This is how the new Golf Cabriolet from VW drives
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VW Golf Cabriolet 2011: The roll bar of the previous model has disappeared.
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The Golf Cabriolet is again equipped with a fabric roof.
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The cockpit is designed in the familiar VW style.
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There is space for two people in the rear.
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When closed, the Golf Cabrio looks conventional and thus follows the line that VW has chosen for the Golf.
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The old and new Golf in comparison.
VW is building an open Golf again. The design is simple, the price significant, and the fun factor high. The first test drive.
GWithout illusions, life would be poorer, clearly. What would a person be without beautiful dreams, and what would owning a convertible be if you didn’t buy a virtual ticket to the world of the rich and famous between Miami Beach and the Côte d’Azur?
In fact, VW is presenting the new open Golf on the French Mediterranean coast, where the end of the Easter holiday season is in constant traffic, but at least at a high level: namely with a slight wind in your hair and a Mediterranean mildness, which is also found in Germany now and then hires, but which is by no means always reliable. ‘
Nevertheless, we Germans are number one convertible in Europe. That has to do with the relative prosperity, of course – but maybe also with the fact that our story includes a car that made it possible for a large crowd to paddle around in the summer: the Golf Cabriolet.
Anyone who has this in mind is all the more surprised that VW did without the open Golf for so long. Consistently inconsistent work was done on this successful model in Wolfsburg, leaving two generations of the Golf completely without a convertible (number two and number five were only closed), and the open-top Golf 4, which was phased out in 2002, was technically little more than a redesigned Golf 3 It is said that Ferdinand Piëch, chairman of the company’s supervisory board and previously chief executive, has slowed down the vigor of the convertible faction: the patriarch does not appreciate drafts.
Anyone who starts the new convertible today will of course be exposed to the elements in this model too, that’s the essence of open-top driving. Thank goodness VW opted for the classic shape, i.e. for the soft top. The windshield remains aesthetically short, and the occupants are really blown through when the side windows are also lowered. This has to be the case – anyone who drives a convertible and moves all the windows up has not understood something and should perhaps try a sunroof.
What impresses most about the new open Golf is the serenity with which it comes into service on the road. If a car lacks a roof, it lacks crucial stability, and this deficiency has to be compensated, usually with stiffening struts in the vehicle floor. Whatever they did at VW, you can maneuver the open Golf over level crossings, cobblestones and similar bumps without it noticeably twisting or shaking, and it also comes out without crackling noises from the body or the convertible top mechanism. The price you pay for it is higher weight – the open Golf weighs around 180 kilograms more than the closed one.
This is not in the sense of fuel-saving lightweight construction, but it is inherent in the convertible construction. Nevertheless, VW tries to be thrifty and offers a model that, according to EU standards, should only consume 4.4 liters per 100 kilometers. Depending on the current situation, this is only possible with a diesel engine, and although this drive technology has long been established for convertibles too, one can also say what it is like: a diesel engine, driven open, doesn’t sound good.
If you ignore the noise, the engine is a really interesting drive because it goes to work calmly and, with its torque of 250 Newton meters, keeps the not exactly light car moving very well. But when you have a 40-tonne truck in front of you on the small serpentine roads between Nice and St-Tropez with a queue of ten or twelve cars in tow, then you can only do one thing with this economy diesel: wait.
Of course, there is also more power to be had for the open-top Golf, with the gasoline engines going all the way to the GTI engine with its 210 hp. Even the 160 PS variant is loyal to the gas, and in combination with the seven-speed dual clutch transmission you get an uncomplicated and very lively car. Perhaps with such engine performance, the driving comfort that VW offers in the Golf has already been a bit exaggerated. In the compact class, no other model rolls as smoothly as the Golf, and the higher weight of the convertible reinforces this effect. In corners, however, the car quickly looks top-heavy, the sportiness built into modern cars everywhere may not appear on the country road.
The comfort rating also includes the convertible top, which VW from Audi, or better: from its supplier Edscha. If you drive the Golf Cabriolet closed, there is hardly any difference to steel roofs in terms of sound insulation. Suddenly the diesel also becomes very quiet again, and on top of that there is an extra that the driver unfortunately cannot see for himself: the convertible top does not inflate when driving.
Lots of extras, one thing is missing
At the end of June, the open Golf comes on the market, the cost price is 23,625 euros, but there is the 1.2-liter petrol model with a turbo charger and 105 hp. The car is equipped as standard with the usual safety details (ABS, ESP, front and side airbags, knee airbag), plus air conditioning with a coolable glove compartment, split rear seat backrest and – an electric soft top operation. Within nine seconds, the golf roof swings back and folds in a Z-shape behind the rear seats. The nicest thing about the top, however, is that you can open and close it while driving, at least up to 30 km / h. So there doesn’t have to be any embarrassing delays at the red light.
Of course, the Golf Cabriolet is also missing something – the roll bar that VW has held onto for so long. It once served the stability of the body, and it was able to protect the occupants in the event of a rollover. But he also gave the Golf Cabrio the nickname “strawberry basket”, which is not always nicely meant. Another solution is the state of the art in 2011: If the car really turns the wheels upwards, two individual protective bars shoot out from behind the rear seats. This is what all manufacturers do now.
Not everyone, however, has two convertibles in the model range, has decided on a third and is fighting against rumors about a fourth. The fact is: The VW Eos with its three-part folding steel roof is to be further developed despite the new Golf Cabrio. The model revision from the beginning of this year is not the last expansion stage, a second generation of this car will come, it is said. It has already been officially announced that the new VW Beetle, who comes in October 2012 will again have a convertible set aside. And then the BlueSport project, a two-seater roadster with a mid-engine and rear-wheel drive, haunts its prototype "World online" reported two years ago. The official language for this car today is: "No comment."
VW would be the only brand in the group that could introduce this car without major contortions – because it would not dispute any other VW. On the other hand, offshoots for Porsche or Audi, which made the project really economical, would be a problem: The successor to the Porsche Boxster, a roadster with a mid-engine and rear-wheel drive, is ready and will probably come in 2012. And the architecture of the next Audi TT has already been firmly decided: it remains with the front engine and front or all-wheel drive. It could be that the little Volkswagen roadster will remain something of a dream.
The trip to the presentation of the Golf Cabriolet was supported by Volkswagen.
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