• Aug 24th 2009 at 9:57AM
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2010 Volkswagen Golf - Click above for high-res image gallery

For 2010, Volkswagen is again discarding the Rabbit badge in favor of the Golf name used in the rest of the world's markets, and they will begin arriving in the U.S. in the coming weeks, beginning with the GTI. The standard Golf will again be available with diesel power, the same 2.0-liter turbodiesel four-cylinder engine that arrived last year in the Jetta TDI. Although they aren't linked to from the main VW site, new GTI and Golf websites are now live and include TDI information, specs and pricing.

The base 2-door, 2.5-liter gas-powered Golf starts at $17,490 and the 4-door at $19,190. Like the Jetta, the TDI models come with a higher level of equipment and therefore start at $21,990 and $22,590 with a 6-speed manual gearbox. The new GTI, meanwhile, starts at $23,290.

What's interesting are the fuel economy numbers for the TDI. The Volkswagen website lists both the manual and DSG versions of the new Golf TDI as 29 mpg city and 40 mpg highway. However, a quick check of the EPA's FuelEconomy.gov site shows that the Golf TDI rates even better at 30 mpg city and 42 highway. Similarly, the EPA also lists the 2010 Jetta TDI with DSG at the same level of improvement over the 2009 model's 29/40. Assuming the EPA numbers are correct, VW must have done some recalibration work on the DSG model. Thanks to Jay for the tip!

[Source: Volkswagen]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 6 Years Ago
      I test drove the Jetta TDI "clean" Diesel when it came out last year...i must say...that 236 ft.lbs of torque is LOADS of FUN!!! i could care less that Diesel fuel cost more...Americans are just to damn scared of change...in the typical american mind a diesel = a Ford F-350 Powerstroke or Uncle John's 1983 Mercedes 300D that you can hear and smell from a mile away. Not counting the smoke it produces. Come on guys!! Diesels are not bad...sure we may run out of oil soon and need an alternative...but tell me...what gas (not hybrid) powered car gets a solid 51 mpg @ 70 miles an hour...and if you drive more carefully, gets EVEN more mpg's. What's not to love? my dad bought a E320 CDI last year...and it at times gets better gas mileage than his old '04 Accord I-4 did. i love his car and plan to get a Jetta or Golf TDI.
      • 6 Years Ago
      If you go to www.fueleconomy.gov and look up the 2009 Jetta TDi you will see that the User average Fuel Economy is Higher than the EPA HWY rating. According to an epa press release in 2008 They admited their system unfairly penalizes (diesels),TDI's by up to 18% and often overrates Gasoline and hybrids by up to 20%. Of course anyone could hypermile any car.
        • 6 Years Ago
        I can't find anything on EPA saying diesels are underrated by 18%:

        What's in the test cycle that causes diesels to be underrated?

        At fueleconomy.gov you can see higher ratings also for other models:

        - Honda Insight: 41 mpg --> 52 mpg
        - Toyota Corolla: 30 mpg --> 34 mpg
        - Honda Fit: 29 mpg --> 35 mpg

        Also notice there aren't always many ratings in there so I think Edmunds tests is more reliable for a comparison.
      • 6 Years Ago
      As stated in the recent review of the Ford Fusion hybrid - Hybrid's do not perform as efficiently in cold weather climates, so the TDI would actually be much more comparable, if not much better than hybrids, in those environments.

      Also, for those that drive mostly on highways, TDI engines could be more efficient as well. Personally, living with both of those factors in the Northeast, I would easily purchase a TDI over a hybrid and get much more benefit from it.
      • 6 Years Ago
      EPA admits themselves to underrate TDI engines by up to 18% tack on 18 % to the 40 mpg and you get 47.2 mpg. Add a little hyper mileage in there and give the TDI engine a chance to break in, because we all understand tdi's get better mileage with break in. and your up over 50 MPG. TDI's will always exceed EPA unlike alot of gas and hybrid models.
        • 6 Years Ago
        When did EPA admit they underrated diesel models by 18%?

        Most are able to get +15-20% on highway driving with almost any car. EPA created the new testing standard because people complained it was overrated.

        Either way this is from Edmunds comparison test:

        The Final Cost
        The champ: 2010 Toyota Prius used $45.32 worth of regular gasoline at 47.6 mpg
        2nd Place: 2010 Honda Insight used $51.16 worth of regular gasoline at 42.3 mpg
        3rd Place: 2009 Volkswagen Jetta TDI used $55.22 worth of diesel at 38.1 mpg
        4th Place: 2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid used $57.85 worth of regular gasoline at 37.3 mpg
        5th Place: 2009 Mini Cooper used $67.09 worth of premium gasoline at 34.5 mpg

        Under cold conditions hybrids can perform less well but Toyota/Lexus improved on that (see technical articles on new Lexus RX hybrid).
      • 6 Years Ago
      In response to your question regarding when did EPA admit they under rated diesel models.
      The answer is right here http://www.epa.gov/fueleconomy/420r06017.pdf on page 16. Now because it's questionable weather or not they took the new revised standards into effect, the 18% could be higher.

