Volkswagen reveals a wide range of technological enhancements which keep its small, family class, range competitive.
What is a VW Golf?
The Volkswagen Golf has received a mid-life facelift that adds semi-autonomous driving, a more digitalised cabin and revised styling for 2017. The Golf is a small, family class, hatchback/estate range and the manufacturer's most “successful” vehicle ever, Volkswagen claimed. Deliveries likely start in April.
The 2017 Golf has various semi-autonomous features. Traffic Jam Assist enables it to steer, accelerate and brake at up to 37mph (automatic transmission only). Drivers, however, must keep their hands on the wheel and “intervene” if required, Volkswagen claimed.
Traffic Jam Assist is a combination of other semi-autonomous systems. Lane Assist steers whereas Automatic Distance Control regulates the throttle/brake to maintain distance from any hazards.
Volkswagen Golf Front Assist and City Emergency Braking scans for hazards – including now pedestrians – then warns the motorist to respond if a collision is likely. If there is no reaction, it brakes automatically to avoid a collision or mitigate its severity.
Park Assist 3 steers into perpendicular parking bays forward and now – for the first time in a Golf – backward. The Motorist simply controls the throttle, transmission and brakes. The system also steers into, and out of, bays that are parallel to the carriageway.
The 12.3-inch, 1,440 x 540 pixel, Active Info Display replaces the traditional instrument cluster with a digital comparative. Its purpose is to change what information is most visible based on personal preference. Selectable modes are: Classic, Consumption & Range, Efficiency, Performance & Driver Assistance plus Navigation.
Navigation Mode, for example, moves the speedometer and rev-counter to each side to create space for a larger map. Classic, in contrast, has a more traditional feel. Active Info Display also shows telephone contact images and CD covers plus - in certain trims – specific contrast colouring. The GTI gets red, for example.
Discover Pro is the top of the range infotainment system. It incorporates a 9.2-inch, 1,280 by 640 pixel, screen and makes conventional buttons “a thing of the past”, the manufacturer suggested. Operation comes via the touchscreen itself, the capacitive panel to its side, voice command and new gesture control.
Gesture control enables the user to operate functions by, in essence, waving at the screen. Highlights include: scroll menu, change radio station, examine playlist and browse pictures. A “light flare” reveals what functions operate in this manner and confirmation that a swipe is successful comes via the sound effect.
The Golf has a range of further enhancements for 2017. Highlights include:
- new 1.5-litre TSI Evo 150PS turbocharged petrol engine;
- new 7-speed automatic, dual-clutch, DSG transmission;
- new front/rear bumpers and wings;
- new interior trims and fabrics;
- LED tail lights as standard;
- wider range of online services such as Google Street View;
- each key retains personal preferences such as climate control and ambient lighting settings.