Golf Estate

The new Golf Estate – which launches in the UK on 10 August 2007 – is the third incarnation of Volkswagen’s popular load-carrier.  The previous model ceased production in January 2006, after going on sale in August 1998. 

This latest generation of Golf Estate brings additional versatility and load-carrying ability to the Golf range.  Loadspace is 505 litres with the seats in place, rising to a maximum of 1,550 litres when the rear seats are folded flat into the boot floor.  A wide tailgate and low loading lip boost practicality while a chrome grille section – similar to the ‘face’ on the Eos – gives the new car an imposing and stylish appearance.

Three trim levels are available – S, SE and Sportline – along with three engines, a 1.6-litre 102 PS petrol and 1.9-litre 105 PS and 2.0-litre 140 PS TDI units.  A DSG automatic gearbox is available with the two diesel powerplants.

All models are generously equipped with Climatic air conditioning, electric windows and door mirrors, a radio/CD player and remote central locking featuring as standard.  Safety is also key: all models benefit from ABS with HBA (Hydraulic Brake Assist) and ESP (Electronic Stabilisation Programme) as well as front, side and curtain airbag systems and whiplash-optimised head restraints for front passengers.

The first Golf Estate went on sale in 1993; since then, more than 1.2 million units have been sold worldwide.  From the start of right hand drive sales in 1994, 33,577 Golf Estates have found homes with UK buyers.

SUMMARY

  • International debut at Geneva Motor Show 6 March 2007; launched in Germany in April and in the UK in August 2007
  • Third generation of Golf Estate – 1.2 million units of previous models sold
  • Key dimensions are 4,556 mm length; 1,781 mm width; 1,504 mm height; and wheelbase of 2,578 mm
  • Load capacity is a capacious 505 litre with seats in place, rising to a maximum of 1,550 litres with the rear seats folded. The Golf Estate can accommodate loads of up to 1.74 m in length and weighing up to 629 kg
  • Retains the Golf’s acclaimed ride and handling characteristics, with four-link independent rear suspension
  • Electro-mechanical power steering with speed-dependent assistance is standard on all models
  • Class-leading body rigidity for improved safety, dynamics and refinement
  • Engine line-up includes one petrol and two diesel units: 1.6-litre 102 PS; 1.9-litre 105 PS TDI; and 2.0-litre TDI 140 PS. Both diesel engines can be specified with or without Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) and with the option of Volkswagen’s advanced six-speed DSG automatic gearbox (with DPF only)
  • Comprehensive standard safety features include latest generation ESP (Electronic Stabilisation Programme) with EDL (Electronic Differential Lock) and ASR (Traction Control); plus ABS with HBA (Hydraulic Brake Assist); automatic hazard light illumination under heavy braking; three-point safety belts for all occupants; whiplash optimised front head restraints; twin front and side airbags plus curtain airbag system for front and rear passengers
  • Offered in three trim levels: S, SE and Sportline

Market information
The Golf Estate competes in the lower medium estate class, a direct rival to cars such as the Ford Focus and Vauxhall Astra Estates.  The vast majority (89 per cent) of Golf Estates will be sold with a diesel engine.  The 1.9-litre TDI unit is expected to be the best-seller, accounting for 53 per cent of sales.  This will be followed by the 2.0-litre TDI with 36 per cent.  The best-selling combination is predicted to be the S 1.9-litre TDI 105 PS (34 per cent).  Volkswagen UK expects to sell around 2,800 units in a full year. 

Production
The Golf Estate is produced at Volkswagen’s Puebla plant in Mexico , alongside the New Beetle and Jetta models.  Founded in 1964, Volkswagen de Mexico employs around 15,000 people.  This plant is renowned for its high quality production standards and has a good reputation for sustainability and social responsibility.

Environment
Ecological considerations and the responsible handling of natural resources are central to the Volkswagen corporate philosophy.  Long before the European Used Car Directive and the resulting national legislation came into force, Volkswagen had set itself a number of environmental objectives, including the reduction of CO2 emissions and effective recycling methods.  As well as optimising its vehicle construction technology, Volkswagen is also leading the way in the development of new methods for the preparation and recycling of plastics, and is also developing ever-more stringent processes for the efficient handling of resources such as water, energy and materials.

DESIGN

The new Golf Estate is larger all round than its predecessor – 159 mm longer, 46 mm wider and 19 mm taller – and these greater external dimensions translate directly into improved passenger space and comfort as well as an impressive load-carrying capacity.

Comparison of Golf Estate Mk 2 and 3, Golf hatchback and Touran:

  New Golf Estate Golf Estate Mk 2 Golf hatch Mk 5 Touran
length, mm 4556 4397 4204 4407
width, w/out door mirrors, mm 1781 1735 1759 1794
height, mm 1504 1485 1479 1635
wheelbase, mm 2578 2515 2578 2675
Max luggage capacity        
w/out rear seat folded, litres 505 460 350 695
with rear seat folded, litres 1550 1470 1305 1989

Exterior
The Golf Estate was designed to be stylish and incorporates many elements of Volkswagen’s new ‘face’, similar to that on the Eos and Jetta.  However, primarily it has been designed to be practical and spacious.  The rear lights extend round the back of the car, positioned just above the rear bumper, emphasising the boot’s large loading width.  The Golf Estate also has features which are reminiscent of the Passat Estate, such as the rear window which wraps around the D-pillars and roof edge spoiler.  This not only adds to the car’s appearance but also improves aerodynamics: the Golf Estate has a drag coefficient of 0.31.

At the front, the Golf Estate has a chrome-trimmed radiator grille and sharply tapered headlamp units which house twin round lamps.  The car’s side profile exhibits four key elements: the wedge-like line rising toward the rear beneath the side windows; the visual continuity of the side window surfaces; the taillights that wrap around and extend into the rear; and a strongly angled D-pillar. 

Another key feature is the Golf Estate’s narrow panel gaps which are possible thanks to advanced contruction techniques such as laser welding.  As well as looking neat, they also enhances safety, refinement and handling.

Interior
Although the Golf Estate shares the Golf hatchback’s underpinnings and wheelbase, it is 352 mm longer and this extra length translates directly into additional luggage space.  The Golf Estate has a low loading height of 57 cm and a maximum load width of 1,292 mm.  It has a maximum load capacity (with the rear seats folded) of 1,550 litres – 80 litres larger than its predecessor.  This is not only capacious, but also easy to access.  For added ease of use, the boot can be opened or locked via a button on the remote control key fob; moulded hand holds inside the boot door make it easy to close.

When the rear seat is folded (60:40 split), the continuously flat cargo area of the Golf Estate up to the driver’s seatback measures 1.70 m.  Storage areas are also incorporated under the boot floor and in the side panels.  Even without the seats folded, a respectable 1.07 m length is still available.  One useful feature which is standard on SE and optional on S and Sportline models, is a load-through provision with rear centre armrest.  This allows long or bulky items to be transported easily and conveniently. 

To protect against cargo shifting in the passenger area and for added security when parked, all Golf Estate models have a standard luggage compartment cover which can also be removed if appropriate.  Four load lashing rings also allow luggage to be secured safely in the boot, and they fold flat when not in use.

Another practical way to secure individual objects is to use the variable boot floor.  It is set in place manually and latches securely into the notches provided.  Smaller flat objects will also fit in the recess beneath the variable boot area floor.  Also standard are special bag hooks that can be folded out from the side paneling and prevent the contents of carrier bags spilling out. 

Optional on all models for extra light and airiness in the cabin is an electric, glass panoramic sunroof.  Measuring 1.36 m in length and 87 cm wide, its transparent surface spans a large section of the interior.  The roof consists of two halves; the front section can be raised or fully opened.  To maintain full interior height, the section that opens is driven out above the closed section of the roof.  An electrically-powered sunshade offers protection from intense sunlight.

Climate control
The Golf Estate comes with standard semi-automatic (Climatic) air conditioning on all models.  The heating and ventilation system allows good airflow into the front and rear passenger compartments and also incorporates a pollen filter which operates in both fresh-air and recirculating-air modes as well as a coolable glovebox.