      Happy reading.
        • 6 Years Ago
        That Isn't the right article, there was another one from epa with them actually admitting their testing was somewhat unfair to diesels. Unfortunately i can't find it right now, I did have it book marked when I do find it I'll post it.
        • 6 Years Ago
        My calculation of EPA vs consumer reports highway numbers show that EPA underrating of higway MPG is nearly identical for the Jetta TDI and Honda Civic 1.8 AT.

        47/40 = ~18% (TDI) EPA under-rated vs CR.
        43/36 = ~19% (Civic AT 1.8) EPA under-rated vs CR.

        I am willing to go with nearly any reasonably scientific numbers that run the same test for everyone, measure fuel accurately etc... which then serves as a reasonable basis for comparison.

        But when it comes to various diehard fans, no standard seems to work for them except completely biased anecdotal numbers or other fans. These kinds of numbers are completely useless for comparison.

        Right now EPA and Consumer Reports are just about the only sources of reasonably comparable testing, that allows you to compare one cars results to another. I prefer CR, but EPA is still better than what fans report.
        • 6 Years Ago
        You left out 3 things:
        - Numbers came from users submitted FE ratings and they didn't know the city/highway mix and had less diesels to compare to
        - Other categories also beat the EPA rating 6-11%
        - Numbers are before revised EPA test which caused Hybrids biggest drop in MPG ratings (2006 report)

        EPA didn't admit anything. They just looked at user data and compared them.
        We already looked at more current user data above so that would be same analysis.
        You can see it varies. The Insight clearly beat the MPG even more than the Jetta (the Prius not so much but still has highest MPG).

        It's not just about hybrid vs diesel, if you pay > $22K for a small hatchback but still don't quite get the hybrid fuel economy, why not buy base model or cheaper non-hybrid model? I still think it's way overpriced.

        There are always complains about hybrid premiums (even for $20K Insight) but if it comes to diesel premiums or FE no one seems to complain for some reason even though the FE improvement isn't quite as big.

        On highway driving I was able to get 40+ mpg with an Acura TSX at 60mph. I'm sure the regular 15K Civic should be able to get that. At 70mph of course it will drop little bit.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Consumer reports Rated the Rabbit (GOLF) as one of the overall most cost effective vehicles to drive. That was with the 2.5 liter gas engine. Now with this TDI, the GOLF can finally claim the top spot.

      SnowDog, initial prices for the TDI in Canada are rumored to start at 22,000.
        • 6 Years Ago
        From what I read, on the Golf you can only get TDI on a 4 door Comfortline, which puts you at $23K before you even add the TDI, so I figure $25K.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Anyone find Canadian Prices. Going by this and some info I read elsewhere. I suspect the TDI golf will be starting around $25K in Canada. Which drops it off my list.
      • 6 Years Ago
      How could the Golf TDI be the top cost efficient vehicle? A Corolla for instance costs 6-7K less with only 10% less FE:

      Corolla combined: 30mpg
      Jetta diesel combined: 34mpg

      But looking at VW site I do see now you get a few more options with the diesel so perhaps difference is only 3K. But none of the options are really that expensive on most other cars like Insight/Prius (and if not already included in base).

      The Mazda article has a typo since they say 43mpg (US) but then they say it's 15% more efficient than previous model. If you do add up 15% you end up with 38mpg which is still pretty close to the Golf diesel. The city rating will definitely go up with their start/stop system.
        • 6 Years Ago
        How could the Golf TDI be the top cost efficient vehicle? A Corolla for instance costs 6-7K less with only 10% less FE

        Because when you take into account the cost of a vehicle you need to include all costs, including initial price, Depreciation, fuel economy, maintenance, and insurance. When you take into account how CLOSE the race was with the GASOLINE engine and then consider the diesel equipped vehicles retain close to 40% better Resale value than their gasoline counterparts, the extra 2-3000 you spend to spend to purchase the vehicle is more than recouped. Plus add the extra "real world" fuel economy, and the fact that diesel is up to 20% cheaper than gasoline ( at the moment) and you have a recipe for a very economical premium vehicle.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I'm just saying if you're willing to spend that much extra for the diesel version to get better FE (with 30 less HP than cheaper base) then I argue you may as well buy a (larger) more fuel-efficient hybrid or a non-diesel small car . Economically it doesn't make sense (instead you love the design perhaps or some other reason).

      The Golf TDI *starts* at $21,900 and not sure that will give you a 4 door with automatic. A lot of money for a very small compact (smaller than almost all hybrids).

      The Jetta Wagon TDI makes more sense to me. At least it has a lot more space to offer and pricing is almost same. But it isn't that cheap either.
        • 6 Years Ago
        "... if I am forced to take all the other options as the only way to get a TDI, it raises the entry point by $4500."

        Fair enough. But by the same reasoning, for me the price premium of the Hybrid Synergy Drive is over $6000 - because I'd be forced to accept a larger 5-door body, rather than the Yaris/Fit sized body which is perfectly adequate for me.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Again, the diesel engine is not a $4500 extra. If you look at the Jetta specs, the TDI is better equipped than the SE trim level, so it's less than $2400 premium for the diesel engine. And while it has less horsepower, it has a lot more torque, so it's overly simplistic to say you're giving up power and money just for better fuel efficiency.

