2012 Volkswagen Golf
1-10 of 21 reviews
Test drive review

Solid, fun car

by from Northwest Washington on December 2, 2012

I've had my 2012 Golf TDI 4 door for three months now and I'm satisfied. This was the priciest vehicle of the several I looked at so I have been super critical of the car so far and I have to say it w...
I've had my 2012 Golf TDI 4 door for three months now and I'm satisfied. This was the priciest vehicle of the several I looked at so I have been super critical of the car so far and I have to say it was worth the splurge. I love seeing it parked outside my house and I'm always making up errands so I have an excuse to drive it. Pros: -Great fuel economy, seems to average about 43mpg with mostly highway and freeway commuting. Errands in the city I get in the low thirties. -Fun to drive with lots of power and smooth shifting (I have the manual) -Very solid build - it's truly the most satisfying door close sound of any car I've driven - The vehicle has small details I appreciate, like the way the fog lamps come on when you take a sharp turn at night, and the rear wiper will do one quick swipe if you put the vehicle in reverse while the front wipers are on. The dome lights power up and down at just the right time. It's so great not to have to fumble on the ceiling for light. The wiper and cruise controls are well designed -Nice controls on the steering wheel for the computers and stereo, and the stereo and nav system buttons are large which I appreciate. -Seat heaters rock. I wish the rest of the climate control system was as easy to operate. -Stereo sounds great, bluetooth works like a charm and it is easy to switch between the different media inputs Cons: -The super high sided sticky bucket seats make it slightly difficult to enter and exit that car. -I have had exclusively manual transmissions since I started driving 26 years ago. but this was the most difficult clutch I've ever had to master. The first week I stalled out about every day. Once you figure it out it is fantastic, though! -Another beef that is maybe just me: I have not yet figured out a seat and steering wheel setting that is comfortable/my feet can reach the pedals/I can reach the wheel without having steering column hit my knee if I lift my right foot. This makes me wonder if I should have gone for the Tiguan. -Amazingly, there is not a way to display kph on this car. The analog speedometer (which is beautiful, btw) does not have any kph tickmarks. I figured I could just go onto the settings and switch the units on the digital display. I was able to see my fuel economy in kpg but the speed readout was still in miles. Why? Isn't this car made in Germany? So I guess I'll just have to do math when I'm in Canada. -The navigation system is pretty lame. For the last 3 years I've been using google maps navigation on my phone and going from that to this one in the Golf was like going from color tv back to black and white . It has not given any wrong directions but you can barely interact with the maps and the turn by turn directions don't give street names, or give you enough warning for your freeway exit for example. I wish I could use that nice big touchscreen for something more useful. -In a high end car it's shocking that there is no USB port! The honda fit and the ford focus I looked at both came with one. I have to use a converter in the "cigarette lighter" to charge my phone. I would have liked to see a USB in the console where that soon to be obsolete ipod dock resides. -The climate control knobs could be designed better. From the drivers seat it is difficult to see the tiny icons for defrost, feet, etc., especially the one whose view is blocked by the knob. Eventually I will memorize it but it's still annoying. -There must be a hundred lightbulbs in this thing - I worry about keeping up on that in the future. And what about all the doodads controlled by computers? I hope these systems last for the long haul! -Cup holders are slightly poorly placed, and there is only one deep enough to hold my coffee without the cup tipping over.
Comfort
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Value for the Money
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Reliability

Purchased a new car

Uses car for Commuting

Does recommend this car!!

6 out of 6 people found this review helpful. Did you?
Test drive review

Two cars in one

by from seattle on March 20, 2012

This review is for a Golf 4dr TDI. You would not know that from car.com very limited selection list. The Golf TDI is like two cars in one. High performance 236 ft lbs of torque, yet able to easily ge...
This review is for a Golf 4dr TDI. You would not know that from car.com very limited selection list. The Golf TDI is like two cars in one. High performance 236 ft lbs of torque, yet able to easily get into the 40 mpg range on the drive to work each day. There is absolutely no indication that this is diesel except for when you put fuel in it :-). Nice sport suspension, amazing pickup, and crisp handling, all in a very practical 4 door hatchback that has a timeless design. Sporty seats are comfortable and with heated seats, sunroof, nav, and bluetooth connectivity and integration, you swear you were driving an Audi :-). I love the 6 speed manual transmission but the DSG automatic tranny is awesome as well. There isn't a better economy car out there that is this fun to drive!
Comfort
Exterior Styling
Interior Design
Value for the Money
Performance
Reliability

Purchased a new car

Uses car for Transporting family

Does recommend this car!!

