2020 Volkswagen Golf

2020 MODEL
$23,195
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7.4

Overall Rating

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2020 Volkswagen Golf Complete In-depth Review & Buying Guide

Updated on: February 3, 2020
Aaron Smith's image

Aaron Smith

Automotive Journalist

Volkswagen Golf has been a staple car from the VW lineup. It has evolved time and again to fulfil the driving requirements of the newer generation of drivers.  It started as a replacement for the Beetle in 1974 which later went on to become Volkswagen’s best selling model . The completely overhauled interior gives it a nice sense of modernity with a touch of technology, Volkswagen has changed the front and back bumpers with LED taillights with Audi style indicators certainly gives the new VW Golf a cooler feel than its predecessors.

 

 

See detailed review »

Pros

Upmarket interior

Handles like a Go-Kart!

Refined Engine

Cons

Poor illumination from the headlights

Mediocre Performance

What's New?

Car-Net Telematics System

Standard In-Car WiFi

New 16 inch wheels 

Standard Panoramic Sunroof


Features

vehicle bio

base price

$23195

bodystyle

4dr Hatchback

passenger capacity

5

drivetrain

FWD

engine type

displacement

85 cu.in.

horsepower

147 hp @ 5000 rpm

torque

184 lbs.-ft. @ 1400 rpm

transmission

6 speed manual

chassis

frame type

Unibody

suspension front

Independent front strut suspension w/anti-roll bar

suspension rear

Independent rear multi-link suspension w/anti-roll bar

brake rotors (f/r)

61.0/59.8

dimensions

wheelbase

103.8 in.

length

167.6 in.

width

70.8 in.

height

58.2 in.

curb weight

2963 lbs.

ground clearance

5.4 in.

capacity

passenger volume

93.5 cu ft.

cargo volume

53.7 cu ft.

payload capacity

1021 lbs.

performance

zero to 60 mph

7.7 sec.

standing ¼-mile

16 sec.

fuel economy

city/combined/highway

22/25/31 mpg

warranty

basic warranty

4 yr./ 50000 mi.

powertrain warranty

4 yr. / 50000 mi.

corrosion warranty

7 yr. /100000 mi.


Pictures

Exterior
Interior

Styles

 2020 Volkswagen Golf in Deep Black Pearl color  2020 Volkswagen Golf in Night Blue Metallic color  2020 Volkswagen Golf in Platinum Gray Metallic color  2020 Volkswagen Golf in Pure White color
Deep Black Pearl

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.

Ratings

Features

8.3

Engine And Performance

7.5

Fuel Economy

6.0

Interior

8.3

Safety

6.5

7.4

OVERALL RATING

Trims and Configurations

MSRP


 2020 Volkswagen Golf Base

Base

power
147 hp @ 5000 rpm
fuel
Gasoline
mpg
32 combined

$23,195


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
4dr Hatchback (1.4L 4cyl 6M) Starting at $23,195 MSRP (29/32/37) 147 hp @ 5000 rpm, 1.4 L, Inline 4, Gasoline
6-speed manual front wheel drive 5

Expert Review

7.4

Overall Rating


People loved the small wonder from Germany because it was compact, powerful and most importantly fun to drive.  It carries an inline-four, 1.4 L Turbocharged mill at the heart which has been downsized from the previous generation Golf. It is an ideal car for enthusiasts who seek thrill and practicality without burning a hole in their pockets. There will be only one trim on offer and will have all the safety and comfort features as standard which were earlier optional. Let’s see if the new Golf provides the same level of fun as it’s predecessors.

Volkswagen Golf has quite a few cars in its competition like the Chevrolet Cruze Hatchback, Toyota Corolla Hatchback, Mini Cooper Clubman and the Honda Civic Hatchback.

2020 Volkswagen golf front view
2020 Volkswagen golf rear view

8.3/10
Features

 

7.5/10
Engine and Performance

 

6.0/10
Fuel Economy

 

8.3/10
Interior

 
 

6.5/10
Safety

 
 
 

2020 Volkswagen Golf Features

8.3/10

The Golf is available in a standalone TSI trim and a 147-horsepower engine and a six-speed manual transmission. You also get an eight-speed automatic transmission is available for $800.

Trims

Golf TSI

MSRP(M/T)

$23,195

MSRP(A/T) $23,995

Features

6.5-inch glass Touchscreen Display

 

Keyless access with push-button start

 

SiriusXM All Access

 

VW Car-Net Security

 

Adaptive Cruise Control

 

Rear Traffic Alert

 

60/40 Split-folding rear seats

 

Automatic Post Collision Braking System

 

Seven Stability-enhancing Systems

We Recommend

As a single trim available, we suggest you go with the eight-speed automatic transmission which helps you a lot in city traffic and curvy roads.

