The evolution of VW Golf - 1974 to present

The evolution of VW Golf - 1974 to present

KUALA LUMPUR: Volkswagen came into existence back in the year 1937. Since then it has produced and sold millions of vehicles worldwide. Over the years, it became highly popular in many countries. Its products have been a sign of trust, reliability, and longevity. Out of the umpteen car models that have been launched in the market under the VW badge, there is one which became the company’s best-selling model ever - the Volkswagen Golf.

Volkswagen Golf

VW Golf was first launched in 1974. Today, it is in its seventh generation. It has lived through the history and has undergone many changes that have converted it into what we are today familiar with. The first model of the Golf, named as the Mk1, was a front-wheel-drive, front-engined compact hatchback that was primarily built to replace the ever-young Volkswagen Beetle. The Mk1 was a very basic 3-door car. It had a simple boxy design with round headlamps. Who knew that these will become a legend in the future. Later in 1976, Volkswagen introduced a GTI variant of the Golf. This model had fuel-injection and was powered by a 1.6-litre engine that allowed the car to reach a top speed of 180 kmph.

While the Mk1 was still winning hearts, Volkswagen was working tirelessly on an updated Golf which was launched in 1983. This model had a longer wheelbase and slightly increased exterior and interior dimensions. The silhouette of the new model remained the same. Just like with the Mk1, VW soon introduced a GTI version of the Mk2. Under the hood of the Mk2 was a 1.8-liter engine with 16 valves. This resulted in a boost in power, and a top speed of the car. The Mk2 was capable to reach 220 kmph with the throttle pinned down on the floor. With such high speeds, it was getting a bit challenging to handle the car. So in 1985, VW brought the 4WD model of the Golf called the Golf Syncro.

It took Volkswagen almost 8 years to develop the third generation (Mk3) Golf. This model got some revised looks. The round headlamps gave way to bigger rectangular-ish ones. There were minor changes to the tail lights as well. The boxy design remained the same but the edges and corners were chamfered a little for a refreshed appearance. The biggest change in the Mk3 was the engine. VW replaced the old engine with its first Turbocharged Direct Injection (TDI) diesel system. The other engine option available with the Mk3 was a narrow-angle 2.8-litre VR6 unit. By this time, Volkswagen started making different versions of the Golf like the Estate, Cabriolet, etc.

Volkswagen Golf entered its fourth-generation in 1997. It was selling in very good numbers, and VW was satisfied with that. It did not want to disturb the overall styling of the Golf, so the fourth-generation model saw minor aesthetics changes. During the lifespan of this generation of Golf, VW brought high-performance models like the 3.2-litre VR6-engined four-wheel-drive Golf R32 introduced in 2002, its predecessor, the 2.8-litre VR6-engined Golf V6 4Motion, as well as the famous 1.8T (turbo) 4-cylinder used in various Volkswagen Group models.

VW Golf Sideview

The Golf was in its fifth-generation when it lost all its handsome looks. VW decided to bring in some new styling by implementing newly designed headlights and tail lights. This was the ugliest Golf that Volkswagen ever produced. Nothing on the outside was attractive or youthful enough to get people excited about it. However, under the hood things were really picking up the pace. The Mk5 was powered by a 2.5-liter 5-cylinder engine that produced 150 hp. It was later updated to churn out 170 horses. VW also brought in the GTI version of the Golf that had the 2.0-liter turbocharged TFSI engine with 197 hp on tap. The later modes of the Mk5 introduced the 1.4-litre TSI turbocharged petrol engine with front-wheel drive.

Volkswagen realized that it made a mistake with the styling of the previous generation Golf. And so it tried to rectify that in the sixth-generation by giving the job to Walter de'Silva - VW’s Chief Designer. Yes, this model was way better than its predecessor, but the magic was still absent. VW said that the new design was more aerodynamic in nature and thus helps in giving better fuel efficiency and performance. The Mk6 Golf also received both 5-speed and 6-speed manual transmission, and 6-speed or 7-speed Direct-Shift Gearbox (DSG). We also got the 2.5-litre inline 5-cylinder engine which produces 170 hp and 240 Nm. There was another 2.0-liter inline 4-cylinder diesel engine with 130 hp and 320 Nm. For the GTI model, VW provided a 211 hp TSI engine that really made driving around a fun task.

The present and the seventh-generation of Volkswagen Golf was introduced in 2012. VW implemented all its knowledge that it gained over the years, and gave its best shot to give the Golf a much-needed push. The latest Golf is based on the new MQB platform which is used in other VW vehicles, like the third-generation Audi A3, SEAT Leon, and Skoda Octavia. Volkswagen decided to go for this platform because this would make the Golf a good 100 kg lighter, depending on the engine choice.

Volkswagen Golf Black

This Golf comes with a 2.0-litre 4-cylinder turbocharged engine that produces 207 hp. VW even offers a performance pack for its enthusiastic customers. This pack bumps up the power to 217 hp. The R variant of the Golf has got 292 hp extracted out from its turbocharged 2.0-litre 4-cylinder with Haldex Traction all-wheel-drive. The fastest and most powerful VW Golf that comes out of the factory is powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged inline 4-cylinder engine that has a total of 306 horsepower.

Volkswagen Golf has served millions of people during its entire existence. It has played many different roles. From a basic personal car to a high-performance hatchback, Golf has done it all. It has been used in many motorsports. It has also won many awards including the Motor Trend Car of the Year award, European Car of the Year - twice, the World Car of the Year Award, etc.

The next generation of the Golf will witness some of the other new technology or an advanced feature in the engine, that would make it that much better than its predecessor. The current model of the Golf is definitely one of the best looking hot-hatchbacks that one can buy today. In fact, it is the second best-looking model in the entire history of VW Golf. The first spot will always be taken by the original 1937 Golf.

Explore Volkswagen Golf

  • Golf Front angle low view
  • Rear Cross Side View of Volkswagen Golf
  • Volkswagen Golf Front Cross Side View
  • Golf Headlight
  • Golf Tail light
  • Golf Wheel
  • Golf Front Fog Lamp
  • Golf Door handle
Volkswagen Golf
RM 147,608 - RM 294,905 Emi Starts : RM 1,534

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