With the Climatic air conditioning, a temperature is selected and the system maintains the desired cabin temperature automatically whatever the temperature outside.

Alternatively, customers can upgrade to a fully automatic Climatronic air conditioning system.  This is a two-zone system, with driver and front-seat passenger able to adjust their own climates individually and independently.  Temperatures within the two zones are maintained to an accuracy of half a degree, with no readjustment necessary whatever the outside conditions.  The Climatronic’s intelligent control system even takes into account the amount of sunlight penetration into the cabin, and makes separate calculations to compensate for it on both the driver and passenger sides. 

As an example of attention to detail, the system switches automatically to recirculating-air mode when reversing and when the windscreen washer sprays are used; the fresh air supply is momentarily cut to prevent smells – of exhaust and windscreen wash – from entering.

Quality
Volkswagen enjoys a hard won reputation for quality and knows that it must make an even greater commitment in design, materials, development, quality control and many other areas if it is to retain its lead. 

By designing the Golf Estate to make use of some major and minor components including nuts, bolts, washers and fixings used in other Group products, Volkswagen is able to purchase high quality components and materials in bulk. By saving costs in these areas, Volkswagen has more resource to spend on quality items specific to the Golf Estate such as the body shell and trim components.

ENGINES

The Golf Estate is offered with a choice of one petrol and two diesel engines:
1.6-litre 102 PS; 1.9-litre 105 PS TDI; and 2.0-litre 140 PS TDI.  The two diesel units can be specified with a DPF (diesel particulate filter) to reduce particulate emissions further. 

Petrol engine

1.6-litre, 1595 cc, 8-valve 4-cyl, 102 PS
This engine has long been a popular engine in the Volkswagen range.  It is still offered today in the New Beetle model.  Maximum power of 102 PS is produced at 5,600 rpm.  Of more importance in everyday driving is maximum torque of 109 lbs/ft (148 Nm) which peaks at 3,800 rpm.  Combined economy is just over 38 mpg, with CO2 emissions of 176 g/km.  This engine is offered with a five-speed manual gearbox.

Diesel engines

When Volkswagen launched its new generation of TDI engines in 1996, it marked a significant leap forward for diesel technology.  Then at the end of 1999, Volkswagen moved the game on yet further with the launch of ‘Pumpe Düse’ or ‘PD’ technology.  Pumpe Düse translates as ‘unit injector’, a fuel injection system which can operate at pressures of up to 2,050 bars or 30,000 psi. 

It provides better atomisation of the fuel for high torque and power with low emissions and high fuel efficiency.  These Volkswagen diesels are capable of converting up to 43 per cent of the thermal energy in the fuel into mechanical energy for powering the car.

PD technology combines the injector and pump into one unit for each cylinder.  Each unit injector is operated by its own cam on the engine camshaft.  A fine adjustment of the fuel injection process coupled with much higher pressures enables Volkswagen to attain a class-leading position in low fuel consumption, high power and attainment of Euro 4 emissions.

All Volkswagen TDI models also have turbochargers with variable geometry turbine (VTG) technology.  The VTG delivers high boost pressures even at low engine speeds.  An intercooler lowers the temperature of the hot compressed air leaving the turbocharger, leading to even greater efficiency.

All Volkswagen diesel engines meet the most stringent environmental standards, with low emissions of particulate matter (PM).  However, both diesel engines in the Golf Estate range can be fitted with an optional diesel particulate filter (DPF), designed to minimise remaining traces of PM.  This DPF is self-regenerating and requires no routine maintenance.  Where a DSG automatic gearbox is specified, the DPF is fitted as standard.

1.9-litre TDI, 1896 cc, 8-valve 4-cyl, 105 PS
This adaptation of Volkswagen’s renowned and award-winning 1.9-litre TDI PD engine complies with the Euro 4 emissions legislation.

The unit develops its maximum power output of 105 PS at 4,000 rpm and maximum torque of 184 lbs ft (250 Nm) at 1,900 rpm.  Combined economy of 54.3 mpg and CO2 emissions of 137 g/km (manual) make it a frugal and popular choice. 

This engine comes with a standard five-speed manual gearbox; alternatively it can be specified with a six-speed DSG automatic ‘box. 

2.0-litre TDI, 1968 cc, 16-valve 4-cyl, 140 PS
This was the first Volkswagen turbocharged diesel to combine the innovative unit-injector fuel supply system with four valves per cylinder.

In the Golf Estate, the unit delivers 140 PS at 4,000 rpm and maximum torque of 236 lbs ft (320 Nm) from 1,750 through to 2,500 rpm.  Top speed is 127 mph and 0-62 mph acceleration takes 9.8 seconds (manual).  Despite its lively nature, the Golf Estate 2.0-litre TDI returns over 50 mpg on the combined cycle, and complies with the Euro 4 emissions standard.

Principal design features include: twin overhead camshafts, valves operated by low-friction roller cam followers with hydraulic clearance adjusters and unit injectors actuated by roller-rockers from the exhaust camshaft.  As in other TDI engines, a variable geometry turbocharger (VTG) is used, which improves response at low engine speeds.

The crossflow cylinder head incorporates two tangential inlet ports per cylinder and a ‘rotated valve star’, the term used for the special arrangement of the four valves in relation to the crankshaft, which ensures the best possible injector position and therefore optimum swirl within the cylinder.

To lower emissions of oxides of nitrogen still further to meet Euro 4 levels, exhaust gas recirculation with a two-way oxidating catalytic converter is fitted.  The quantity of recirculated exhaust gas is precisely controlled by an electric throttle valve.  In addition, a new generation of unit injector has been developed for the four-valve engine.  It is more compact than previously, with a higher part-load injection pressure and superior acoustic properties.

The 2.0 TDI’s rapid starting system allows instant starting without a pre-heating period in almost all weathers.

This engine is available with a six-speed manual or DSG gearbox.

Gearboxes

Five- and six-speed manual
The 1.6-litre petrol and 1.9-litre diesel Golf Estate models feature a standard five-speed manual gearbox.  The 2.0-litre TDI has a six-speed gearbox featuring a magnesium selector housing and cable operation with very short lever movements.  Three-cone synchromesh for the lower gears ensures a pleasant shift action.  Reduced-friction bearings further increase the efficiency of the unit and cut fuel consumption.

All gearboxes in the Golf Estate range are filled with lifetime oil and need no routine maintenance.

DSG – automatic gearbox
The DSG gearbox – available with the 1.9-litre and 2.0-litre TDI units – is a true innovation, combining the comfort of an automatic gearbox with the agility and economy of a manual unit.

The six-speed, transversely mounted DSG has two wet clutches (offering a higher thermal load tolerance than dry clutches) with hydraulic pressure regulation.  One clutch controls the ‘odd’ gears plus reverse, while the other operates the ‘even’ gears.  Essentially it is two gearboxes in one.

With this clutch management system, the breaks in power that are typical of even an automatic-shift manual gearbox no longer occur.  This is achieved by an intelligent hydraulic and electronic (mechatronic) gearbox control system, the two wet-type clutches and the two input and output shafts in each half of the gearbox.

This combination enables the next-higher gear ratio to remain engaged but on standby until it is actually selected.  In other words, if the car is being driven in third gear, fourth is selected but not yet activated.  As soon as the ideal shift point is reached, the clutch on the third-gear side opens, the other clutch closes and fourth gear engages under accurate electronic supervision.

Since the opening and closing actions of the two clutches overlap, a smooth gearshift results and the entire shift process is completed in less than four-hundredths of a second.  In addition to its fully automatic shift mode, DSG has a Tiptronic function to permit manual gear selection.

Servicing
Volkswagen offers customers a choice of servicing regime for their Golf Estate.  They can choose Time and Distance or LongLife Servicing and the appropriate selection is entirely dependent on how the car is likely to be driven and its general use. 

