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New car reviews

2019 Volkswagen Golf SportWagen

finally a station wagon that isn't embarrassed to be a wagon

Lou Ann Hammond, Tue, 04 Jun 2019 01:53:08 PDT

* New 1.4-liter TSI engine replaces 1.8T on front-wheel-drive models

SE trim adds standard Adaptive Cruise Control, Lane Assist, and Light Assist

* All trims feature standard LED Daytime Running Lights (DRL) and LED taillights, SE adds standard LED headlights with AFS

* Golf SportWagen offers cargo volume similar to compact SUVs for size and versatility

* Available with 4Motion all-wheel-drive system on S trim with a 6-speed manual or 6-speed DSG automatic transmissions

Herndon, VA, USA - Volkswagen SportWagen models have long been a top choice for customers who want the space and utility of a compact SUV, but the nimbleness and fun-to-drive capabilities of a Golf. The stylish 2019 Golf SportWagen model presents a winning combination of versatility, comfort, and high-performance.

New for 2019

The 2019 Golf SportWagen is available in three trims-S, S 4Motion, and SE. For front-wheel-drive models, the 1.8T engine replaces the same 1.4T, 147hp powertrain found in the all-new 2019 Jetta. The S 4Motion retains the 1.8T engine. The 1.4T is paired with either a six-speed manual or an eight-speed automatic transmission, while the 1.8T is available with either a six-speed manual or a six-speed DSG automatic transmission.

The 2019 S and S 4Motion models offer an available Driver Assistance package including Forward Collision Warning and Autonomous Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Monitoring (Front Assist), Blind Spot Monitor, and Rear Traffic Alert.

SE models add 17-inch aluminum alloy wheels, LED headlights with the Adaptive Front-lighting System (AFS), fog lights, auto-dimming rearview mirror, Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC), Lane Keeping System, (Lane Assist), and High Beam Control (Light Assist).

Pricing for the 2019 Volkswagen Golf SportWagen S with a standard six-speed manual transmission and front-wheel drive starts at $21,895. The eight-speed automatic transmission starts at $22,995. Pricing for the 2019 Volkswagen Golf SportWagen S 4Motion with a standard six-speed manual transmission starts at $24,395. The six-speed DSG automatic transmission starts at $25,495. The destination charge for all Golf SportWagen models is an additional $895.

Exterior

The Golf SportWagen carries the unmistakable DNA of the Volkswagen Golf, with a shape and design elements that are defined and internationally-recognizable. Distinctive elements of the SportWagen, however, include a D-pillar, roof rails and a unique rear design that differentiate it from the Golf hatchback.

The front end features a hood that slopes down into the front fenders and sports angular horizontal design cues. An updated front grille, with upper chrome and lower chrome, freshen the SportWagen's look.

At the back, the Golf SportWagen features a full rear window, new LED taillights and a wide, low tailgate that integrates the license plate. With a load height of just 24.8 inches and a wide aperture of 40.6 inches, the Golf SportWagen has been designed with maximum functionality in mind.

The Golf SportWagen is 179.6 inches long and 70.8 inches wide-dimensions that ensure sporty proportions and aerodynamic performance of the vehicle. Thanks to the MQB architecture, which dictates a fixed relationship between the front-wheel centerline and the pedal box, the front wheels sit forward, giving a premium "cab backward" aesthetic. Along with the styling, these updated proportions help the SportWagen achieve a lower visual center of gravity and a more dynamic stance.

The SportWagen S model has 15-inch aluminum-alloy wheels. The SportWagen S 4Motion trim has 16-inch aluminum-alloy wheels. The SE trim has 17-inch aluminum-alloy wheels. All SportWagen models sport black roof rails.

Interior

The upscale environment of the SportWagen cabin is mostly shared with the Golf model, with increased interior space due to the wagon body style. Occupants have 94.3 cu-ft of passenger area volume.

Rear-seat leg- and shoulder room are 35.6 and 53.9 inches, respectively. Front seat passengers also benefit from the spacious SportWagen interior, with 41.2 inches of legroom and 55.9 inches across the shoulders. Both front and rear headroom are 38.6 inches.

