Would you buy these over a Tiguan?
US-based Volkswagen enthusiasts received some upsetting news last year when the German automaker confirmed that the non-GTI Golf models, including the SportWagen and Alltrack, would not come to North America for the eighth-generation. Both the Volkswagen Golf SportWagen and Volkswagen Golf Alltrack were niche alternatives to a sedan or crossover, but neither had sales numbers even close to those of the Tiguan in the US market.
Knowing that these models will not come stateside only makes it more painful to see VW reveal an all-new Golf Variant and Golf Alltrack for the European market. Based on the new Golf hatchback, these wagon variants offer more storage space without the cumbersome height of a crossover.
"As a compact, spacious model, the Golf Variant has already impressed more than three million customers since its debut in 1993. The latest generation inspires with its beautiful design and, with the most advanced cockpit in its segment, takes a giant step towards digitalization. In addition, it scores high marks with efficient drives, maximum safety, and significantly more space - the perfect family car," says Jurgen Stackmann, Member of the Volkswagen Passenger Cars Board of Management.
"And those who are looking for something more sporty will love the new Golf Alltrack. As a crossover between the Golf Variant and an SUV, it offers the perfect combination of space, innovation, and fun even off paved roads thanks to its all-wheel-drive," he adds.
Both models feature an extended wheelbase, proving more space for passengers and their cargo. The Variant is the more aggressive of the two, especially in R-Line guise, but the Alltrack features some cool details of its own, including specific bumpers and greater ground clearance.
A range of eTSI engines power both models, all paired with a 48-volt mild-hybrid system routed through a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. VW says the seven-speed DSG transmission allows a seamless transition between driving and coasting. For fans of diesel, the Golf Variant will have several TDI engine options as well.
Inside, both models look broadly similar to the standard Golf, though the R-Line interior for the Variant looks like it offers GTI levels of sporty flavor, especially with those awesome sport seats.
These two models serve as an agonizing reminder that wagon sales in the US are almost nonexistent, and crossovers will continue to grow in popularity. VW North America is squarely focused on the new Tiguan, which arrives in 2021 as a 2022 model year vehicle.