The Time and Distance Service is recommended for vehicles that will cover less than 10,000 (approx) miles in 12 months and if the vehicle is likely to be used in the following way:

  • Predominantly city centre driving, short journeys with frequent cold starts
  • Activities regularly producing high engine loading, for example frequent hill climbs, driving with vehicle fully loaded and towing
  • Driving with high rpm, heavy acceleration and heavy braking

In this case, the vehicle will be serviced at regular intervals, at every 10,000 miles or every 12 months. 

The LongLife Service is recommended for vehicles with a daily mileage of more than 25 miles, where the vehicle is driven regularly and on mainly longer distance journeys.  The vehicle should be mainly driven at a constant speed with minimum vehicle and engine loading, minimal towing and driven in an economical manner.  In this case, the on-board computer informs the driver via a dashboard display, when the vehicle needs a service.  A range of engine sensors electronically monitors the vehicle’s oil temperature, oil pressure, oil level and brake pad wear to establish when a service is needed.  With the LongLife system, it can be possible to drive for up to 20,000 miles or 24 months without a major service. 

Customers can choose between Time and Distance or LongLife Servicing at PDI (pre-delivery inspection) and though it is possible to change from one to another during the vehicle’s life, it can only be done when a full inspection service is due.

RUNNING GEAR

A new era for Volkswagen suspension design was ushered in with the arrival of the Touran; the Golf hatchback was the second model in the range to benefit from the development of a completely new four-link rear suspension system.

The Golf Estate uses this system, meaning ride and handling are markedly improved over the car’s predecessor, with attendant active safety benefits; the rear axle configuration also enables an impressive through-load width in the luggage compartment.

Electro-mechanical power steering is another feature designed to enhance the driving experience, while a sophisticated braking system complete with ABS and ESP (Electronic Stabilisation Programme) ensures rapid and safe deceleration.

Front axle
The Golf Estate retains the hatchback’s proven strut-type front suspension which delivers a direct steering ratio, improved axle rigidity under lateral force and reduced body roll.

Ride and handling benefit from an enhanced mounting concept for the lower wishbone, the separate mounting of springs and dampers on the suspension strut tower, a newly developed twin-sleeve damper unit and optimised spring rates.

Multi-link rear axle
The Golf Estate adopts the hatchback’s four-link rear suspension system, a major stride forwards for this market segment in terms of providing the optimum combination of handling dynamics and ride comfort.

The compact four-link layout features three lateral control arms – the spring mounting, the track rod and the upper control arm – and a trailing link at each wheel.  Suspension assemblies are attached by way of a rear-axle subframe and, as at the front, rubber-and-metal mountings that are soft in torsion but stiff radially are used to ensure that the anti-roll bar responds immediately and suppresses body roll effectively.  This combines accurate handling with good ride and low road noise levels.

The spring and damper on each side are located separately; the spring bears directly on the trailing link and the damper unit is attached to the wheel hub assembly.  The suspension geometry on the compression stroke generates a toe steering effect that maintains neutral behaviour or slight understeer in all driving and load-carrying situations.

Among the benefits of the almost neutral layout are excellent straight-running stability characteristics on highly uneven road surfaces and minimised tyre wear.

Electro-mechanical power steering
The electro-mechanical power steering system (EPS) first seen on the Touran is also employed in the Golf Estate.  Unlike previous electro-mechanical steering systems, it is able to vary the feel of the steering wheel to suit the speed and driving situation: firm and direct when driving hard, effortless at parking speeds.

Other advantages of the system include its mild self-centring action, its ability to compensate for different driving hazards, like crosswinds and steep road cambers, and a beneficial effect on fuel economy.

Braking system
The Golf Estate features a sophisticated braking system, with ABS and ESP (Electronic Stabilisation Programme) as standard across the range.

Ventilated discs measuring 280 mm are fitted at the front, while at the rear the Golf Estate has solid discs with a 260 mm diameter.  A 10” brake servo is employed.

The new-generation ESP system developed for the Golf and carried over to the Estate, has a range of features designed to have a direct and positive effect on active safety, including:

  • ABS – Anti-lock Braking System
  • AEM – Adaptive Engagement Model.  The car is continuously monitored, even when travelling in a stable manner, so that the system can take fast corrective action if instability occurs
  • ASR – traction control
  • EBD – Electronic Brakeforce Distribution
  • EDL – Electronic Differential Lock
  • ESBS – Extended Stability Brake System
  • HBA – Hydraulic Brake Assist

Electronic Stabilisation Programme – ESP
Essentially, ESP is a sophisticated system that automatically senses any tendency for the car to slide.  Should this situation occur, ESP reacts by applying the brakes to one, two, three or all four wheels and adjusts the engine’s power.  In this way, it is possible that a skid is corrected even before the driver is aware that one has started. 

This can be useful if a tendency to understeer or oversteer develops in a bend.  In such circumstances ESP can help prevent the car skidding or spinning off the road and is particularly helpful in wet or icy conditions. 

Hydraulic Brake Assist – HBA
Working in conjunction with the other elements of the braking system, HBA recognises from the speed at which the brake pedal is depressed whether it is a ‘normal’ braking situation or an emergency stop.  In the event of an emergency stop, HBA automatically increases braking pressure, activating ABS and ensuring the level of braking meets the needs of the conditions.  The application of brake assist makes it possible even for unskilled drivers to reduce braking distances by around 25 per cent.

EQUIPMENT AND TRIM

The Golf Estate is available in three trim levels: S, SE and Sportline.

S 1.6-litre 102 PS
S 1.9-litre TDI 105 PS

The above models have the following key standard features:

  • ABS anti-lock brakes with HBA (Hydraulic Brake Assist)
  • ESP (Electronic Stabilisation Programme), including EDL (Electronic Differential Lock) and ASR (traction control)
  • driver and front passenger front airbags with passenger’s airbag deactivation switch
  • curtain airbag system for front and rear passengers, including front side airbags
  • three-point seatbelts for all rear passengers
  • driver and front passenger’s whiplash optimised head restraints
  • Isofix child seat preparation for two outer rear seats
  • transponder-based electronic engine immobiliser
  • remote control central locking
  • ‘Climatic’ semi-automatic air conditioning
  • front and rear electric windows; electrically adjustable and heated door mirrors
  • factory-fit stereo with CD player and four speakers
  • bag hooks in luggage compartment
  • height and reach adjustable steering column; driver’s seat height adjustment
  • full size spare wheel
  • black roof rails
  • body-coloured bumper strips with chrome inserts
  • body-coloured door mirrors with integrated indicators
  • 6½J x 16 steel wheels with 205/55 R16 tyres

SE 1.6-litre 102 PS
SE 1.9-litre TDI 105 PS
SE 2.0-litre TDI 140 PS

Among a number of features, the SE adds the following equipment over S:

  • alarm with interior protection
  • cruise control
  • automatic coming/leaving home lighting function
  • dusk sensor, automatic driving lights
  • rain sensor and automatic dimming rear view mirror
  • driver and front passenger under seat drawer
  • front centre armrest with storage compartment
  • load-through provision
  • front comfort seats with height and lumbar adjustment
  • radio/CD player with eight speakers
  • multifunction computer
  • 12V socket in luggage compartment
  • 6½J x 16 ‘Toronto’ alloy wheels with 205/55 R16 tyres and anti-theft bolts

Sportline 1.6-litre 102 PS
Sportline 2.0-litre 140 PS

Over the S model, Sport adds the following:

  • front fog lights
  • rear tinted windows from B-pillar back
  • alarm with interior protection
  • automatic coming/leaving home lighting function
  • dusk sensor, automatic driving lights
  • rain sensor and automatic dimming rear view mirror
  • driver and front passenger under seat drawer
  • front centre armrest with storage compartment
  • front sports seats with height and lumbar adjustment
  • leather-trimmed steering wheel, gear knob and handbrake grip
  • multifunction computer
  • multifunction steering wheel (with paddle shift where DSG is specified)
  • radio/CD player with eight speakers
  • sports suspension (lowered by approx 15 mm)
  • 12V socket in luggage compartment
  • 7J x 17 ‘ClassiXs’ alloy wheels with 225/45 R17 tyres and anti-theft bolts

FACTORY FIT OPTIONS

A number of factory- and retailer-fit options are available on the Golf Estate, allowing buyers further to customise their vehicles.  These include a panoramic sunroof, air conditioning upgrade, alternative alloy wheels, DVD navigation/radio system, bi-Xenon headlights, leather upholstery and parking sensors among a host of other items.

