full disclosure I’ve been an auto
journalist for 15 years and the Volkswagen Golf and GTI have
consistently been favorites for their blend of peppy road manners hatchback
practicality and bottom line accessibility and it’s not just me
the cars.com editors have given them plenty of awards through the years from
the GTI’s 2015 cheep Speed Challenge victory to the 2018 models most fun to
drive award while the Gulf hasn’t changed much throughout the years I have
I’m a mom now I have three kids and I Drive a minivan does it still hold a
little piece of my heart absolutely but more specifically is it
practical enough in some way to fit into my mom life the golf uses a turbocharged
1.8 liter 4-cylinder that although not as spunky as the 2-liter in the GTI
feels like more than enough in stop-and-go driving it’s Sprint’s to
life and the five-speed manual makes it extra lively the shifter has a smooth
short action making it easy and fun to plow through the gears a 6-speed
automatic is optional in terms of road manners the golf feels sporty and fun
but in an accessible comfortable way its ride is firm but not harsh and it slices
through city streets and highway ramps with a corner hugging agility that
rivals the skateboard like moves of the Mini Cooper hardtop the Gulf’s pepin
agile handling combined with its direct sharp steering makes it much more
engaging to drive than your average compact economy hatchback the golf was
refreshed for 2018 but it’s hard to tell that from the outside where the changes
are very subtle inside the changes are more noticeable starting with this
multimedia system the dashboard has been revised to make room for a new
multimedia system with bigger screens bass models get this 6.5 inch display
and SC models get an 8 inch touchscreen the 6.5 inch screen is decent for a bass
system it’s not too small and has clear buttons and an easy menu structure on
the plus side apple carplay and android auto smartphone integration are standard
on the negative side there’s no satellite radio option in this version
VW also said it upgraded the cabin materials this year but it feels pretty
basic and in some places budget like all this black plastic little extras
like this sporty brushed chrome trim and these comfortably bolstered seats make
it stand out you do miss out on a few things with the base model however the
higher term model gets leatherette and heated front seats in back room is
decent for two passengers and when I had two I was able to fit two of my three
kids back here without a problem one in a booster one and a forward-facing
convertible installing the forward-facing convertible was really
easy thanks to these exposed latch anchors the 2018 Gulf starts at around
$21,000 and the answer to my initial question about it fitting into my
practical mom life is a big yes the Gulf delivers the best of both worlds it’s
fun to drive and engaging but it also easily fits to car seats in its back
seat while it wouldn’t work as my daily driver as my second car I’d fight my
husband for carp will drop off duty to drive it you

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Dennis Veasley

19 thoughts on “2018 Volkswagen Golf Review – Cars.com”

  1. As a mom you'd probably want to upgrade to the Golf Sport Wagen/Alltrack for not much more, if you're going the car route…manual or auto?

  2. We own 3 VW Golfs 2011, 2016 and 2017. All 100 % reliable. I do maintain them properly . Also purchased all brand new.

  3. The Golf looks 5 years old already ,yawn.. What hasn't changed is the check engine lights that come on randomly …

  4. Totally agree! I do zipcar and enterprise so I try a lot of cars. No question for a compact it is much a better drive than the rest. Little classy package. I’d buy one if I had parking!

  5. My sister has a base model 2015. She loves it for the same reasons. As a passenger, it impressed me, given its price, with a high quality, spacious interior, zippy performance, comfort, handling, and utility. A good balance of a lot of pluses.

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