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Aussie VW Golf 7 launch line-up clues emerge

Teed up: Two petrol engines and a diesel look likely to form the core engine line-up of the all-new Volkswagen Golf when it arrives in the second quarter of this year.

Three engine variants approved for all-new VW Golf in Australia ahead of Q2 launch

Volkswagen logo11 Jan 2013

By HAITHAM RAZAGUI

VOLKSWAGEN has received Australian Design Rule (ADR) approval for three variants of its all-new, seventh-generation Golf small car, providing clues to what the local launch line-up will look like.

A 1.4-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine available with 90kW and 103kW power outputs and a choice of six-speed manual or seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmissions looks likely to open the range when it arrives in the second quarter of this year.

A 110kW 2.0-litre turbo-diesel will also be available, but only with a six-speed dual-clutch auto.

Information on trim levels is sparse, other than the fact that all three engine variants have been approved for wheel sizes ranging from 15 inches to 19 inches, with the latter exclusively available on cars fitted with electronic adaptive suspension damping.

Variations of the entry-level Trendline, mid-spec Comfortline and even premium Highine trim levels announced for Europe are expected to be offered here, with packages of optional extras offered as before.

Volkswagen Group Australia communications general manager Karl Gehling declined to confirm if the ADR documents viewed by GoAuto pointed to the intended Golf launch line-up or what other variants were in the queue for approval.

3 center imageFrom top: Volkswagen Australia's Anke Koeckler Volkswagen Amarok Tiguan.

Although the key volume-sellers have been covered, no direct replacement for the outgoing entry-level 77TSI variant, powered by a 77kW 1.2-litre turbo-petrol engine has yet been approved.

As reported, VW Group Australia managing director Anke Koeckler said the new-generation Golf range had room to grow beyond the existing 22 Golf hatches, wagons, manuals, automatics, and the three-door and five-door versions of the GTI.

However, Mr Gehling said we would have to “wait and see” when and what additional variants would be added to the Australian Golf range.

Given its popularity in Australia, the GTI hot hatch is a certainty, probably arriving within six months of the initial Golf launch if the current generation is anything to go by.

A diesel-powered GTD and replacement for the all-wheel-drive Golf R sports flagship – which has not yet been officially confirmed – will likely be introduced over the following 12 months, along with the load-lugging wagon body style.

Mr Gehling said variants such as the GTI, R and Cabrio had their own model life-cycles and would continue in production “for a while yet” until the factories are ready to begin production of the new-generation versions.

He confirmed that Australian-delivered Golfs will continue to be sourced from Wolfsburg in Germany.

The fuel-sipping new Golf BlueMotion – claimed to consume a hybrid-like 3.2 litres of diesel per 100 kilometres (current model: 3.8L/100km) – is also expected to make a comeback in the new Golf.

All three engines approved for Australia so far have standard fuel-saving BlueMotion technologies such as idle-stop and regenerative braking.

VW claims the 103kW petrol is the world’s first four-cylinder engine with a cylinder shut-down system – more often seen on large V8s such as the Holden Commodore SS and Chrysler 300 SRT-8 – which enables it to run on just two cylinders at middling revs and low load for fuel savings of up to 20 per cent.

Last year Golf sales dipped six per cent to 17,289 units in Australia, with market share in the small car segment slipping from 7.9 per cent to 7.2 per cent.

This did not stop VW from achieving 22.6 per cent growth in 2012, with a total of 54,835 units finding homes.

The Amarok one-tonne ute contributed a great deal to the 10,095 extra sales, becoming the German brand’s third best-seller with 6742 deliveries – placing it just behind the Tiguan compact SUV that sold 6871 units, up 13.2 per cent.

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