The Upgraded VW Golf 8.5: America’s Unseen Transformation

Enhanced hatchback features superior upgrades.

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the original Golf, Volkswagen has revealed the newest version, known as the upgraded Golf Mk8.5. Boasting a sleeker design, advanced features, and improved fuel efficiency, this renowned hatchback is set to make waves in Europe. Unfortunately, it will not be available in America, where the popular GTI and R models are still in demand. However, for the sake of staying informed and keeping up with this legendary model, let’s explore what we’re missing out on.

In terms of appearance, the Golf and its wagon counterpart, the Golf Variant, receive modest aesthetic enhancements. Up front, a fresh bumper and modernized LED headlights take center stage, appearing slimmer than their predecessors. The headlight cluster has also been narrowed, particularly as it approaches the grille. For those interested, more powerful headlights are available as an upgrade to the standard LEDs, complete with a luminous VW emblem.

Volkswagen’s IQ.Light Matrix headlights, which provide a powerful 500-meter range of visibility at night, can also be added as an option. This package also features modern-looking 3D LED taillights and an illuminated emblem of the iconic VW logo on the front grille. Among the various options in the Golf series, the plug-in GTE stands out with its dynamic front and rear bumpers and stylish 17-inch Richmond wheels. Additionally, four fresh metallic color choices are now available, including Anemone Blue Metallic, Oyster Silver, Crystal Ice Blue, and Grenadilla Black.

The recent update has aligned the Golf 8 with the new Tiguan and Passat, both of which were uncovered last year. As a result, the Golf 8 now boasts a similar design and features as its fellow Volkswagen models.

The eHybrid boasts a second-generation plug-in hybrid system with a total of 201 horsepower. This power is then transmitted to the front axle through a specially engineered six-speed DSG transmission that is specifically tailored for plug-in hybrid configurations. For the more dynamic and athletic GTE model, the power is ramped up to an impressive 268 hp.

As a component of the update, the turbocharged 1.5-liter motor has been matched with a 19.7 kWh battery, boasting an asserted electric-only range of 62 miles (according to the WLTP cycle). When connected to a DC charger, the plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) can obtain up to 50 kW of charging capacity. Volkswagen states that swift charging and a robust range enable the eHybrid and GTE to function as fully electric automobiles in numerous scenarios. The alleged overall mileage of 620 miles is exceedingly remarkable.

A range of eTSI motors utilizing 48-volt technology and Active Cylinder Management are additionally on offer. The 1.5-liter has power outputs of 114 horsepower and 147 horsepower, while a 2.0-liter boasting 201 horses will be introduced at a later date. There will also be various versions of turbodiesel engines with different levels of performance.

The upgraded infotainment system has undergone a complete overhaul, utilizing the newest MIB4 modular technology for both hardware and software. This revamp not only enhances performance, but also offers a more user-friendly experience thanks to an improved menu layout and updated graphics. Two display options are available: a standard 10.4-inch option and a larger 12.9-inch screen.

Fortunately, the clunky touch sliders that were previously used for adjusting audio and climate settings have been replaced with a more user-friendly design that also includes illumination for easier use in low light conditions. Additionally, physical buttons have been added to the steering wheel as a replacement for the previous touch-capacitive controls, providing a sense of relief for current Volkswagen drivers. For an additional fee, a head-up display can be included on the Golf and Golf Variant models.

Furthermore, the latest models of Golf are equipped with a 10.2-inch Digital Cockpit Pro. This feature is operated through the newly designed buttons on the steering wheel and can be personalized to display various data such as navigation directions or other relevant details according to the driver’s liking.

Every variant, including the basic version, comes equipped with an automatic climate control system, front and rear park assist features, LED headlights, cruise control, keyless entry, and a Digital Cockpit. Following that is the Golf Life model, which includes a wireless device charger, ambient lighting, adaptive cruise control, and 16-inch alloy wheels.

One could opt for one of the higher-end models, such as the refined Style variant or the more athletic R-Line edition. The Style option boasts elegant chrome accents, 17-inch wheels, a customizable 30-color ambient lighting system, a driver’s seat with power adjustments, and a rear-view camera. In contrast, the R-Line boasts sleek gloss black exterior features, 17-inch sport wheels, and premium sports seats adorned with R-Line upholstery.

The GTE is equipped with a variety of upgrades to its appearance, including a three-zone climate control system, a leather-wrapped sports steering wheel adorned with blue and black touches, and premium chequered sports seats.

Unfortunately, VW’s popular model for everyday use will not be available in America, which is truly unfortunate. However, we can take comfort in the fact that we will be receiving the revised Golf GTI, although it will no longer come with a manual transmission option.

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