The SportWagen has a spacious cargo hold that's in line with those of compact SUVs. With the rear seats up, the SportWagen boasts 30.4 cu-ft of space: when the 60:40 split back seat, that figure rises to an enormous 66.5 cu-ft of storage. The split-folding rear seats are accessed by release levers in the cargo area, helping to maximize convenience.

In addition to the expansive interior space, the driver controls are positioned to help optimize ergonomics and usability. The seat position, height of the shifter, and the spacing between the pedals are fine-tuned for increased driver comfort. This driver-centric design focus is evident from the center stack, which angles towards the driver, a feature frequently seen in premium luxury or performance vehicles. White backlighting for the controls further highlights this upscale ambiance, as well as the use of premium materials throughout, such as the leather-wrapped handbrake, shifter knob and steering wheel, the soft-touch plastics and piano-black trim.

The entry-level S trim comes well equipped with a long list of modern comfort, convenience and entertainment features, including power windows and mirrors, a multifunction steering wheel, and a rearview camera. The SE trim features KESSY keyless entry with push-button start.

MIB II Infotainment. All 2019 Golf SportWagen models feature Volkswagen's innovative MIB II touchscreen infotainment system. The display utilizes a capacitive-touch sensor (as in smartphone and tablet technology) rather than the more common resistive touchscreens that require pressure, enabling gesture controls like swiping and even pinch-zooming.

The S and S 4Motion models come with the Composition Color unit, which features a 6.5-inch capacitive touchscreen display. The infotainment system also offers SD card and USB (one port) multimedia interfaces, as well as a rearview camera and standard Bluetooth technology for compatible devices.

SE models come with a glass-covered 8.0-inch capacitive touchscreen display. Composition Media units offer one USB ports, a JPEG viewer, SiriusXM radio for a three month trial period, and HD Radio. It also can send and receive SMS text messages with Bluetooth with compatible phones and pair two phones simultaneously.

Volkswagen Car-Net. Volkswagen is committed to driving the development of more connected and intelligent vehicles, and the Car-Net connectivity system is a significant element in achieving that goal. Features available through Car-Net divide into three key areas: "App-Connect," "Security & Service," and "Guide & Inform."

Car-Net App-Connect smartphone integration for compatible devices is standard on all SportWagen models. App-Connect offers users the ability to run select smartphone apps directly on the vehicle's display through services such as Apple CarPlay TM, Android Auto TM, and MirrorLink.

Equipped on SE models, Car-Net Security & Service is a suite of elements that provides security features and also allows owners to access their VW remotely through vw.com/carnet as well as a smartphone app.

Customers purchasing new Volkswagen models equipped with VW Car-Net Security & Service will receive a six-month trial subscription from Verizon Connect Inc. that starts on date of your Volkswagen purchase for no additional charge. To extend the benefits of this system after the trial, customers can choose from several payment options: One year for $199 and two years for $378, or month-to-month for $17.99, plus applicable taxes and fees. App-Connect can be used free-of-charge and is optional as part of the subscription-based services.

Available Car-Net Security & Service features include Automatic Crash Notification, which can help automatically notify an operator who can quickly contact first responders in the event of a collision; Manual Emergency Call, a feature that allows for quick access to customer specialists at the touch of a button; Roadside Assistance, for added peace-of-mind in the event of trouble on the road; and Stolen Vehicle Location Assistance, which uses Car-Net Security & Service to assist law enforcement with locating your vehicle in the event that it is stolen.

Also, Car-Net Security & Service offers remote vehicle access, remote door lock and unlock, remote honk and flash of lights, last parked location information, and remote status check (doors and windows). Consumers will also be able to send a location from their connected smart device to the factory-installed compatible navigation system on select models. For consumers who prefer a more personal touch, Agent Destination Assist is also available.

Car-Net Security & Service also includes Family Guardian, which offers features such as: speed alert, which notifies you when the predetermined maximum speed limit exceeds; boundary alert, which lets you know when the vehicle has traveled outside of a pre-set virtual boundary; curfew alert, which notifies you if your car is driven while curfew alert is on; and valet alert, which lets you know if your vehicle is driven more than 0.2 miles from the valet drop-off location.

