2020 Volkswagen Golf Estate launched with new Alltrack version

The new VW Golf Estate will be even more practical and advanced than the current car

  • Golf Estate officially revealed
  • Petrol automatic models all get mild-hybrid technology
  • Alltrack version has four-wheel drive

The wraps have come off the new Volkswagen Golf Estate before it goes on sale later this year. It’ll have a range of efficient powertrains and all the latest technology you’ll find in the hatchback, including Car2X software and a digital instrument cluster as standard.

It’s likely that the new Golf Estate will start from around £24,500 and most of the trim levels will be carried over. There’s also a Volkswagen Golf Alltrack version that’s exclusive to the estate, which has four-wheel drive and a more rugged feel. As before, the Golf Estate will rival the Skoda Octavia Estate, Kia Ceed Sportswagon and Ford Focus Estate.

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With SUV sales booming, it’ll also be an indirect competitor to the Skoda Karoq, Peugeot 3008 and Hyundai Tucson.

Styling

There are few surprises in terms of styling; everything in front of the windscreen is carried over from the Golf hatchback, while a sloping roofline and a steeply raked rear windscreen give a sportier look than before. There’s a longer rear overhang and different rear lights to the hatchback, but they look similar to the last Golf Estate. The rear end shape looks very similar to the latest Octavia estate.

The red model in these images is an R-Line model, with a sportier body kit and gloss black trim pieces. It’s thought Life and Style trims will get fins in the lower grille area, as they do on the hatchback.

2020 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack

The Volkswagen Golf Alltrack estate has been revealed alongside the standard range. It’s a standalone model that offers higher ground clearance, SUV-like body cladding and exclusive interior features. ‘4MOTION’ four-wheel drive comes as standard, and the raised ride height will mean the Alltrack will be able to tackle rough trails with less risk of grounding itself.

The outgoing model was predominantly sold with a 2.0-litre diesel engine but we expect VW to offer at least one petrol option this time. It’s likely to be sold with an automatic gearbox as standard, and Volkswagen has confirmed that the Alltrack will be able to tow up 2,000kg (depending on the engine).

The Alltrack will rival the Skoda Octavia Scout, while the Ford Focus Active estate and Toyota Corolla Trek look similar but are front-wheel drive only. We expect the Alltrack to sit at the top of the range, with a price to match. A cheaper front-wheel drive model that retains the rugged styling - like the Focus Active - seems unlikely.

Interior and technology

If you’re familiar with the outgoing Golf Estate, the new car could feel completely different inside. Shared with the hatchback, the estate will feature two big screens as standard - one for the infotainment and one in front of the driver that replaces analogue dials. Nearly all buttons are replaced by touch-sensitive panels with haptic feedback (they’ll buzz a little when you press them).

The Mk8 Volkswagen Golf Estate will be online all the time, and will feature live traffic updates and VW’s Car2X software. This communicates with other cars equipped with the system and local infrastructure to warn you about local hazards like traffic jams and roadworks. Amazon Alexa, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity will all be available.

If there are features you decide you’d like once you’ve bought the car, it will be possible to add some retrospectively. Adaptive cruise control, auto high-beam assist, navigation (if not fitted as standard) and wireless smartphone mirroring can all be added to the car. We presume this can be done remotely; the extra features may be offered on a subscription basis.

Specifications

The Golf Estate will match the Golf’s specifications with trim levels called Life, Style and R-Line. Life is the entry-point to the range but will still offer plenty of equipment including LED headlights, alloy wheels, sat nav, wireless phone charging, automatic air conditioning, adaptive cruise control and front and rear parking sensors.

Style gets fins in the grille and extra chrome, plus 30-colour ambient lighting, three-zone air conditioning and auto high-beam assist. R-Line brings sportier styling and lowered suspension, privacy glass and a heated steering wheel.

Besides these and the Alltrack, we’re expecting an estate version of the hot Golf R with 316bhp. A GTD estate has previously been available, but a GTI estate is highly unlikely.

Practicality

The new Golf Estate is 349mm longer than the car it replaces and the wheelbase (the distance between front and rear wheels) is up by 66mm. Boot size has increased by six litres to 611 litres, and flipping the rear seats down means there are 1,642 litres to fill (22 more than before). Hopefully the estate will offer a standard space-saver spare wheel like the hatchback does, too, while four-wheel drive models shouldn’t offer any less boot space than two-wheel drive versions.

Engines and performance

You’ll be able to choose most of the same engines as you can with the hatchback, including a 1.5-litre petrol engine with 128 or 148bhp and a 2.0-litre diesel with 113 or 148bhp. There’ll be mild-hybrid technology on all petrol engines with automatic gearboxes, while Volkswagen’s desire to reduce its total emissions output might mean there’s a plug-in hybrid Golf Estate on the horizon for the first time. Rivals including the Ceed Sportswagon and the Renault Megane Sport Tourer have recently gained plug-in powertrains.

Read our Volkswagen Golf review, or see where the last Golf Estate features on our list of the best used estate cars.

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