2020 Volkswagen Golf Engine and Performance

7.5/10

The Golf is powered by a 1.4L turbocharged engine which spits out 147 HP of power and produces a class-leading 184 ft-lbs of torque. The power is carried to the front wheels via a 6-speed transmission which scatters the power evenly across the rev-band. An eight-speed automatic transmission is also available as an option. The gear shifts are quick and smooth, especially in the new 8-speed automatic gearbox. This gearbox also incorporates the paddle shifters which complement the sportiness of the engine. You also get paddle shifters which elevate the driving pleasure to a different level.

Models

Volkswagen Golf

Honda Civic Hatchback(LX)

Hyundai Elantra (GT)*

Toyota Corolla (SE)

MSRP

$23,195

$21,650

$21,380

$22,290

Engine

1.4L Turbo I4

1.5L Turbo I4

2.0L I4

2.0L I4

Transmission

6-speed Manual

6-speed Manual

6-speed Auto with SHIFTRONIC

6-Speed Manual with OVERDRIVE

Horsepower

147hp

@5000rpm

174hp

@6000rpm

161hp

@6200rpm

169hp

@6600rpm

Torque

184lb-ft

@1400rpm

162lb-ft

@1700rpm

150lb-ft

@4700rpm

151lb-ft

@4400rpm

The power figures in the Golf may not be impressive when pitted against its competition, but the torque is class-leading. But with the smallest engine of 1.4L, the difference in weight helps it get an edge over its competition. The 2020 Honda Civic is the most powerful of the lot with 174hp and 162 lb-ft of torque.

Acceleration

The Volkswagen Golf sprints from 0 to 60 in just 7.6 while crossing the quarter-mile mark in 15.9 seconds which is blindly quick for an entry-level hatchback. Out on the road, there is enough grunt at all instances for performing that odd overtake in the city or on the highway. These figures are very impressive for a car priced around 20k.

2020 Volkswagen Golf propels from standstill to 60 in 7.6 seconds

Models

Volkswagen Golf

Honda Civic Hatchback(LX)

Hyundai Elantra(GT)*

Toyota Corolla (SE)

0-60 MPH

7.6 sec

8.2 sec

9.0 sec

8.3 sec

Quarter mile

15.9 sec

14.7 sec

16.8 sec

16.4 sec

Emission (Tons/yr of CO2 Emissions @ 15k mi/yr)

5.5*

5.3

6.8*

5.7*

The Golf breaches the 60 MPH barrier faster than any other car in its competition. The Golf is the quickest of the lot thanks to its least curb weight and clever structural engineering. The Honda Civic Hatchback covers the quarter-mile in 14.7 seconds which makes it the fastest in the competition.

Ride and Handling

As always, driving the Volkswagen Golf is a joy to have. In addition to offering stability at high speeds, the 2020 iteration of the classic hatch offers impressive steering. No matter whether it’s strict traffic conditions or open countryside roads, a ride with Volkswagen Golf is nothing short of a well-balanced and powerful road cruise.  It is surprisingly stable and confidence-inspiring while sweeping corners. However, swerve left and right suddenly and you might feel a little Body Roll. It won't throw you around the cabin though.

The small footprint with accurate steering and a suspension setup towards the stiffer side, makes the Golf feel like a Go-Kart. The redesigned MQB Architecture improves the structural rigidity thus providing a much-planted ride.  The ride may feel stiff overall but when doing city speeds, the Golf surprises with its ride. It's not harsh or overly stiff and the bumps or undulations on the road are very well absorbed by the Golf's suspension. The Golf is a capable vehicle to make people reach places even in bad weather conditions. Nonetheless, the vehicle isn’t advised to be used frequently for endeavours involving extreme weather conditions.

Braking 

A vehicle capable of doing 60 MPH in under 8 seconds needs equally capable brakes to put a stop to it. The Golf comes equipped with disc brakes on all four wheels capable of bringing it to a halt in 129 ft from 60 MPH. These figures are below average for the kind of performance it offers in acceleration. The brakes offer a good amount of bite initially but it decreases gradually as the pressure is increased on the pedal.

Models

Volkswagen Golf

Honda Civic Hatchback(LX)

Hyundai Elantra(GT)*

Toyota Corolla (SE)

Brake Front (in.)

11.3

11.1

11.0

11.5

Brake Rear (in.)

10.7

10.2

10.3

10.5

60-0 MPH (ft)

129

115(est.)

119

125

The Volkswagen Golf has the least powerful brakes of the lot as it takes the longest to come to a halt. The Honda has the most powerful brakes with a 60-0 stopping distance of 115 feet. In spite of weighing the least, the Volkswagen Golf doesn't have an advantage over the others.