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful. Did you?
Test drive review

Impressed by the TDI Gas Mileage

by from Kansas City on May 30, 2012

We purchased a Golf 4D TDI (Diesel) a few months ago and have been very happy with the decision. I have a 50 mile mixed highway & city commute and I frequently get 43-45 MPG for the trip, well above t...
We purchased a Golf 4D TDI (Diesel) a few months ago and have been very happy with the decision. I have a 50 mile mixed highway & city commute and I frequently get 43-45 MPG for the trip, well above the listed EPA estimates. I had some initial concerns about owning a diesel car just based on fuel availability and other unknowns but I was surprised to learn how many stations now carry #2 diesel. With the TDI you will also be filling up less frequently anyway. If you never have owned a diesel and have concerns, rest assured it is well worth it. 10K mile oil changes & better gas mileage make the initial TDI investment well worth the money!
Comfort
Exterior Styling
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Value for the Money
Performance
Reliability

Purchased a new car

Uses car for Commuting

Does recommend this car!!

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful. Did you?
Test drive review

A Ball of Fuel Efficient FUN

by from Beacon, NY on July 20, 2012

I started to grow out of my Mazdaspeed3 that I owned for 5 years and absolutely loved. Even though I averaged 30 mpg with the Mazda, I wanted something that would get even better fuel economy since I ...
I started to grow out of my Mazdaspeed3 that I owned for 5 years and absolutely loved. Even though I averaged 30 mpg with the Mazda, I wanted something that would get even better fuel economy since I got a new job that required a long commute. The VW Golf TDI caught my eye when I read a review of the car and it became an option in my car search. Well, I ended up getting a great deal on one and took the plunge. I am so glad I did! The VW Golf TDI is a pure joy to drive and the smile on your face will get even broader when you see that you are averaging mid to high 40?s in mpg. I really couldn?t believe my eyes when my commute to work registered an average of 48 mpg and I had fun getting there to boot! The TDI engine has so much torque at low RPMs that driving it is absolutely effortless. The TDI also handles exceptionally well around bends and you would never know it is a diesel because you don?t hear the diesel sound you would expect and there is no diesel smell either. I always called my Mazdaspeed3 the best all around car but I really think the VW Golf TDI is an even better all around car. It truly is fantastic!
Comfort
Exterior Styling
Interior Design
Value for the Money
Performance
Reliability

Purchased a new car

Uses car for Commuting

Does recommend this car!!

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful. Did you?
Test drive review

Great value

by from Blue Springs, MO on January 10, 2012

Purchased a 2012 Golf but previously owned an 08 Rabbit. These models are often overlooked but provide a great balance of economy, reliability, and refinement. The interior finish is excellent and con...
Purchased a 2012 Golf but previously owned an 08 Rabbit. These models are often overlooked but provide a great balance of economy, reliability, and refinement. The interior finish is excellent and controls are well placed. My only minor gripe would be that the power steering takes away the road feedback completely which is a move away from the old days. In the long run however, I will probably appreciate this.
Comfort
Exterior Styling
Interior Design
Value for the Money
Performance
Reliability

Purchased a new car

Uses car for Just getting around

Does recommend this car!!