Self-dimming rear view mirror and rain sensor
Standard on SE and above is a ‘thinking’ rear-view mirror.  It uses LCD technology to sense when the lights of a vehicle behind are likely to distract the driver.  The mirror reacts by dimming automatically, in a similar way to light-sensitive sunglasses.  Sensors in the front and rear of the mirror monitor changes and readjust when appropriate. 

In conjunction with this are automatic windscreen wipers.  A rain sensor positioned behind the interior rear-view mirror on the windscreen activates the wiper system as required.  An infrared beam is reflected in different ways according to the pattern of moisture landing on a windscreen sensor.  Signals from the sensor are used to control the wipers.  When the wiper control is set to the normal ‘Intermittent’ position the wipers are automatically controlled from ‘off’ when the screen is dry through different delay intervals of intermittent wipe and on to two speeds of continuous operation.

Gas-discharge headlights
Ultra-efficient gas discharge (bi-Xenon) headlights are offered as an option on SE and Sportline.  These provide a well focused, blue-white light approximately two and a half times more powerful than standard lights.  This option includes a self-levelling mechanism and high pressure headlight wash. 

Parking sensors
Also available across the range is a rear parking distance control system which simplifies tight parking manoeuvres.  The system uses four ultrasonic sensors, integrated in the rear bumper, to pinpoint parked vehicles or other objects behind the car.  Automatically activated when reverse gear is selected, the system produces an audible warning signal to guide the driver up to a safe distance to any objects behind.  Not only does this help to avoid car park knocks, it could also prevent accidents, for example, if a child runs out who may not have been seen.

The parking sensor ‘pack’ also incorporates cruise control (standard on SE) and an electronic tyre pressure monitoring system.

DVD navigation / radio system
SE and Sportline Golf Estate models are offered with the option of a factory-fit DVD satellite navigation system.  The 6½” colour LCD screen, which is mounted in the centre console, is teamed with a simplified display in the instrument panel and verbal instructions.  An armrest-mounted six-disc CD autochanger is also standard with this option.

The driver or passenger can use the screen to pinpoint where the car is on a moving map display.  The LCD display also provides information for the in-car music system and incorporates an RGB video input to play video material from another source (i.e. camera or video tape player).

Rear ABS wheel sensors are used to determine the distance the car has covered and to provide information when the car is turning.  Further system components include a solid state magnetic compass concealed under the roof and a three-way roof aerial for radio and GPS (Global Positioning System).  The aerial receives signals from the satellites in orbit around the earth from which the system is able to calculate the position of the car on the surface of the earth.

A digitised road map, stored on DVD in the car, is accessed.  This contains road details and other information such as the locations of airports and stations.  It is effectively a digital street plan.  The desired destination is selected using the buttons on the centre console.  The system evaluates satellite signals and those from the wheel sensors and compares these data with the digitised DVD road map.  Quite quickly, by comparing the movement of the car with the map and its approximate position from the satellites, the system can calculate the position of the car.  The road, street or motorway the car is on is then displayed and the route to the chosen destination calculated. 

The system employed in the Golf Estate also allows for a choice of different types of route – for example, avoiding motorways or with a cross-country drive.

Should the driver deviate from an indicated route, the voice will politely request that he or she makes a safe U-turn.  If the driver does not oblige, the system will automatically calculate a new route and continue to issue instructions to reach the destination.  The system will even guide the driver to a destination in Europe - when the UK map runs out, it will ask for the appropriate European map disc to be inserted.

SAFETY

The new Golf Estate is the epitome of the classic family and business car.  Besides offering a high level of practicality, quality and value for money, its buyers also expect the strictest, most comprehensive safety requirements to be satisfied.  The new Estate would not be a Volkswagen if it did not set standards in this area too.  All models have six airbags and optional rear side airbags.  In addition, the high levels of body rigidity brought about by the advanced construction techniques employed in the Golf Estate make it safe.  Key to this is the use of laser welding.

Passive safety
The new Golf Estate features as standard a total of six airbags: front airbags, side airbags and curtain airbags which extend along both sides of the vehicle.  Two additional side airbags are offered in the rear as an option. 

The front seats have whiplash-optimised head restraints and pyrotechnic belt tensioners with integrated seatbelt force limiters (the latter is also employed in the rear), while all models have five three-point seatbelts and five head restraints.  Also standard are Isofix child seat anchorage points at the two outer seating positions in the rear; and so that a rear-facing child seat can be safely carried in the front seat, the front passenger airbag can be easily deactivated by using the ignition key to operate a switch in the glovebox.

Front airbags
The front airbag system of the Golf Estate consists of a driver airbag with a volume of 60 litres and a front passenger airbag with a volume of 120 litres.  The steering column also contributes to passive safety.  It has a special clamping device for the length and height adjustment mechanism.  Together with the steering rod, this clamping device prevents the steering wheel from lifting in a crash.

Side airbags
The side airbags of the Golf Estate are located in the seatbacks of the front seats.  They protect the chest, abdomen and pelvis and are optimally tuned to the rigid side structure of the car.  An innovative sensor concept ensures very short triggering times.  Integrating the side airbags in the seatbacks guarantees optimal positioning of the driver and front passenger relative to the airbag.

Curtain airbags
A curtain airbag system for front and rear passengers is also standard.  These airbags cover the window area from the A- to the C-pillar and from the headliner to over the door shoulder to give maximum protection at all outer seating positions, regardless of body height.

Rear side airbag system
This is offered as an option on all Golf Estate models and is designed to give further protection to the bodies of the rear passengers in the event of a crash. For active safety measures, please see Braking section.

Child seat

An Isofix child seat has been developed for very small passengers in the Golf Estate, with a target age group between eight months and four years (or 9 to 18 kgs).  It fits into the Isofix fixtures which are standard in the two outer rear seats.  This type of fixture ensures that the seat is secured in place to optimum effect. 

SECURITY

The security systems on the Golf Estate were developed to be class-leading.  Highlights include:

  • an in-cut key which is more difficult to copy
  • free-wheeling mechanism for the door-locks which means if an attempt is made to turn the lock cylinder with a screwdriver, for example, the connection is broken to the door opening mechanism
  • enhanced steering lock clutch to resist forcing
  • protection boxes surrounding door lock mechanisms
  • alternating code, transponder-based engine immobiliser
  • alternating code for remote control central locking
  • an advanced alarm which includes interior protection (standard on Match and above).  The system is easily armed via the remote control key and causes an LED light mounted next to the driver’s door lock to flash
  • factory-fitted stereo with CD player which is Volkswagen-branded and security coded.  When the car is left switched off, it also has a flashing LED light which acts as a visual deterrent
  • electronic ‘CAN-bus’ system linking central locking, theft protection system, electric windows and mirrors, and internal lighting     

Line-up with insurance groups
Thanks to its impressive security and safety features, the Golf Estate has secured the following insurance group ratings from the ABI (Association of British Insurers):

S  
1.6-litre 102 PS   6
1.9-litre TDI 105 PS 6
SE  
1.6-litre 102 PS 6
1.9-litre TDI 105 PS    6
2.0-litre TDI 140 PS  12
Sportline  
1.6-litre 102 PS 6
2.0-litre 140 PS  12

WARRANTIES

The Golf Estate has a three year (first and second year manufacturer operated, third year retailer operated) mechanical warranty.  In addition, it comes with a class-leading 12 year anti-perforation guarantee, three year paint warranty and a year’s membership of Volkswagen Assistance which includes pan- European breakdown cover.  The assistance package can be extended after a year at minimal cost to the customer.

