2018 Volkswagen Golf SE: Sporty Hatch with European Styling

Published: Monday, March 26, 2018 | 6:02 PM

2018vwgolf475Volkswagen’s perennial favorite the Golf, is a sporty hatchback with just the right amount of zippidy-do-dah to make everyday commutes a little less humdrum. With its turbocharged engine and nimble steering, the Golf is more than just your average passenger/cargo workhorse.

For 2018, the Golf is receives a refresh. The S, SE, and SEL trim returns and the Wolfsburg is discontinued. LED taillights and daytime running lights are now standard, as are rain-sensing windshield wipers. A bit of a fluff up was done to the front-end as well with some added chrome to the grille.

Available in S, SE, and SEL trims, the 2018 Golf is a five-passenger hatchback. This review will focus on the SE trim.

With features like LED taillights and daytime running lights, the Golf SE comes loaded with automatic headlights, a new chrome grille, rain-sensing wipers, 8-inch display screen, 16-inch aluminum-alloy wheels, leatherette seating, blind spot monitoring, keyless access, voice control, and a sunroof.

A 1.8-liter four cylinder turbocharged engine produces 170 horses and 199 pound-feet of torque. My model was paired with a 6-speed automatic transmission, but there is also a 5-speed manual for those that like to do the shifting themselves. Expect to get 24/city, 33/highway, and 28/combined mpg.

2018vwgolfintThe interior is a nice place to be with plenty of soft-touch materials. The location of the many switches and knobs is intuitively laid out and the cabin is roomy, although fitting three grown adults in the back seat will be tight. Cargo will be plenty comfortable however, with plenty of room in the trunk.

The Golf SE’s 8-inch touchscreen is easy to use with bright graphics and logical menus. There is no built in navigation system offered but with cell phones these days it’s really not a necessity.

The cabin of the Golf is quiet for maximum musical or conversational enjoyment and the ride is smooth. Steering is tight, making cornering steady. Acceleration is quick due to the turbocharged engine, so you won’t feel like you are playing catch up when entering traffic.

Wishing you had a hatchback with some curb appeal? Give the 2018 Volkswagen Golf SE a test drive.