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9 VOTES

The new design is longer, wider and taller than the previous version resulting in more rear leg- and headroom.

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Pros

GT, GTI, and R32 offer excellent high-performance variants

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5 star Euro NCAP safety rating

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Wide range of petrol and diesel engines

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Superior handling

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Excellent build quality

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High residual/resale values

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Cons

Entry-level trim is very plain

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Expensive relative to other cars in its class

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1.4L petrol engines are underpowered

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Volkswagen used last year's Frankfurt International Motor Show to introduce its fifth-generation Golf and it looks to be yet another solid entry in this long line of popular hatchbacks. The new design is longer, wider and taller than the previous version resulting in more rear leg- and headroom as well as additional cargo capacity. Both two- and four-door versions are offered in three trim levels. U.S.-spec engine information has not yet been announced, but European versions use a mix of direct injection diesel and gas-powered units. A six-speed automatic is offered along with VW's Direct Shift Gearbox that blends elements of both automatic and manual transmissions. An all-new multilink suspension underpins the rear while struts are used up front. A unique electromechanical steering system is also new.

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