The Volkswagen Golf is one of the most successful cars of all time. However, with each new generation, drivers have seen incremental changes at best. With the new Golf 8, VW ushers in an advanced new generation. It puts the Golf into a slingshot and shoots it into the future.

Probably the world’s most beloved premium hatchback, the Volkswagen Golf, is set to tee off a new era of the Golf in its eight generation. If you are curious to learn how the Golf 8 will differ from the current outgoing Golf, we found out what the seven biggest changes will be.


  1. Matrix headlights

Golf 7 and 7.5 are equipped with halogen headlamps for both low and high beam, with LED daytime running lights. LED headlights are optional. We can expect the new Golf to be available with redesigned matrix LED lights – similar to that found on current Audi models. This will also be an optional extra.


  1. Mobile key

Once paired with the new Golf’s infotainment system, you will be able to use your smartphone as a mobile key, by holding it close to the door. This will surely eradicate the crises that ensues upon losing it to the crevices in the couch. This could also make it possible to leave the car somewhere (safe) for a friend or family member, without having to get the key to them. Traditionalists need not fear though – your new Golf will still come with its own key!


  1. Hybrid drivetrain

An exciting new change is in the new Golf’s engine line-up. While the current Golf (excluding R and GTI) rolls out with either a 1.0 or 1.4-litre TSI engine, the new Golf will be powered by Volkswagen’s new e-TSI engine. These semi-hybrid drivetrains will be available in both 1.0 and 1.5-litre capacities, with the semi-hybrid technology offering similar or better performance to the current Golf – while reducing fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.

While the engine models we will see in South Africa are still pending confirmation, we know the 1.4-litre TSi, 2.0-litre GTi and the 2.0-litre R drivetrains are coming. These will all come standard with DSG transmissions. South Africans love diesel engines, but Volkswagen (deliberately) burnt their fingers there, so we might never see a new diesel Golf again.

  1. New cockpit 

The new Golf will trump its predecessor with the all-new Innovation Cockpit. Consisting of a digital instrument panel and dashboard, the new cockpit will definitely feel like a leap from the current analogue instrument cluster and infotainment dashboard.

To add a cherry on top, the new Golf will also unveil a new head-up display: a directly projected virtual image on the windscreen, presenting the driver with a myriad of optional information to display within his direct field of vision. Even the traditional headlight/fog-lights control is being replaced with a small digital panel.


  1. Travel assist

The Golf 7/7.5 offers the driver safety features such as rear traffic alert and optional adaptive cruise control. But, the Golf 8 steps up the safety features with its new Travel Assist. Already available in the Passat, this includes adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assist, automatic emergency braking , pedestrian monitoring, trailer assist, and even an emergency system that will bring the car to a safe stop if the driver suddenly falls ill or becomes otherwise incapacitated.

These features will be semi-autonomous, which means that the driver must keep at least one hand on the steering wheel (which has built-in sensors) for these safety features to work.


  1. New DSG gear lever                

With no manual option in the new Golf 8, the current DSG gear lever will be replaced by the new shift-by-wire DSG. Although it might seem like a big leap from the ‘golf-ball’ lever of old, it will free up an ample amount of storage space. It wiil do so by eliminating the need for a mechanical linkage between the transmission and gear lever. The Golf has always been all about practicality!


  1. Car2X

A feature yet to be confirmed for South Africa is Car2X. Hopefully we see the Golf 8 as the first Volkswagen to have this feature. Within a radius of 800m, Car2X can exchange information with other similarly equipped vehicles and traffic infrastructures, within milliseconds. It can inform the driver, as well as drivers in other vehicles within proximity, about potential risks – like collisions or traffic jams. Equipped with this knowledge, South African motorist will definitely appreciate modern technology in vehicles more.


Is Golf 8 worth the wait?

For those contemplating the purchase of a new Golf 7.5, it’s worth waiting for the new and improved Golf 8. We have become accustomed to each new iteration of the Golf taking small steps of improvement over its predecessor. But, it seems Volkswagen is promising a game-changer with its Golf 8, that will be left incomparable with the departing models.


Source:  Autotrader