The new Golf Estate – which launches in the UK on 10 August 2007 – is the third incarnation of Volkswagen’s popular load-carrier.  The previous model ceased production in January 2006, after going on sale in August 1998. 

This latest generation of Golf Estate brings additional versatility and load-carrying ability to the Golf range.  Loadspace is 505 litres with the seats in place, rising to a maximum of 1,550 litres when the rear seats are folded flat into the boot floor.  A wide tailgate and low loading lip boost practicality while a chrome grille section – similar to the ‘face’ on the Eos – gives the new car an imposing and stylish appearance.

Three trim levels are available – S, SE and Sportline – along with three engines, a 1.6-litre 102 PS petrol and 1.9-litre 105 PS and 2.0-litre 140 PS TDI units.  A DSG automatic gearbox is available with the two diesel powerplants.

All models are generously equipped with Climatic air conditioning, electric windows and door mirrors, a radio/CD player and remote central locking featuring as standard.  Safety is also key: all models benefit from ABS with HBA (Hydraulic Brake Assist) and ESP (Electronic Stabilisation Programme) as well as front, side and curtain airbag systems and whiplash-optimised head restraints for front passengers.

The first Golf Estate went on sale in 1993; since then, more than 1.2 million units have been sold worldwide.  From the start of right hand drive sales in 1994, 33,577 Golf Estates have found homes with UK buyers.

SUMMARY

  • International debut at Geneva Motor Show 6 March 2007; launched in Germany in April and in the UK in August 2007
  • Third generation of Golf Estate – 1.2 million units of previous models sold
  • Key dimensions are 4,556 mm length; 1,781 mm width; 1,504 mm height; and wheelbase of 2,578 mm
  • Load capacity is a capacious 505 litre with seats in place, rising to a maximum of 1,550 litres with the rear seats folded. The Golf Estate can accommodate loads of up to 1.74 m in length and weighing up to 629 kg
  • Retains the Golf’s acclaimed ride and handling characteristics, with four-link independent rear suspension
  • Electro-mechanical power steering with speed-dependent assistance is standard on all models
  • Class-leading body rigidity for improved safety, dynamics and refinement
  • Engine line-up includes one petrol and two diesel units: 1.6-litre 102 PS; 1.9-litre 105 PS TDI; and 2.0-litre TDI 140 PS. Both diesel engines can be specified with or without Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) and with the option of Volkswagen’s advanced six-speed DSG automatic gearbox (with DPF only)
  • Comprehensive standard safety features include latest generation ESP (Electronic Stabilisation Programme) with EDL (Electronic Differential Lock) and ASR (Traction Control); plus ABS with HBA (Hydraulic Brake Assist); automatic hazard light illumination under heavy braking; three-point safety belts for all occupants; whiplash optimised front head restraints; twin front and side airbags plus curtain airbag system for front and rear passengers
  • Offered in three trim levels: S, SE and Sportline

Market information
The Golf Estate competes in the lower medium estate class, a direct rival to cars such as the Ford Focus and Vauxhall Astra Estates.  The vast majority (89 per cent) of Golf Estates will be sold with a diesel engine.  The 1.9-litre TDI unit is expected to be the best-seller, accounting for 53 per cent of sales.  This will be followed by the 2.0-litre TDI with 36 per cent.  The best-selling combination is predicted to be the S 1.9-litre TDI 105 PS (34 per cent).  Volkswagen UK expects to sell around 2,800 units in a full year. 

Production
The Golf Estate is produced at Volkswagen’s Puebla plant in Mexico , alongside the New Beetle and Jetta models.  Founded in 1964, Volkswagen de Mexico employs around 15,000 people.  This plant is renowned for its high quality production standards and has a good reputation for sustainability and social responsibility.

Environment
Ecological considerations and the responsible handling of natural resources are central to the Volkswagen corporate philosophy.  Long before the European Used Car Directive and the resulting national legislation came into force, Volkswagen had set itself a number of environmental objectives, including the reduction of CO2 emissions and effective recycling methods.  As well as optimising its vehicle construction technology, Volkswagen is also leading the way in the development of new methods for the preparation and recycling of plastics, and is also developing ever-more stringent processes for the efficient handling of resources such as water, energy and materials.

DESIGN

The new Golf Estate is larger all round than its predecessor – 159 mm longer, 46 mm wider and 19 mm taller – and these greater external dimensions translate directly into improved passenger space and comfort as well as an impressive load-carrying capacity.

Comparison of Golf Estate Mk 2 and 3, Golf hatchback and Touran:

  New Golf Estate Golf Estate Mk 2 Golf hatch Mk 5 Touran
length, mm 4556 4397 4204 4407
width, w/out door mirrors, mm 1781 1735 1759 1794
height, mm 1504 1485 1479 1635
wheelbase, mm 2578 2515 2578 2675
Max luggage capacity        
w/out rear seat folded, litres 505 460 350 695
with rear seat folded, litres 1550 1470 1305 1989

Exterior
The Golf Estate was designed to be stylish and incorporates many elements of Volkswagen’s new ‘face’, similar to that on the Eos and Jetta.  However, primarily it has been designed to be practical and spacious.  The rear lights extend round the back of the car, positioned just above the rear bumper, emphasising the boot’s large loading width.  The Golf Estate also has features which are reminiscent of the Passat Estate, such as the rear window which wraps around the D-pillars and roof edge spoiler.  This not only adds to the car’s appearance but also improves aerodynamics: the Golf Estate has a drag coefficient of 0.31.

At the front, the Golf Estate has a chrome-trimmed radiator grille and sharply tapered headlamp units which house twin round lamps.  The car’s side profile exhibits four key elements: the wedge-like line rising toward the rear beneath the side windows; the visual continuity of the side window surfaces; the taillights that wrap around and extend into the rear; and a strongly angled D-pillar. 

Another key feature is the Golf Estate’s narrow panel gaps which are possible thanks to advanced contruction techniques such as laser welding.  As well as looking neat, they also enhances safety, refinement and handling.

Interior
Although the Golf Estate shares the Golf hatchback’s underpinnings and wheelbase, it is 352 mm longer and this extra length translates directly into additional luggage space.  The Golf Estate has a low loading height of 57 cm and a maximum load width of 1,292 mm.  It has a maximum load capacity (with the rear seats folded) of 1,550 litres – 80 litres larger than its predecessor.  This is not only capacious, but also easy to access.  For added ease of use, the boot can be opened or locked via a button on the remote control key fob; moulded hand holds inside the boot door make it easy to close.

When the rear seat is folded (60:40 split), the continuously flat cargo area of the Golf Estate up to the driver’s seatback measures 1.70 m.  Storage areas are also incorporated under the boot floor and in the side panels.  Even without the seats folded, a respectable 1.07 m length is still available.  One useful feature which is standard on SE and optional on S and Sportline models, is a load-through provision with rear centre armrest.  This allows long or bulky items to be transported easily and conveniently. 

To protect against cargo shifting in the passenger area and for added security when parked, all Golf Estate models have a standard luggage compartment cover which can also be removed if appropriate.  Four load lashing rings also allow luggage to be secured safely in the boot, and they fold flat when not in use.

Another practical way to secure individual objects is to use the variable boot floor.  It is set in place manually and latches securely into the notches provided.  Smaller flat objects will also fit in the recess beneath the variable boot area floor.  Also standard are special bag hooks that can be folded out from the side paneling and prevent the contents of carrier bags spilling out. 

Optional on all models for extra light and airiness in the cabin is an electric, glass panoramic sunroof.  Measuring 1.36 m in length and 87 cm wide, its transparent surface spans a large section of the interior.  The roof consists of two halves; the front section can be raised or fully opened.  To maintain full interior height, the section that opens is driven out above the closed section of the roof.  An electrically-powered sunshade offers protection from intense sunlight.

Climate control
The Golf Estate comes with standard semi-automatic (Climatic) air conditioning on all models.  The heating and ventilation system allows good airflow into the front and rear passenger compartments and also incorporates a pollen filter which operates in both fresh-air and recirculating-air modes as well as a coolable glovebox.

