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Volkswagen Golf 7
The all-new VW Golf Mark 7 for 2013 was unveiled at an event in Berlin on Tuesday night. It is now 36 years since Volkswagen launched the first Golf, since when it has sold 29 million models, including famous variants like the Golf GTi.
The new Golf is up to 100kg lighter than the previous model (depending on engine used), and is built on the Volkswagen Group's new MQB flexible platform that saw its first outing in the recently launched Audi A3, and will go onto be used in a vast array of vehicles produced by the company under its various brands.
The new car is 4.255m, 56 mm longer than the old car, with a 59 mm longer wheelbase of 2,637 mm. The front wheels are 43 mm further forward, helping to generate more interior space, while the Golf is also 13 mm wider, at 1,799 mm, and 28 mm lower, at 1,452 mm. This helps to create a 10 per cent improvement in the drag co-efficient, which is now 0.27 Cd.
Rear legroom is longer by 15 mm, and the front seats have been moved 20 mm further back. The boot is 30 litres larger, at 380 litres, with a low 685 mm sill to make loading effortless. The front passenger seat can also - optionally - fold fully forward, creating a loadspace up to 2.4m long.
Inside, the centre console is now angled more towards the driver, and features a new generation of touchscreen infotainment systems. All Golf models now have a touchscreen system as standard, starting in the UK with a 5.8-inch colour display system, and rising to the range-topping sat-nav system with eight-inch screen.
In the compartment under the centre armrest, there is available as an option a universal phone holder with inductive aerial, which increases the signal strength of the phone but also reduces the drain on the phone's battery.
Standard on all new Golf models is a multi-collision brake system. This automatically brakes the vehicle after a collision, to reduce kinetic energy significantly and thus minimise the chance of a second impact. The PreCrash system is also standard: if it detects the possibility of an accident, it pre-tensions seatbelts and closes the windows and sunroof, leaving just a small gap, to ensure the best possible protection from the airbags.
Adaptive Cruise Control is a standard feature in UK Golfs from SE models upwards; the system features Front Assist, which can bring the vehicle to a complete stop and operates at speeds of up to 150 km/h (approx. 93 mph); and City Emergency Braking, which operates at up to 30 km/h (approx. 19 mph), and can reduce or prevent the chance of accidents occurring.
A Driver Alert System monitors the driver's inputs, to detect any signs of tiredness; while a camera-operated Lane Assist system can help keep the car in a specific lane, providing countersteering assistance where necessary. A Dynamic Light Assist system optionally masks the vehicle's high beam lighting, making for brilliant illumination without dazzling on-coming traffic.
Park Assist also features as an option, and the new Golf will even park itself in a space no more than 80 cm longer than the vehicle.
As an option the Golf can feature four modes: Eco, Sport, Normal and Individual; with a DSG twin-clutch gearbox a fifth option - Comfort - is also offered. These modes alters the throttle mapping and engine management.
Engines and economy
The new Golf features new petrol and diesel engines, all of which incorporate Stop/Start and battery regeneration systems. At launch, the petrol engines are a 1.2-litre TSI 85 PS unit returning 57.6 mpg on the combined cycle and 113 g/km, and a 1.4-litre TSI 140 PS unit with Active Cylinder Technology, which can deactivate two of the cylinders, and achieves up to 58.9 mpg and 112 g/km.
The launch diesel engines are a 1.6-litre unit with 105 PS, which promises 74.3 mpg and 99 g/km, and a 2.0-litre 150 PS unit which returns 68.9 mpg and 106 g/km.
Further details on the new Golf will be revealed at the Paris Motor Show at the end of September; full live coverage of the show will be on MSN Cars.
The new VW Golf 7 2013 will have a UK launch date in January 2013. UK prices for the new VW Golf will be announced nearer the time; however, with the Euro relatively weak at the moment, and with this car being built in Eurozone Germany, expect them to be quite keen.
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