REVIEW: 2015 Volkswagen Golf TDI – Now An Even Hotter Little Hatch

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2015 Volkswagen Golf TDI Profile

The 2015 Volkswagen Golf is the 7th generation of the hot little German hatch. It’s got legions of fans but a growing list of competitors so it has to evolve or be cast aside. Thankfully, VW knows it has to work to keep the public’s loyalty and has redesigned the Golf, making lots of little changes that have resulted in a greatly improved car.

You’ll immediately recognize this as a Golf as things haven’t gone drastically different as far as its appearance goes, but it isn’t quite the same either. It’s a bit longer, a bit lower, and a bit wider so that the overall impression is sporty, fun, and less utilitarian than in previous years. Surfaces are curved rather than angular adding to the idea that this is a sexy little hatch not a boring economy car. It also means you’ve got more passenger and cargo space.

2015 Volkswagen Golf TDI Rear

The interior is simple, clean, and uncluttered. There is none of that shiny plastic trim masquerading as chrome or overly laminated plastic pretending to be wood that is often found in compact cars. This is a German car after all, so no need to make things fussy. While nothing is fancy, it’s not cheap either. It’s an appealing, quality interior, just one that’s not interested in impressing the neighbors.

The Volkswagen Golf comes with a nice suite of technology features with a 5.8″ touchscreen, AM/FM/CD player with MP3 playback and a 6-speaker sound system. There’s also Bluetooth connectivity and a multifunction steering wheel that are easy to use and help you keep focused on the road. The one omission that was truly noticeable was the lack of a rear view camera.

These aren’t required yet, so technically they don’t have to have one, but the sensor display that it puts on the screen instead feels outdated. It shows you colors that go from yellow to orange to red as you get closer to objects behind you, but it isn’t any better than using your mirrors or looking out the windows like back in the old days. It might not be a big car, but an actual camera would be nice.

2015 Volkswagen Golf TDI Controls

Th 2015 Volkswagen Golf TDI comes with a 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder diesel engine with 150 horsepower and 236 lb-ft of torque. That’s a lot of torque in a little car and it’s why this car is so much fun. Accelerating into heavy traffic isn’t just easy, it’s a joy, as you can pick your spot in the fray and then just hit the gas and zip into place. Our tester had a 6-speed automatic, but this is a car that really begs to be driven as a manual so you’ve got all the control.

The electric power steering is very responsive and makes navigating rush hour traffic almost a sport. This combines with good suspension to make the Golf a very comfortable, well-mannered ride with little body roll and great control. Pothole covered roads will not jar your spine nor will they have you fighting to keep the car in its lane.

2015 Volkswagen Golf TDI Dash

Volkswagen’s little diesel gets 31/43/36 city/highway/combined making this a very fuel efficient car. It also proves that you don’t have to drive a gas guzzler to have some fun on the road. If you haven’t driven a diesel recently, then whatever you think about them is likely wrong. They are not the noisy, smelly cars they once were and are a great alternative to hybrid and electric cars so give one a drive before you turn up your nose.

The 2015 Volkswagen Golf TDI has a fresh look that updates the car inside and out combined with good fuel economy and a fun drive. It’s a great choice for those seeking a fun, economical, diesel vehicle.

2015 Volkswagen Golf TDI S

Base Price: $23,095
Price As Tested: $23,790 (not including destination charge)


  • Fuel Economy
  • Responsive Steering
  • No-Fuss Design


  • No Rear View Camera
  • Too Mild Exterior