2020 Volkswagen Golf Fuel Economy

6.0/10

The Golf provides a pretty good fuel economy. Volkswagen had earlier degraded from the thirsty 1.8L power plant with the sole purpose of increasing fuel economy. The new Golf now gives 29 MPG in the city and 37 MPG on the highway. It is a significant improvement in the figures as compared to the previous generation Golf which gave a combined economy of 30 MPG.

Models

Volkswagen Golf

(Value Edition)

Honda Civic Hatchback(LX)

Hyundai Elantra (GT)*

Toyota Corolla (SE)

MPG (city)

29

31

25

28

MPG (highway)

37

40

32

37

MPG (combined)

34

34

27

33

The Golf has finally caught up with the Honda Civic which provides the best MPG of the lot. With a combined MPG of 34, the Volkswagen Golf and Honda Civic go neck in neck as the class leaders. But given the fact that the civic weighs more and even produces more power, it clearly has the class-leading fuel economy.

2020 Volkswagen Golf Interior

8.3/10

Volkswagen Golf can accommodate for 5 passengers with nice and comfortable seats for all driving position is really well and comfortably equipped with all necessary components around the driver. The materials used inside feel premium. No cheap plastics can be spotted. The 1.4T S trim comes fitted with a 6.5-inch touchscreen with clear visibility while the 1.4T SE trim has an 8.0 inch HD display with crisper colours and even better visibility. The steering feels premium to hold and is fattened at the bottom to give it a sporty appeal.

The interior of the Golf is pretty much the same with the exact same dimensions and seating from the 2019 model. It actually is a small car from the outside at 167.6 inches in length. But clever space management provides a spacious interior. According to Volkswagen, the biggest update is on the inside as they have opted for digital evolution. They quote that the only analogue part on the inside is the steering wheel! The steering feels premium to hold and is fattened at the bottom to give it a sporty appeal. Subtle chrome accents can be observed around the front dashboard.

2020 VW Golf is pretty much the same with the exact same dimensions and seating from the 2019 model

The high roofline enables easy getting in and out of the car at the rear. The cabin feels airy and encourages comfortable long drives. The rear seats are positioned high enough to make sure that you don't sit in knees-in-the-nose posture.

Models

Volkswagen Golf

Honda Civic Hatchback(LX)

Hyundai Elantra (GT)*

Toyota Corolla (SE)

Front (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (In.)

38.4/55.9/41.2

39.3/56.9/42/3

39.1/56.2/42.2

38.4/53.9/42.0

Second (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (In.)

38.1/53.9/35.6

37.4/55.0/36.0

38.5/55.4/34.8

37.6/54.5/29.9

Comparing it to its rivals, you will be happy to see that the Golf, can now stand head-to-head with all the other popular cars in the segment. The Golf manages to especially shine on the rear passenger front as it is bundled with plenty of room there. Overall though, it's still the Honda Civic that beats all others in this segment, owing to Honda's "Man Maximum Machine Minimum" design philosophy.

Interior Features

VW had thoroughly updated the Golf for its latest avatar and courtesy of that, you have a lot of features on the inside, to add to your conveniences. Here is a list of few of the most notable features on the inside

  • Push-button start with Keyless access
  • Leatherette-wrapped, multi-function steering wheel
  • Climate control
  • One-touch up/down power windows
  • Heated leatherette front seats
  • Cruise control
  • Steering mounted shift paddles

Infotainment

One of the leading highlights of the 2020 Volkswagen Golf is its stylish and superb infotainment system. While the S trim comes with a 6.5-inch infotainment screen, the SE trim offers a bigger 8.0-inch screen to the Golf passengers. In addition, to enjoying connectivity via means of Bluetooth, the smart infotainment system provides support for powerful features like intuitive proximity sensor display and voice control.

2020 Volkswagen Golf is equipped with an updated 6.5-inch infotainment
  • AM/FM/HD Radio 
  • 1 USB Type-C port
  • 6 Speaker audio system with Bluetooth
  • VW App-Connect and Car-Net
  • Rearview Camera 
  • In-Car WiFi

Cargo Capacity

For such a compact car is the least long in the class Volkswagen golf doesn't have the top cargo volume but it certainly isn't bad for such a small car compared to others it has 22.8 cubic feet of storage space in the back the low rise of the cargo hold makes it easy to put stuff in the back and the space is not cramped so it's easy to put a lot of baggage easily in the back.

Models

Volkswagen Golf

Honda Civic Hatchback(LX)

Hyundai Elantra (GT)*

Toyota Corolla (SE)

Cargo Volume (cu.-ft)

22.8

25.7

24.9

17.8

The Honda Civic has the most generous luggage space with 25.7 cubic feet followed closely by the Hyundai Elantra with 24.9. The Golf comes in third followed by the Toyota Corolla.

