2018 Volkswagen Golf SportWagen consumer reviews

$21,685–$25,035 MSRP range
side view of 2018 Golf SportWagen Volkswagen
87% of drivers recommend this car
Rating breakdown (out of 5):
  • Comfort 4.6
  • Interior design 4.5
  • Performance 4.6
  • Value for the money 4.7
  • Exterior styling 4.4
  • Reliability 4.6
Explore the 2018 Volkswagen Golf SportWagen
Shop the 2018 Volkswagen Golf SportWagen

The superior option

I was looking for a car that could replace a mid-size sedan and a compact SUV. The Sportwagen largely fit the bill. I would have preferred a M-B E Class wagon. But this purchase is the value alternative. There are pros and cons to any ownership experience. I'll list the cons. Do not take the car home if it is fitted with Hankook's KInergy GT tires. The Hankooks proved to be NOISY, hard riding and provide only nominal grip in the wet. That said, the sound insulation could be improved somewhat in the Sportwagen. The engine is a little more audible when accelerating than some drivers might prefer. At cruise there is zero engine noise. With proper tires, the level of road noise is very acceptable. Wind noise is present at higher speeds but it is not intrusive. Being a compact, the center armrest is possibly more compact than it needs to be. The ride quality might be firm to some people. But it has a 1000 pound payload rating - it is more heavily sprung than any sedan. That's it. The Sportwagen is a fine choice. The pros: It is quick given the engine displacement. Premium fuel gives the engine output a noticeable boost - I have never owned a car that was designed for regular where using higher octane fuel made a difference. Handling is superb. Especially on proper tires. Tracking is vector-like. Brakes are very strong. Interior fit and finish is superb using better materials than most in the class. Nobody in the non-luxury class does seat design better than VW. The standard infotainment system operates and sounds better than others in the class and better than many in the luxury class. Fuel economy, for me, has exceeded all the EPA estimates by a significant percentage (15%). This is not a car for large people. It is very comfortable for the average demographic. The extra tall people will still find acceptable front leg room. The rear space will be impacted though. The heavier proportioned among us should spend some time with the car before making the decision. The seats are accommodating but they are not expansive. So far as cargo space...the over all cubes equal my compact SUV. The space is narrower but longer. The Sportwagen, for most items, is easier to load due to the much lower floor height.


Audi Like

Car is very quiet, smooth, comfortable and handles like a go cart. Build quality is Audi like at half the price or less. Sportwagon is very practical with storage that rivals small and mid sized suv's. Manual transmission is smooth operating, and is returning better than 36mpg. Its hard to match this vehicle build quality ,ride, comfort, handling, AWD, great sound system, and capacity for very low 20k.


Lots of De-contenting for 2018

Test drove an '18 TSI S, 5-speed manual transmission. Love the new front end & rear end redesign for 2018. Really modernizes look of the car. Also, VW now offering 6 year warranty, presumably to rebuild market share after the bad publicity from the diesel matter. Car drove well and cloth seat was remarkably comfortable, much better than the rubbery "leatherette" in the All-Track (which I also test drove a few months ago). Compared with All-Track, smaller wheels with taller sidewall also improves ride quality over our brutal pot-holed New England roads. However, disappointed by some of the de-contenting done to pay for the new warranty and exterior changes. If you want the base model, to get the great 5 speed manual trans, more comfortable cloth seats & to avoid leaking sunroof problems, there is now no satellite radio; no auxiliary-in port; no CD player (not even in glove box); and no under-seat storage drawer. These are just the things I noticed on a 20 minute test drive. There may be other things that were deleted that had been standard on all 2017 models. Generation X and older drivers presumably still want these options. Without the auxiliary-in port, you can't even jury-rig after-market satellite radio receiver, except via the FM receiver (which Sirius does not recommend). Yes, there is a USB port & yes, we have an I-pod, but it is cumbersome to scan through 2,500 songs to find the one you want while driving. You are forced to a Passat if you want a CD player in the center console (and no manual trans option with Passat). Drove manual transmission Saabs for over 15 years before switching to a few different Volvo wagons (auto trans). With Saab out of business and current Volvo models offering solely the equivalent of an I-Pad touch screen (zero buttons) for audio, climate & other controls, I thought let's go back to more of a purist's car. We don't care about checking Facebook or Twitter while driving. But not sure we will go forward with VW. Without CD player or satellite radio, middle-aged & older drivers are basically left solely with AM/FM and an I-pod. I guess everything old is new again, as my 4-speed, 1972 VW Karmann Ghia convertible had solely AM/FM radio.