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful. Did you?
Test drive review

Golf TDI Manual

by from Dallas, TX on March 27, 2012

After leasing a Jetta Sportwagon TDI DSG for three years, I decided to replace that vehicle with a Golf TDI. My reasoning was simple: I wanted a manual (the Sportwagon was in limited availability when...
After leasing a Jetta Sportwagon TDI DSG for three years, I decided to replace that vehicle with a Golf TDI. My reasoning was simple: I wanted a manual (the Sportwagon was in limited availability when I purchased and manual's were impossible to find), I wanted a lower payment (fewer features), and I wanted to get rid of the sunroof (beautiful, but leaky and noisy after a while). The base model Golf TDI checked all the boxes for us. We purchased a Red base manual from out of state due to the difficulty in finding a local car matching the specs, and I drove the vehicle nearly 1000 miles the first day to get it home. I can't speak highly enough about the car. Fun to drive, great stereo, wonderful interior, and that fabulous economy. With the Jetta DSG wagon, I consistently got 30MPG with strict in town driving (which is 98% of what that car did). With the Golf, we're consistently getting 36MPG with the exact same driving. On the highway, the mileage is amazing (45 is easy to achieve). We purchased this vehicle instead of leasing. Overall, super happy with the car and looking forward many years of ownership.
Comfort
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Value for the Money
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Purchased a new car

Uses car for Just getting around

Does recommend this car!!

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful. Did you?
Test drive review

My New 2012

by from Newport Beach , CA on April 16, 2012

I have a new Golf (leased a Jetta for the past 20 yrs) It was a big change from the Jetta roomy wise, but I am getting use to it. The car handles well and is fast. The gas mileage is the same as the J...
I have a new Golf (leased a Jetta for the past 20 yrs) It was a big change from the Jetta roomy wise, but I am getting use to it. The car handles well and is fast. The gas mileage is the same as the Jetta. Nothing great. I was only able to afford the 2 door stock version, so I could not get the great stereo they have in the upgraded versions, but the sound speakers on this are pretty good. Good bluetooth and seat warmers. My one concern is the bucket seat manuver. It doesnt slide up easily and back only a foot or so. The pull lever is not very good and Im afraid this is going to break before my lease it up. A bit cramped in the back, but can live with it for 4 years. All and all its a nice little car. Good looks and fast. I'll keep you posted as the year goes by.
Comfort
Exterior Styling
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Value for the Money
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Purchased a new car

Uses car for Work

Does recommend this car!!

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful. Did you?
Test drive review

Great car

by from NJ on February 5, 2012

Great car fun to drive. Purchased new in 2011. The 5sp trans is great. Love the sunroof. the car is fast and handles great.
Great car fun to drive. Purchased new in 2011. The 5sp trans is great. Love the sunroof. the car is fast and handles great.
Comfort
Exterior Styling
Interior Design
Value for the Money
Performance
Reliability

Purchased a new car

Uses car for Having fun

Does recommend this car!!

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful. Did you?
Test drive review

Nice car, but not exciting

by from Woodridge, IL on February 16, 2013

I have the non-turbo engine in my 2012 Golf. The car is competent in driving around the city or suburban streets. I bought a manual trans since I like going through the gears myself. Shifting is smoot...
I have the non-turbo engine in my 2012 Golf. The car is competent in driving around the city or suburban streets. I bought a manual trans since I like going through the gears myself. Shifting is smooth, but you have to remember to let the revs run up when going to highway speed since the engine doesn't have much push at low revs. The interior on the lower cost model I bought is simple, but nice. I'm a big guy and have plenty of room in the front seat. Back seat space is tight, but in a pinch a couple of smaller folk would fit back there.
Comfort
Exterior Styling
Interior Design
Value for the Money
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Reliability

Purchased a new car

Uses car for Just getting around

Does recommend this car!!

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Test drive review

Love my TDI after 3 months

by from Berkeley, CA on February 5, 2012

Great car, comfortable, fuel efficient, powerful, fun to drive, solid, handles well, and great visibility.
Great car, comfortable, fuel efficient, powerful, fun to drive, solid, handles well, and great visibility.
Comfort
Exterior Styling
Interior Design
Value for the Money
Performance
Reliability

Purchased a new car

Uses car for Commuting

Does recommend this car!!

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful. Did you?
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