Diagnostics and maintenance information is also available through Car-Net Security & Service. In addition to the vehicle's warning and indicator lights, a Vehicle Health Report provides customers easy access to diagnostic information. When it's time for scheduled service, Car-Net Security & Service not only notifies the customer but provides a simple way to plan a dealer visit.

The available VW Car-Net app for a smartwatch (supports select Apple Watch and Android WearTM operating systems) allows VW customers to control a host of Security & Service features and functions available through the iPhone and AndroidTM apps and Customer Web Portal, directly from their wrist. Smartwatch wearers can keep tabs on their vehicle from afar, remotely locking and unlocking doors and viewing the status of doors, windows and sunroof (open or closed). These consumers can also find a parked vehicle more quickly, with a map of the current vehicle location, and get walking or driving directions to the car. Drivers can check their fuel level and receive alerts with a compatible smartwatch.

Powertrains

The 2019 Golf SportWagen front-wheel-drive adopts the 1.4-liter four-cylinder EA211 TSI engine from the all-new 2019 Jetta. The 1.4-liter turbocharged and direct-injection TSI engine makes 147 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque. As in the Jetta, the TSI engine is mated to either a six-speed manual gearbox or an eight-speed automatic transmission with Tiptronic in both S and SE trims.

The engine, internally coded EA211, features an air-to-water heat exchanger built directly into the intake module in place of an intercooler. The exhaust manifold is integrated into the head, reducing the distance that exhaust gases must travel to reach the turbocharger. This integration is designed to allow for faster response and catalytic converter light off. Valves work to regulate coolant flow into the head, which allows for rapid engine (and thus cabin) heating, as well as efficient cooling when the engine reaches average operating temperature. Both the intake and the exhaust valves feature variable valve timing, which results in both improved low-rpm performance, as well as increased torque throughout the rev range. A relatively high 10:1 compression ratio further helps the engine's efficiency, yet it still takes regular (87 octane) gasoline.

A Start/Stop System is standard on automatic-transmission front-wheel-drive models. This technology stops the engine during idle when the brake pedal is held (such as when waiting at a red light). When the brake pedal is released, the engine restarts.

The Golf SportWagen S 4Motion features a compact turbocharged and direct-injection 1.8-liter four-cylinder EA888 TSI gasoline engine. It produces 168 horsepower at 4,500 rpm, and torque peaks at 199 pound-feet, with the broad torque band, starting at 1,600 rpm and lasting until 4,400 rpm. Golf SportWagen S 4Motion models are mated to either a six-speed manual or an optional six-speed DSG automatic transmission with Tiptronic.

Front-wheel-drive models equipped with the six-speed manual achieve an EPA-estimated fuel economy rating of 29 mpg in city driving, 37 mpg on the highway, and 32 in combined driving. Front-wheel-drive models equipped with the optional eight-speed automatic are rated at 27 mpg in city driving, 36 mpg on the freeway, and 31 in combined driving. 4Motion models equipped with the optional six-speed DSG automatic are rated at 22 mpg in city driving, 29 mpg on the highway, and 24 in combined driving.

Chassis

The Golf SportWagen shares the same MQB chassis architecture as the rest of the Mk7 Golf line. The unitary construction chassis has two solid-mounted subframes with bolt-on front fenders and utilizes new technologies such as the laser clamp welder, which produces "wobble seam" welds in a wave pattern to maximize strength in a limited space, offering significantly more power than a traditional spot weld.

The Golf SportWagen models' stamped steel body and chassis boast a large percentage high-strength, hot-formed steel. This technology allows much of the frame and body to be constructed from thinner and lighter parts without any loss in strength.

The Golf SportWagen features a strut-type front suspension. At the back, it has a multilink arrangement with coil springs, telescopic dampers, and an anti-roll bar.

The seventh-generation Golf SportWagen braking system has 11.3-inch vented front discs and 10.7-inch solid rear discs with standard three-channel ABS with electronic brake pressure distribution. The rack-and-pinion steering features electric power assist and features a 13.6 to one ratio that allows for 2.76 turns from lock to lock.

