve nu­mer­ous car mod­els and can cut up to 8 per cent off the build cost. . It will be seen first on Audi’s A3 and then on up to 60 mod­els from VW, Audi, Skoda and Seat.

The Golf VII, which de­buts at the Paris mo­tor show in Septem­ber, starts pro­duc­tion in Oc­to­ber and reaches Australia in March. Don’t ex­pect a dras­tic vis­ual change, be­cause much of the Golf’s pre­mium ca­chet and strong re­sale are built on its styling con­ti­nu­ity.

The Golf VII will be slightly longer but no­tice­ably lower and wider than the cur­rent model — and will be pow­ered by an un­prece­dented va­ri­ety of driv­e­trains. Mqbper­mits front and all-wheel drive, hy­brid and elec­tric power.

Golf will get a new turbo petrol en­gine fam­ily var­i­ously dis­plac­ing 1.0, 1.2, 1.4 and 2.0 litres. A 103kw/250nm vari­ant of the 1.4 with cylin­der de­ac­ti­va­tion is claimed to re­duce fuel con­sump­tion by up to 20 per cent. It is de­signed to run on two cylin­ders and reen­gage the other pair in re­sponse to the ac­cel­er­a­tor.

Ex­pect also all-new 1.6- and 2.0-litre diesel en­gines that meet rig­or­ous Euro-6 emis­sion stan­dards. Vw­claims CO emis­sions are down by 45 per cent in these ver­sions while per­for­mance is up by an av­er­age of 20 per cent.

The cream of the crop is the turbo petrol en­gine in the GTI and R mod­els. Sug­ges­tions are strong that the range will ex­pand to start with a front­drive GT, an all-wheel-drive GTI and an even more po­tent AWDR.

Neil Dowl­ing

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