        Also, not everyone thinks a larger size is an advantage. I myself chose a Honda Fit over a Prius because I felt the Prius was larger than I needed.
        • 6 Years Ago
        It makes little difference to me how much of that $4500 is TDI and how much is other options, if I am forced to take all the other options as the only way to get a TDI, it raises the entry point by $4500.

      • 6 Years Ago
      You guys crack me up with your back and forth about Hybrid v. Diesel. Just choose what you like. You can always find reasons to back up your decision. I can think of a myriad of reasons to buy one or the other (over traditional gasoline only engines as well).

      Personally all things being equal - and for the most part they are (yes Hybrid owners they are if you take into consideration the enviornmental issues with batteries), I believe I would want a car that less people own simply because it bores me to see that same vehicle everywhere.

      But that's just me.
        • 6 Years Ago
        And there are great reasons to buy simple gas cars with no big batteries and no turbos and no exotic exhaust scrubber, that still get up to 40mpg on the highway at much less cost.

        I would love them to put better gearing, more aerodynamics, energy efficient tires on a normal gas car and get near Hybrid and Diesel numbers for much less cost with much less future maintenance worry.
        • 6 Years Ago
        By bounty do you mean when you have to spend $3,000 to replace the Hybrid Battery after 100,000 miles?

        Look the fact is that the current hybrid batteries as well as the newer Lithium Ion batteries, though lower in toxicity than traditional lead, still are toxic.

        My point being that the Hybrid vs Deisel debate seems kinda pointless because there are great reasons to buy both. Someone who owns a deisel can switch to biodeisel and move past a hybrid owner on the carbon footprint scale. Hybrid owners get better mpg.

        I think it's just great that we now have real choices and hopefully they'll get even better.
        • 6 Years Ago
        (yes Hybrid owners they are if you take into consideration the enviornmental issues with batteries)

        Oh, right, only hybrid cars use NiMH batteries?

        As a matter of fact, hybrids use of batteries is BETTER than other usage because there is a bounty on the batteries, which ensure that the batteries will NOT go into landfills, and that it is properly recycled.

        Lead acid batteries are not very good for the environment either, except over 97% of all lead acid batteries are recycled, thanks to the active recycling program.
      • 6 Years Ago
      actually if we really want to get down to it the best solution is a bicycle. Even a green hybrid causes pollution in it's Production. Or an EV when it's Taking energy from the plug that was generated by one of thousands of Coal plants. I think everyone should just buy what fits their needs the best and stop bashing the other. :-) For me that's diesel, excuse me while I calculate my latest 60+ MPG tank.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Why does it get such (in my opinion) lame mileage. This thing should be more like 35/48.

      It's like the only diesels they sell over here offer only minor improvements in economy, thereby continuing the "why buy diesel" debate that the American Car Industry seems to be perpetuating.

        • 6 Years Ago
        No confusion here. I subscribe to CR online and have access to the full database. I just checked again, no mistake on my part. CR reports Civic (non hybrid) as getting 43mpg highway.

        CR highway test is pretty close to a straight highway run, which is the kind of thing Diesel heads are always reporting and indeed on this test the Jetta scores 47 MPG which is fantastic, but the Civic gets 43mpg which is also quite fantastic.

        To Be clear:
        The AT Civic EX 4 door with the 1.8 L engine, got 43 MPG highway. You are probably remembering the combined number.

        If you can't get 43mpg in the Civic, then you likely won't get 47MPG in the TDI. This is not meant to be a typical number, but more like an upper limit, straight highway run at moderate speed.

        And as far as EPA under-rating. Again no difference with normal gas cars.

        47/40 = ~18% (TDI) EPA under-rated vs CR.
        43/36 = ~19% (Civic AT 1.8) EPA under-rated vs CR.

        The truth is more is being squeezed out of gas engines these days, and the new TDI is bigger and more powerful and a slight step back on fuel economy. The delta just isn't that large anymore.
        • 6 Years Ago
        TDIs usually exceed their EPA numbers. For example, a co-worker saw 46 mpg in her manual Jetta TDI during a recent road trip.
        • 6 Years Ago
        I think Snowdog is confused. I own a current model Civic and 43mpg is not realistic. I did a lot of research and my memory of CR's mileage was in the low 30s which is realistic. That 43 may be for the Civic Hybrid. Road and Track got 32 for the Civic and 42 for the Hybrid version. My best mileage on a two lane road in the desert was 36 mpg at a steady 70 mph. Just what the EPA says. Mileage in the city has never been as good as the EPA figures.
        • 6 Years Ago
        "TDIs usually exceed their EPA numbers"

        So do gas cars on the highway, where TDI fans like to quote:

        At Consumer Reports which does more real world type testing:

        Jetta TDI got: 47mpg highway.
        Honda Civic got: 43mpg highway.

        You can get a cheaper, more reliable civic and still get over 40 mpg highway. In fact that means the Civic gas engine is just as efficient (if not more efficient) than the TDI on the highway, because the diesel fuel has 15% more energy, but it isn't getting 15% more mpg.
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