All 2019 Golf SportWagen models are equipped with the XDS Cross Differential System-a feature previously only seen on the performance-oriented GTI model. This technology is designed to act somewhat like an electronic substitute for a traditional mechanical limited-slip differential, working by actively monitoring data from each wheel sensor. If the suspension becomes unloaded, the system can automatically apply braking to the driven inside wheel as needed to help reduce understeer (the tendency for the front wheels to run wide). This not only allows the Golf SportWagen's stability but can also help improve handling and cornering performance.

4Motion All-wheel-drive System

The Golf SportWagen S can be equipped with the 4Motion all-wheel-drive system. The latest-generation 4Motion system is activated before wheelspin occurs, helping eliminate traction losses. The system achieves this by using an advanced control function based on specific driving conditions. When operating under a relatively low load or when coasting, the front wheels are driven and the rear wheels are decoupled, helping to save fuel. However, the rear wheels can be engaged in fractions of a second whenever necessary via the center differential, which is activated by an electro-hydraulic oil pump.

A control unit continually calculates the ideal drive torque for the rear wheels and controls how much the multi-plate clutch should close by activating the oil pump. The oil pressure increases the contact pressure at the clutch plates in proportion to the torque desired at the rear axle. So, the amount of pressure applied to the clutch plates can be used to continuously vary the amount of torque going between the front and rear wheels, up to a maximum of 50 percent at the rear axle.

In addition to the center differential that acts longitudinally, electronic differential locks that are a function of the Electronic Stability Control (ESC) system work laterally. The system can briefly brake a wheel that is slipping, enabling the uninterrupted and stable transfer of drive power to the wheel on the opposite side.

Safety

To help protect occupants, the Golf SportWagen provides a combination of both passive and active safety systems. It features six airbags as standard (front and side airbags for front passengers and side curtain airbags for outboard seating positions), along with several electronic safety systems, such as an Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) and Electronic Stability Control (ESC).

A standard feature on the 2019 SportWagen is Volkswagen's Automatic Post-Collision Braking System. This builds on the premise that a collision is rarely a single, instantaneous action, but rather a series of events that follow the initial impact-the most significant of which can cause additional accidents. The Automatic Post-Collision Braking System helps address this, in specific crash scenarios, by applying the brakes when a primary collision is detected by the airbag sensors, thus potentially reducing residual kinetic energy and, in turn, the chance of additional damage.

The SportWagen also includes Volkswagen's Intelligent Crash Response System that shuts off the fuel pump, unlocks the doors, and switches on the hazard lights if the car is involved in certain types of collisions.

All SportWagen models feature a standard rearview camera.

Driver-Assistance Systems

To meet the demands of American drivers, the 2019 Golf SportWagen offers a comprehensive suite of driver-assistance technology. Available features include Forward Collision Warning and Autonomous Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Monitoring (Front Assist); Blind Spot Monitor Rear Traffic Alert; Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC); Lane Keeping System (Lane Assist); and High Beam Control (Light Assist).

Front Assist, standard on SE models and available on S and S 4Motion models via the Driver Assistance package, is intended to warn drivers of potential frontal collisions (Forward Collision Warning) with vehicles and pedestrians, and in some cases provide automatic braking assistance (Autonomous Emergency Braking).

Within physical system limits, Forward Collision Warning warns the driver of potential critical front-end collision situations, both acoustically and visually by a warning symbol in the instrument cluster if the car is traveling above 18 mph. Furthermore, an automatic jolt of the brakes can warn the driver of the danger. If the driver fails to brake, or if the car is traveling below 18 mph, Autonomous Emergency Braking is activated to help slow the vehicle. If the brake pedal is applied but the driver brakes too lightly, the brake pressure is increased by the system (Braking Support).

Blind Spot Monitor is standard on SE models and available on S and S 4Motion models via the Driver Assistance package. Blind Spot Monitor uses two radar sensors at the rear of the vehicle to scan the approaching traffic and is intended to warn drivers of potential danger in adjacent lanes. If the driver uses the turn signal to indicate a lane change while a vehicle is detected in a blind spot, the system utilizes a flashing LED symbol in the outer area of the side mirrors. Even if the driver does not use a turn signal, the LED symbol in the mirror will illuminate if a vehicle is detected in the blind spot. The system is designed to help alert drivers in specific situations; stationary objects or oncoming vehicles do not trigger warnings, nor do vehicles more than one lane across away from the car.