With the Climatic air conditioning, a temperature is selected and the system maintains the desired cabin temperature automatically whatever the temperature outside.

Alternatively, customers can upgrade to a fully automatic Climatronic air conditioning system.  This is a two-zone system, with driver and front-seat passenger able to adjust their own climates individually and independently.  Temperatures within the two zones are maintained to an accuracy of half a degree, with no readjustment necessary whatever the outside conditions.  The Climatronic’s intelligent control system even takes into account the amount of sunlight penetration into the cabin, and makes separate calculations to compensate for it on both the driver and passenger sides. 

As an example of attention to detail, the system switches automatically to recirculating-air mode when reversing and when the windscreen washer sprays are used; the fresh air supply is momentarily cut to prevent smells – of exhaust and windscreen wash – from entering.

Quality
Volkswagen enjoys a hard won reputation for quality and knows that it must make an even greater commitment in design, materials, development, quality control and many other areas if it is to retain its lead. 

By designing the Golf Estate to make use of some major and minor components including nuts, bolts, washers and fixings used in other Group products, Volkswagen is able to purchase high quality components and materials in bulk. By saving costs in these areas, Volkswagen has more resource to spend on quality items specific to the Golf Estate such as the body shell and trim components.

ENGINES

The Golf Estate is offered with a choice of one petrol and two diesel engines:
1.6-litre 102 PS; 1.9-litre 105 PS TDI; and 2.0-litre 140 PS TDI.  The two diesel units can be specified with a DPF (diesel particulate filter) to reduce particulate emissions further. 

Petrol engine

1.6-litre, 1595 cc, 8-valve 4-cyl, 102 PS
This engine has long been a popular engine in the Volkswagen range.  It is still offered today in the New Beetle model.  Maximum power of 102 PS is produced at 5,600 rpm.  Of more importance in everyday driving is maximum torque of 109 lbs/ft (148 Nm) which peaks at 3,800 rpm.  Combined economy is just over 38 mpg, with CO2 emissions of 176 g/km.  This engine is offered with a five-speed manual gearbox.

Diesel engines

When Volkswagen launched its new generation of TDI engines in 1996, it marked a significant leap forward for diesel technology.  Then at the end of 1999, Volkswagen moved the game on yet further with the launch of ‘Pumpe Düse’ or ‘PD’ technology.  Pumpe Düse translates as ‘unit injector’, a fuel injection system which can operate at pressures of up to 2,050 bars or 30,000 psi. 

It provides better atomisation of the fuel for high torque and power with low emissions and high fuel efficiency.  These Volkswagen diesels are capable of converting up to 43 per cent of the thermal energy in the fuel into mechanical energy for powering the car.

PD technology combines the injector and pump into one unit for each cylinder.  Each unit injector is operated by its own cam on the engine camshaft.  A fine adjustment of the fuel injection process coupled with much higher pressures enables Volkswagen to attain a class-leading position in low fuel consumption, high power and attainment of Euro 4 emissions.

All Volkswagen TDI models also have turbochargers with variable geometry turbine (VTG) technology.  The VTG delivers high boost pressures even at low engine speeds.  An intercooler lowers the temperature of the hot compressed air leaving the turbocharger, leading to even greater efficiency.

All Volkswagen diesel engines meet the most stringent environmental standards, with low emissions of particulate matter (PM).  However, both diesel engines in the Golf Estate range can be fitted with an optional diesel particulate filter (DPF), designed to minimise remaining traces of PM.  This DPF is self-regenerating and requires no routine maintenance.  Where a DSG automatic gearbox is specified, the DPF is fitted as standard.

1.9-litre TDI, 1896 cc, 8-valve 4-cyl, 105 PS
This adaptation of Volkswagen’s renowned and award-winning 1.9-litre TDI PD engine complies with the Euro 4 emissions legislation.

The unit develops its maximum power output of 105 PS at 4,000 rpm and maximum torque of 184 lbs ft (250 Nm) at 1,900 rpm.  Combined economy of 54.3 mpg and CO2 emissions of 137 g/km (manual) make it a frugal and popular choice. 

This engine comes with a standard five-speed manual gearbox; alternatively it can be specified with a six-speed DSG automatic ‘box. 

2.0-litre TDI, 1968 cc, 16-valve 4-cyl, 140 PS
This was the first Volkswagen turbocharged diesel to combine the innovative unit-injector fuel supply system with four valves per cylinder.

In the Golf Estate, the unit delivers 140 PS at 4,000 rpm and maximum torque of 236 lbs ft (320 Nm) from 1,750 through to 2,500 rpm.  Top speed is 127 mph and 0-62 mph acceleration takes 9.8 seconds (manual).  Despite its lively nature, the Golf Estate 2.0-litre TDI returns over 50 mpg on the combined cycle, and complies with the Euro 4 emissions standard.

Principal design features include: twin overhead camshafts, valves operated by low-friction roller cam followers with hydraulic clearance adjusters and unit injectors actuated by roller-rockers from the exhaust camshaft.  As in other TDI engines, a variable geometry turbocharger (VTG) is used, which improves response at low engine speeds.

The crossflow cylinder head incorporates two tangential inlet ports per cylinder and a ‘rotated valve star’, the term used for the special arrangement of the four valves in relation to the crankshaft, which ensures the best possible injector position and therefore optimum swirl within the cylinder.

To lower emissions of oxides of nitrogen still further to meet Euro 4 levels, exhaust gas recirculation with a two-way oxidating catalytic converter is fitted.  The quantity of recirculated exhaust gas is precisely controlled by an electric throttle valve.  In addition, a new generation of unit injector has been developed for the four-valve engine.  It is more compact than previously, with a higher part-load injection pressure and superior acoustic properties.

The 2.0 TDI’s rapid starting system allows instant starting without a pre-heating period in almost all weathers.

This engine is available with a six-speed manual or DSG gearbox.

Gearboxes

Five- and six-speed manual
The 1.6-litre petrol and 1.9-litre diesel Golf Estate models feature a standard five-speed manual gearbox.  The 2.0-litre TDI has a six-speed gearbox featuring a magnesium selector housing and cable operation with very short lever movements.  Three-cone synchromesh for the lower gears ensures a pleasant shift action.  Reduced-friction bearings further increase the efficiency of the unit and cut fuel consumption.

All gearboxes in the Golf Estate range are filled with lifetime oil and need no routine maintenance.

DSG – automatic gearbox
The DSG gearbox – available with the 1.9-litre and 2.0-litre TDI units – is a true innovation, combining the comfort of an automatic gearbox with the agility and economy of a manual unit.

The six-speed, transversely mounted DSG has two wet clutches (offering a higher thermal load tolerance than dry clutches) with hydraulic pressure regulation.  One clutch controls the ‘odd’ gears plus reverse, while the other operates the ‘even’ gears.  Essentially it is two gearboxes in one.

With this clutch management system, the breaks in power that are typical of even an automatic-shift manual gearbox no longer occur.  This is achieved by an intelligent hydraulic and electronic (mechatronic) gearbox control system, the two wet-type clutches and the two input and output shafts in each half of the gearbox.

This combination enables the next-higher gear ratio to remain engaged but on standby until it is actually selected.  In other words, if the car is being driven in third gear, fourth is selected but not yet activated.  As soon as the ideal shift point is reached, the clutch on the third-gear side opens, the other clutch closes and fourth gear engages under accurate electronic supervision.

Since the opening and closing actions of the two clutches overlap, a smooth gearshift results and the entire shift process is completed in less than four-hundredths of a second.  In addition to its fully automatic shift mode, DSG has a Tiptronic function to permit manual gear selection.

Servicing
Volkswagen offers customers a choice of servicing regime for their Golf Estate.  They can choose Time and Distance or LongLife Servicing and the appropriate selection is entirely dependent on how the car is likely to be driven and its general use. 

