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Volkswagen Golf GTD hatchback (2013-2019) - Interior & comfort

With three driving modes, the Volkswagen Golf GTD has a setting for every eventuality

Carbuyer Rating

3.7 out of 5

Owners Rating
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Interior & comfort Rating

4.0 out of 5

The beauty of the Volkswagen Golf GTD is how easy it is to live with on a daily basis. Just like any other Golf, the top-of-the-range diesel model is comfortable on all but the roughest surfaces, and if you specify the optional adaptive dampers, you can tune the suspension to feel softer or sportier using a button on the dashboard.

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The powerful 182bhp engine feels smooth and quiet at motorway speeds. It’s a little clattery when waiting at traffic lights, but the standard stop-start system (which cuts the engine when the car is stopped) makes this much easier to live with. Plus, wind and road noise are kept to a minimum and the seats are comfortable, making the GTD a pleasure to drive on both long and short journeys.

Volkswagen Golf GTD dashboard

The first thing a GTD driver will notice is the lack of traditional analogue instruments. These have been banished in favour of a 12.3-inch Active Info Display, which can be set to show various combinations of information, including a full-colour 3D navigation map. It’s easy to use and great to look at, too, injecting a high-tech feel to the dashboard.

Elsewhere, everything is laid out logically, with switches easy to reach and every surface within reach is made from tactile, high-quality materials. There are no squeaks or rattles from the dashboard when on the road, and everything fits together without gaps.

Equipment

GTDs are distinguished by 18-inch alloy wheels and a special GTD styling pack, as well as twin exhaust pipes. Bright LED headlamps are fitted, as are front and rear parking sensors. Inside, there’s plenty of chrome detailing and some Golf GTI-style tartan seats, but leather upholstery will cost you quite a bit more. Climate control, automatic lights, automatic windscreen wipers and electric folding door mirrors are also standard.

A ‘Discover’ infotainment system looks after sat nav, DAB radio and Bluetooth phone connectivity duties, via an eight-inch touchscreen. It also allows access to ‘Car-Net’ – a real-time app that can provide information on nearby car parks and fuel prices. Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and MirrorLink compatibility are all included.

In our opinion, upgrading to the 9.2-inch ‘Discover Pro’ system is a retrograde step – the intuitive buttons and scroll wheel of the Discover system are dropped in favour of gesture recognition, which we found rather more complicated to use.

Choosing the fuel-saving GTD BlueLine version replaces the standard alloy wheels with 17-inch items to improve efficiency. 

Options

Buyers should be careful when ticking items on the options list. Selecting a few choice extras will send the list price soaring – leather seats cost around £1,750, for example. The panoramic sunroof isn’t cheap either, while adding larger 19-inch alloy wheels will cost you almost £1,000.

A Dynaudio stereo is available for around £550, improving sound with a 10-channel digital amplifier and more powerful 400w output.

Metallic paint and pearl-effect paint are available at a cost of around £550.

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Richard is a former editor of Carbuyer, as well as sister site DrivingElectric.com, and he's now Deputy Editor at Auto Express. Having spent a decade working in the automotive industry, he understands exactly what makes new car buyers tick.

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