2020 Volkswagen golf interior
2020 Volkswagen golf
2020 Volkswagen golf steering

2020 Volkswagen Golf Exterior

The 2020 Volkswagen Golf is pretty much the same with a few minor modifications. The basic two-box design connects it to its predecessors all the way to the Mk 1 which saved Volkswagen from bankruptcy. The car has become sharper with a new set of 16-inch wheels and a redesigned set of headlamps. 

Do the dimensions of the Golf resemble its predecessors?

At 167.6 inches, the Golf is the shortest car off the lot. The design has mostly been carried forward from the last iteration with a few aesthetic updates. This means that the overall dimensions remain the same. It is a low slung car at 5.4 inches which helps in the driving dynamics. The overall construction of the car instills confidence to attack corners at more speeds. With a tweaked MQB platform, it has improved the overall rigidity of the vehicle.

2020 Volkswagen Golf is pretty much same with a few minor modifications

Models

Volkswagen Golf

(Value Edition)

Honda Civic Hatchback(LX)

Hyundai Elantra (GT)*

Toyota Corolla (SE)

Length (in)

167.6

177.9

170.9

172.0

Width (in)

70.8

70.8

70.7

70.5

Height (in)

58.2

56.5

57.7

57.1

Ground clearance (in)

5.4

5.1

5.9

5.1

Wheelbase (in)

103.8

106.3

104.3

103.9

Track width (in) F/R

61/59.8

60.5/61.1

61.1/61.5

60.2/60.8

Curb weight (lbs)

2873

2901

3040

3060

*2019 figures used for reference purpose

On the weight front, the new Golf has shed a lot of weight off its back in this new generation. That helps its cause in the handling and the efficiency figures. The ground clearance is comparable as well to others and is bigger than some of the rivals.

What are the most attractive features?

There are plenty of features on offer in the new VW Golf that will keep the eys of onlookers, hooked on to the car. Here is a list of few of the most notable features

  • Power tilt-and-slide sunroof
  • 16" aluminum alloys
  • Automatic LED Tailights and DRL's
  • Heated, foldable, power-adjustable ORVMs
  • Automatic windshield wipers
  • heated front washer nozzles
2020 Volkswagen golf front view
2020 Volkswagen golf front view
2020 Volkswagen golf
2020 Volkswagen golf
2020 Volkswagen golf rear view
2020 Volkswagen golf rear view
2020 Volkswagen golf side view
2020 Volkswagen golf side view
2020 Volkswagen golf headlight
2020 Volkswagen golf headlight
2020 Volkswagen golf taillight
2020 Volkswagen golf taillight

2020 Volkswagen Golf Safety

6.5/10

The Volkswagen Golf strictly adheres to safety and reliability. Ranging from ABS and Driveline Traction Control to Rear Child Safety Locks, the ride ensures you stay safe and enjoy your journey without any security issue.

Safety Features

  • Dual front and front side airbags, front and rear curtain airbags
  • Tire Pressure Monitoring System
  • Automatic Post-Collision Braking System
  • Intelligent Crash Response System
  • Rear Traffic Alert
  • Blind Spot Monitor
  • Forward Collision Warning and Autonomous Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Monitoring (Front Assist)

2020 Volkswagen Golf Competition

Volkswagen Golf vs. Honda Civic 

The advantage that Golf features over Honda Civic are several. The powerful infotainment system, better safety systems, shorter length and faster acceleration are some of the many.l. Golf provides more performance and is the quicker of the two to 60mph. It even handles much better as compared to the Civic due to its rigid chassis and stiffer suspension. Considering the similar price range of the two, the Golf provides more bang for the buck value.

2020 Honda Civic

Volkswagen Golf vs. Hyundai Elantra 

With a 2L engine, the Elantra sure provides much more power. But this comes in at a loss of handling and acceleration. Because of the added weight, the Elantra is actually the slowest of the lot and gives the poorest MPG. All of this along with a premium price tag does not make it a strong case against the well rounded Golf.
 

2020 Hyundai Elantra

Volkswagen Golf vs. Toyota Corolla

The Toyota Corolla has more power than golf. But the extra power comes at the cost of a heavier ride which fiddles with the driving dynamics. This makes it a very poor handler when compared to the nimble Volkswagen Golf. It has the least luggage volume which takes practicality off of it. This along with being costlier than the Golf makes it the least preferable of the lot.

2020 Toyota Corolla

 

2020 Volkswagen Golf Final Verdict

Volkswagen Golf is a powerful car to go for, no doubt about that. If you are seeking a car with a powerful engine, sleek design, and greater cargo capacity then there’s no other better option than that of the Golf. Plus, it offers good fuel economy too. Volkswagen Golf is nice and compact vehicle for the job it's sensibly placed interior is nice and it's comfortable, all in all, there is tough competition in this class of the industry but Volkswagen Golf isn't a bad buy and if you are planning to buy one you would not be disappointed.