The Time and Distance Service is recommended for vehicles that will cover less than 10,000 (approx) miles in 12 months and if the vehicle is likely to be used in the following way:

  • Predominantly city centre driving, short journeys with frequent cold starts
  • Activities regularly producing high engine loading, for example frequent hill climbs, driving with vehicle fully loaded and towing
  • Driving with high rpm, heavy acceleration and heavy braking

In this case, the vehicle will be serviced at regular intervals, at every 10,000 miles or every 12 months. 

The LongLife Service is recommended for vehicles with a daily mileage of more than 25 miles, where the vehicle is driven regularly and on mainly longer distance journeys.  The vehicle should be mainly driven at a constant speed with minimum vehicle and engine loading, minimal towing and driven in an economical manner.  In this case, the on-board computer informs the driver via a dashboard display, when the vehicle needs a service.  A range of engine sensors electronically monitors the vehicle’s oil temperature, oil pressure, oil level and brake pad wear to establish when a service is needed.  With the LongLife system, it can be possible to drive for up to 20,000 miles or 24 months without a major service. 

Customers can choose between Time and Distance or LongLife Servicing at PDI (pre-delivery inspection) and though it is possible to change from one to another during the vehicle’s life, it can only be done when a full inspection service is due.

RUNNING GEAR

A new era for Volkswagen suspension design was ushered in with the arrival of the Touran; the Golf hatchback was the second model in the range to benefit from the development of a completely new four-link rear suspension system.

The Golf Estate uses this system, meaning ride and handling are markedly improved over the car’s predecessor, with attendant active safety benefits; the rear axle configuration also enables an impressive through-load width in the luggage compartment.

Electro-mechanical power steering is another feature designed to enhance the driving experience, while a sophisticated braking system complete with ABS and ESP (Electronic Stabilisation Programme) ensures rapid and safe deceleration.

Front axle
The Golf Estate retains the hatchback’s proven strut-type front suspension which delivers a direct steering ratio, improved axle rigidity under lateral force and reduced body roll.

Ride and handling benefit from an enhanced mounting concept for the lower wishbone, the separate mounting of springs and dampers on the suspension strut tower, a newly developed twin-sleeve damper unit and optimised spring rates.

Multi-link rear axle
The Golf Estate adopts the hatchback’s four-link rear suspension system, a major stride forwards for this market segment in terms of providing the optimum combination of handling dynamics and ride comfort.

The compact four-link layout features three lateral control arms – the spring mounting, the track rod and the upper control arm – and a trailing link at each wheel.  Suspension assemblies are attached by way of a rear-axle subframe and, as at the front, rubber-and-metal mountings that are soft in torsion but stiff radially are used to ensure that the anti-roll bar responds immediately and suppresses body roll effectively.  This combines accurate handling with good ride and low road noise levels.

The spring and damper on each side are located separately; the spring bears directly on the trailing link and the damper unit is attached to the wheel hub assembly.  The suspension geometry on the compression stroke generates a toe steering effect that maintains neutral behaviour or slight understeer in all driving and load-carrying situations.

Among the benefits of the almost neutral layout are excellent straight-running stability characteristics on highly uneven road surfaces and minimised tyre wear.

Electro-mechanical power steering
The electro-mechanical power steering system (EPS) first seen on the Touran is also employed in the Golf Estate.  Unlike previous electro-mechanical steering systems, it is able to vary the feel of the steering wheel to suit the speed and driving situation: firm and direct when driving hard, effortless at parking speeds.

Other advantages of the system include its mild self-centring action, its ability to compensate for different driving hazards, like crosswinds and steep road cambers, and a beneficial effect on fuel economy.

Braking system
The Golf Estate features a sophisticated braking system, with ABS and ESP (Electronic Stabilisation Programme) as standard across the range.

Ventilated discs measuring 280 mm are fitted at the front, while at the rear the Golf Estate has solid discs with a 260 mm diameter.  A 10” brake servo is employed.

The new-generation ESP system developed for the Golf and carried over to the Estate, has a range of features designed to have a direct and positive effect on active safety, including:

  • ABS – Anti-lock Braking System
  • AEM – Adaptive Engagement Model.  The car is continuously monitored, even when travelling in a stable manner, so that the system can take fast corrective action if instability occurs
  • ASR – traction control
  • EBD – Electronic Brakeforce Distribution
  • EDL – Electronic Differential Lock
  • ESBS – Extended Stability Brake System
  • HBA – Hydraulic Brake Assist

Electronic Stabilisation Programme – ESP
Essentially, ESP is a sophisticated system that automatically senses any tendency for the car to slide.  Should this situation occur, ESP reacts by applying the brakes to one, two, three or all four wheels and adjusts the engine’s power.  In this way, it is possible that a skid is corrected even before the driver is aware that one has started. 

This can be useful if a tendency to understeer or oversteer develops in a bend.  In such circumstances ESP can help prevent the car skidding or spinning off the road and is particularly helpful in wet or icy conditions. 

Hydraulic Brake Assist – HBA
Working in conjunction with the other elements of the braking system, HBA recognises from the speed at which the brake pedal is depressed whether it is a ‘normal’ braking situation or an emergency stop.  In the event of an emergency stop, HBA automatically increases braking pressure, activating ABS and ensuring the level of braking meets the needs of the conditions.  The application of brake assist makes it possible even for unskilled drivers to reduce braking distances by around 25 per cent.

EQUIPMENT AND TRIM

The Golf Estate is available in three trim levels: S, SE and Sportline.

S 1.6-litre 102 PS
S 1.9-litre TDI 105 PS

The above models have the following key standard features:

  • ABS anti-lock brakes with HBA (Hydraulic Brake Assist)
  • ESP (Electronic Stabilisation Programme), including EDL (Electronic Differential Lock) and ASR (traction control)
  • driver and front passenger front airbags with passenger’s airbag deactivation switch
  • curtain airbag system for front and rear passengers, including front side airbags
  • three-point seatbelts for all rear passengers
  • driver and front passenger’s whiplash optimised head restraints
  • Isofix child seat preparation for two outer rear seats
  • transponder-based electronic engine immobiliser
  • remote control central locking
  • ‘Climatic’ semi-automatic air conditioning
  • front and rear electric windows; electrically adjustable and heated door mirrors
  • factory-fit stereo with CD player and four speakers
  • bag hooks in luggage compartment
  • height and reach adjustable steering column; driver’s seat height adjustment
  • full size spare wheel
  • black roof rails
  • body-coloured bumper strips with chrome inserts
  • body-coloured door mirrors with integrated indicators
  • 6½J x 16 steel wheels with 205/55 R16 tyres

SE 1.6-litre 102 PS
SE 1.9-litre TDI 105 PS
SE 2.0-litre TDI 140 PS

Among a number of features, the SE adds the following equipment over S:

  • alarm with interior protection
  • cruise control
  • automatic coming/leaving home lighting function
  • dusk sensor, automatic driving lights
  • rain sensor and automatic dimming rear view mirror
  • driver and front passenger under seat drawer
  • front centre armrest with storage compartment
  • load-through provision
  • front comfort seats with height and lumbar adjustment
  • radio/CD player with eight speakers
  • multifunction computer
  • 12V socket in luggage compartment
  • 6½J x 16 ‘Toronto’ alloy wheels with 205/55 R16 tyres and anti-theft bolts

Sportline 1.6-litre 102 PS
Sportline 2.0-litre 140 PS

Over the S model, Sport adds the following:

  • front fog lights
  • rear tinted windows from B-pillar back
  • alarm with interior protection
  • automatic coming/leaving home lighting function
  • dusk sensor, automatic driving lights
  • rain sensor and automatic dimming rear view mirror
  • driver and front passenger under seat drawer
  • front centre armrest with storage compartment
  • front sports seats with height and lumbar adjustment
  • leather-trimmed steering wheel, gear knob and handbrake grip
  • multifunction computer
  • multifunction steering wheel (with paddle shift where DSG is specified)
  • radio/CD player with eight speakers
  • sports suspension (lowered by approx 15 mm)
  • 12V socket in luggage compartment
  • 7J x 17 ‘ClassiXs’ alloy wheels with 225/45 R17 tyres and anti-theft bolts

FACTORY FIT OPTIONS

A number of factory- and retailer-fit options are available on the Golf Estate, allowing buyers further to customise their vehicles.  These include a panoramic sunroof, air conditioning upgrade, alternative alloy wheels, DVD navigation/radio system, bi-Xenon headlights, leather upholstery and parking sensors among a host of other items.

