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All-new VW Golf Mk7 unveiled

Did the Mk6 model really need replacing?

Volkswagen unveiled the all-new 2013 Golf to a private selection of media at the New National Gallery in Berlin, Germany last night.

We knew the Mk7 Golf was coming, but we can’t help thinking it’s a strange move from VW. The current Mk6 Golf has only been on sale for 4 years and certainly doesn’t look, feel perform or handle like it needs to be replaced. Typically the Gold models have had a 6 or 8 year life cycle, so this is certainly a short change, though VW makes claims that the new model was required due to pressing emissions legislations.

Visually the layman would probably struggle to tell the Mk6 and Mk7 apart, but there is definitely a styling change in effect. The general dimensions and shape are very similar to the Mk6, but there’s a lower nose, with the front end now styled more like the Jetta. There’s a sharp styling crease down the sides of the car, while the rear adopts some sharper lights and a more upright hatchback.

It’s a shame, but in our eyes the new model doesn’t have the same solid look as the outgoing model – the Mk6 had a squat stance that made it look as if it were hewn from a lump of granite, not so with the Mk7. We hope the ride quality is good though, given that the blue car in the images above seems to be riding on enormous wheels. Given the size of the body we’d estimate them to be either 18 or 19 inch alloys – massive for a family car.

The interior has always been what sets the Golf apart from the rivals though, and the Mk7 continues that trend. There is a new driver-focused centre console, with a large 6-inch monochrome or 8-inch colour screen angled toward the driver along with the major controls. The larger screen variants have a proximity sensor included which switches the screen from display mode to input mode when a finger is detected near the system. As always the look is very uncluttered and will doubtless be an ergonomic delight.

The Mk7 Golf uses the VAG MQB platform which underpins the new Audi A3 and new Seat Leon, and means that the new Golf is around 100 kg lighter than the predecessor model for model. This, combined with a lower centre of gravity means the handling should be improved as well.

Engine choices are the same as the current lineup with 1.2 and 1.4 litre TSI petrol engines and two 2.0 litre diesel engines with 100 or 140 bhp at launch. The range will expand with a 1.8 litre TSI engine and 170 bhp diesel model, along with a smaller 1.6 litre diesel for the Bluemotion which should manage over 80 mpg and just 85 g/km of CO2.

There will also be GTi and R models along in late 2013 with a new 2.0 litre petrol turbo engine producing around 225 and 280 bhp respectively.

The public debut of the Mk7 Golf will be at the Paris Motor Show at the end of September.

Images courtesy of VW


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About Tim Oldland

Contributing Editor - Long time petrolhead, automotive design engineer and journalist. Also Social Media Manager for the ecurie25 Group - Tim has worked in the automotive sector for many years, but has been a fan of anything with 2 or 4... read more