If combined with Lane Assist (SE models, see below) the system not only warns the driver with the flashing LED symbol if a vehicle is detected in the blind spot but within system limits, it can also countersteer to help keep the car in the lane even if the turn signal is on. If the driver still tries to steer out of the road, the system will warn with an additional vibration of the steering wheel.

The Rear Traffic Alert system, standard on SE models and available on S and S 4Motion models via the Driver Assistance package, is intended to detect vehicles approaching from the side that may be difficult for the driver to see while reversing. It offers a sizable range of about 65 feet on either side of the vehicle and will present a visual and an acoustic warning if a potential collision with a crossing vehicle is detected. If the driver does not react, the system can apply the brakes to help mitigate and, in the best case, can help prevent a collision. The system is activated by putting the car in reverse.

Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC), standard on SE models, uses a forward facing radar to maintain a set speed while helping maintain a set distance to the vehicle in front. The driver sets the pace and the desired spacing via buttons on the multifunction steering wheel and can further use those buttons to adjust and cancel the ACC function while the accelerator can be used to override the ACC function. Pressing the brakes always cancels the ACC function. All ACC-related system messages appear in the central multifunction display. When the roadway ahead of the vehicle is clear, the system maintains the set speed. Golf SportWagen models fitted with ACC can match a car in front and come to a stop if the vehicle in front does.

Lane Keeping System (Lane Assist) is standard on SE models. When driving above 40 mph, if there is an indication that the vehicle is unintentionally straying from its lane without using a turn signal, Lane Assist actively countersteers to help keep the vehicle in the lane. The system's camera recognizes visible lane markings and, using a special algorithm, calculates the risk of the car leaving the path. If the driver takes his or her hands off the wheel for a defined period of time, the system provides an audible warning and a visual signal in the instrument cluster, asking the driver to take over.

The system can work in the dark and in fog, but it will not engage if it cannot properly detect lane markings. If the turn signal has been set before crossing a lane marking, the Lane Assist system will not engage or give a warning. The driver can "override" the system at any time by applying minimal force to the steering wheel.

High Beam Control (Light Assist), standard on SE models, automatically raises the high headlamp beams above 40 mph on dark or poorly lit roads, if there is no oncoming traffic detected.

Warranty

For the 2019 model year, Volkswagen Golf SportWagen models in the United States will come with the People First Warranty, a six-year or 72,000-mile (whichever occurs first) bumper-to-bumper New Vehicle Limited Warranty, the remainder of which can be transferred to a subsequent owner throughout its duration.

The six-year/72,000-mile People First Warranty includes powertrain coverage for engines, transmissions and optional 4Motion all-wheel-drive systems. Additionally, all the elements of the remaining warranty coverage y can be transferred to a subsequent owner.

Most mainstream competitors to the Volkswagen brand in the United States such as Honda, Toyota, and Ford offer only a three-year/36,000 mile basic warranty and a five-year/60,000 mile powertrain warranty on their cars and SUVs. While Hyundai and Kia offer a five-year/60,000 mile basic warranty and a higher time and mileage limit on their limited powertrain warranties, if the vehicle is sold to a second owner, the limited powertrain warranty is not transferable beyond five years or 60,000 miles from the date it was first sold new.

Competitors:

Subaru Outback

Subaru Crosstrek

Toyota Prius V

S Manual transmission $21,895

S Automatic transmission $22,995

S 4Motion Manual transmission $24,395

S 4Motion Automatic transmission$25,495

SE Automatic transmission $29,995

2019 Volkswagen Golf SportWagen 1.4T SE I test drove had a starting MSRP of $29,995 and finished at $30,890.

 

 


2019 Volkswagen Golf SportWagen SE


2019 Volkswagen Golf SportWagen SE


2019 Volkswagen Golf SportWagen SE


2019 Volkswagen Golf SportWagen SE

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