Self-dimming rear view mirror and rain sensor
Standard on SE and above is a ‘thinking’ rear-view mirror.  It uses LCD technology to sense when the lights of a vehicle behind are likely to distract the driver.  The mirror reacts by dimming automatically, in a similar way to light-sensitive sunglasses.  Sensors in the front and rear of the mirror monitor changes and readjust when appropriate. 

In conjunction with this are automatic windscreen wipers.  A rain sensor positioned behind the interior rear-view mirror on the windscreen activates the wiper system as required.  An infrared beam is reflected in different ways according to the pattern of moisture landing on a windscreen sensor.  Signals from the sensor are used to control the wipers.  When the wiper control is set to the normal ‘Intermittent’ position the wipers are automatically controlled from ‘off’ when the screen is dry through different delay intervals of intermittent wipe and on to two speeds of continuous operation.

Gas-discharge headlights
Ultra-efficient gas discharge (bi-Xenon) headlights are offered as an option on SE and Sportline.  These provide a well focused, blue-white light approximately two and a half times more powerful than standard lights.  This option includes a self-levelling mechanism and high pressure headlight wash. 

Parking sensors
Also available across the range is a rear parking distance control system which simplifies tight parking manoeuvres.  The system uses four ultrasonic sensors, integrated in the rear bumper, to pinpoint parked vehicles or other objects behind the car.  Automatically activated when reverse gear is selected, the system produces an audible warning signal to guide the driver up to a safe distance to any objects behind.  Not only does this help to avoid car park knocks, it could also prevent accidents, for example, if a child runs out who may not have been seen.

The parking sensor ‘pack’ also incorporates cruise control (standard on SE) and an electronic tyre pressure monitoring system.

DVD navigation / radio system
SE and Sportline Golf Estate models are offered with the option of a factory-fit DVD satellite navigation system.  The 6½” colour LCD screen, which is mounted in the centre console, is teamed with a simplified display in the instrument panel and verbal instructions.  An armrest-mounted six-disc CD autochanger is also standard with this option.

The driver or passenger can use the screen to pinpoint where the car is on a moving map display.  The LCD display also provides information for the in-car music system and incorporates an RGB video input to play video material from another source (i.e. camera or video tape player).

Rear ABS wheel sensors are used to determine the distance the car has covered and to provide information when the car is turning.  Further system components include a solid state magnetic compass concealed under the roof and a three-way roof aerial for radio and GPS (Global Positioning System).  The aerial receives signals from the satellites in orbit around the earth from which the system is able to calculate the position of the car on the surface of the earth.

A digitised road map, stored on DVD in the car, is accessed.  This contains road details and other information such as the locations of airports and stations.  It is effectively a digital street plan.  The desired destination is selected using the buttons on the centre console.  The system evaluates satellite signals and those from the wheel sensors and compares these data with the digitised DVD road map.  Quite quickly, by comparing the movement of the car with the map and its approximate position from the satellites, the system can calculate the position of the car.  The road, street or motorway the car is on is then displayed and the route to the chosen destination calculated. 

The system employed in the Golf Estate also allows for a choice of different types of route – for example, avoiding motorways or with a cross-country drive.

Should the driver deviate from an indicated route, the voice will politely request that he or she makes a safe U-turn.  If the driver does not oblige, the system will automatically calculate a new route and continue to issue instructions to reach the destination.  The system will even guide the driver to a destination in Europe - when the UK map runs out, it will ask for the appropriate European map disc to be inserted.

SAFETY

The new Golf Estate is the epitome of the classic family and business car.  Besides offering a high level of practicality, quality and value for money, its buyers also expect the strictest, most comprehensive safety requirements to be satisfied.  The new Estate would not be a Volkswagen if it did not set standards in this area too.  All models have six airbags and optional rear side airbags.  In addition, the high levels of body rigidity brought about by the advanced construction techniques employed in the Golf Estate make it safe.  Key to this is the use of laser welding.

Passive safety
The new Golf Estate features as standard a total of six airbags: front airbags, side airbags and curtain airbags which extend along both sides of the vehicle.  Two additional side airbags are offered in the rear as an option. 

The front seats have whiplash-optimised head restraints and pyrotechnic belt tensioners with integrated seatbelt force limiters (the latter is also employed in the rear), while all models have five three-point seatbelts and five head restraints.  Also standard are Isofix child seat anchorage points at the two outer seating positions in the rear; and so that a rear-facing child seat can be safely carried in the front seat, the front passenger airbag can be easily deactivated by using the ignition key to operate a switch in the glovebox.

Front airbags
The front airbag system of the Golf Estate consists of a driver airbag with a volume of 60 litres and a front passenger airbag with a volume of 120 litres.  The steering column also contributes to passive safety.  It has a special clamping device for the length and height adjustment mechanism.  Together with the steering rod, this clamping device prevents the steering wheel from lifting in a crash.

Side airbags
The side airbags of the Golf Estate are located in the seatbacks of the front seats.  They protect the chest, abdomen and pelvis and are optimally tuned to the rigid side structure of the car.  An innovative sensor concept ensures very short triggering times.  Integrating the side airbags in the seatbacks guarantees optimal positioning of the driver and front passenger relative to the airbag.

Curtain airbags
A curtain airbag system for front and rear passengers is also standard.  These airbags cover the window area from the A- to the C-pillar and from the headliner to over the door shoulder to give maximum protection at all outer seating positions, regardless of body height.

Rear side airbag system
This is offered as an option on all Golf Estate models and is designed to give further protection to the bodies of the rear passengers in the event of a crash. For active safety measures, please see Braking section.

Child seat

An Isofix child seat has been developed for very small passengers in the Golf Estate, with a target age group between eight months and four years (or 9 to 18 kgs).  It fits into the Isofix fixtures which are standard in the two outer rear seats.  This type of fixture ensures that the seat is secured in place to optimum effect. 

SECURITY

The security systems on the Golf Estate were developed to be class-leading.  Highlights include:

  • an in-cut key which is more difficult to copy
  • free-wheeling mechanism for the door-locks which means if an attempt is made to turn the lock cylinder with a screwdriver, for example, the connection is broken to the door opening mechanism
  • enhanced steering lock clutch to resist forcing
  • protection boxes surrounding door lock mechanisms
  • alternating code, transponder-based engine immobiliser
  • alternating code for remote control central locking
  • an advanced alarm which includes interior protection (standard on Match and above).  The system is easily armed via the remote control key and causes an LED light mounted next to the driver’s door lock to flash
  • factory-fitted stereo with CD player which is Volkswagen-branded and security coded.  When the car is left switched off, it also has a flashing LED light which acts as a visual deterrent
  • electronic ‘CAN-bus’ system linking central locking, theft protection system, electric windows and mirrors, and internal lighting     

Line-up with insurance groups
Thanks to its impressive security and safety features, the Golf Estate has secured the following insurance group ratings from the ABI (Association of British Insurers):

S  
1.6-litre 102 PS   6
1.9-litre TDI 105 PS 6
SE  
1.6-litre 102 PS 6
1.9-litre TDI 105 PS    6
2.0-litre TDI 140 PS  12
Sportline  
1.6-litre 102 PS 6
2.0-litre 140 PS  12

WARRANTIES

The Golf Estate has a three year (first and second year manufacturer operated, third year retailer operated) mechanical warranty.  In addition, it comes with a class-leading 12 year anti-perforation guarantee, three year paint warranty and a year’s membership of Volkswagen Assistance which includes pan- European breakdown cover.  The assistance package can be extended after a year at minimal cost to the customer.

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