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William Maley

VW News: 2017 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack To Begin At $26,670*

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Volkswagen has announced pricing and various details on the upcoming 2017 Golf Alltrack this week.

The Golf Alltrack differs from the Golf SportWagen with 0.6-inch higher ride height, underbody guard for the front bumper, a larger gas tank (14.5-gallon for Alltrack vs. 13.2-gallon for Golf SportWagen), and 4Motion AWD as standard. Power comes from a turbocharged 1.8L four-cylinder with 170 horsepower and 199 pound-feet of torque. Fuel economy is rated at 22 City/30 Highway. 

Pricing begins at $26,670 for the Golf Alltrack S with the manual and $27,770 for the DSG (prices include an $820 destination charge). The S gets leatherette seats, heated front seats, cruise control, an eight-speaker audio system, and a 6.5-inch touchscreen with a backup camera.

The Golf Alltrack SE starts at $30,250 with the manual or $31,350 with the DSG. SE models feature a panoramic sunroof, keyless entry with push-button start, and a Fender audio system. Wrapping up the Golf Alltrack lineup is the SEL which kicks off at $33,710 for the DSG. SEL models come with a 12-way power driver seat, dual-zone climate control, and navigation.

S and SE models can be equipped with an optional Driver Assistance package that adds adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, parking steering assist, and rear park distance control for $845. SEL models get all of these features along with high beam control and bi-xenon headlights with adaptive front lighting for $1,995.

The 2017 Golf Alltrack arrives at dealers in a few weeks.

Source: Volkswagen

Press Release is on Page 2


2017 GOLF ALLTRACK: VOLKSWAGEN’S STYLISH AND SOPHISTICATED WAGON IS READY FOR ADVENTURE
Sep 11, 2016

  • MSRP ranges from $26,950 for the S model to $32,890 for the top-tier SEL trim
  • 4Motion® all-wheel drive, Hill Descent Control, Alltrack-exclusive “Off Road Mode,” and increased ground clearance provide exceptional performance on a variety of road conditions
  • Available advanced driver assistance systems include: Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) and Forward Collision Warning and Autonomous Emergency Braking (Front Assist), front and rear Park Distance Control (ParkPilot), Parking Steering Assistant (Park Assist), Lane Departure Warning system (Lane Assist), and High Beam Control (Light Assist)
  • Golf platform offers the utility of a compact SUV—cargo volume, roof rack—without compromise in road manners
  • High-tech features include a standard 6.5-inch touchscreen with rearview camera, Volkswagen Car-Net® App-Connect and an available Off-Road HMI section for the MIB infotainment platform

Herndon, VA – The Golf Alltrack, the eagerly awaited derivative of the Golf SportWagen, marries that vehicle’s practicality and fun-to-drive nature with the capabilities of 4Motion® all-wheel drive and rugged exterior styling. The Alltrack offers an affordable yet upscale alternative to existing all-wheel-drive wagons that are on the market.

The Alltrack uses Volkswagen’s powerful yet fuel-efficient 1.8-liter TSI® turbocharged and direct-injected four-cylinder engine, which makes 170 horsepower and 199 pound-feet of torque. The TSI engine will initially be offered with a six-speed DSG® dual-clutch automatic transmission, with a six-speed manual transmission available later in the model year. The latest generation 4Motion all-wheel-drive system features a fast-acting center differential. Golf Alltrack will be available in three trims—S, SE and SEL—and will be in dealer showrooms in October.

Exterior

The Golf SportWagen body shape is immediately evident in the Alltrack, but there is absolutely no mistaking the two. Despite the overall length and width remaining roughly the same at 180.2 inches and 70.8 inches, the overall height has been increased because ride height is elevated by 0.6 inches. This change in proportions helps to make for a bolder, more capable appearance without compromising the pillars of Volkswagen design DNA—tight, crisp lines and understated-yet-modern surfaces.

From the front, the Alltrack’s rugged character becomes even more apparent, with a redesigned bumper and added underbody guard, a matte-aluminum low-profile radiator grille crossbar extending into the headlights, a lower silver crossbar that incorporates standard foglights and unique black honeycomb grilles.

The Alltrack’s profile also provides differentiation from the SportWagen, with body cladding on the side sills and around the wheelarches that carries over to the lower areas of the redesigned bumpers. Unique accenting can also be seen in the silver roof rails, Reflex Silver side mirrors and lower window chrome molding. A panoramic sunroof is standard equipment on SE and SEL grades. Also obvious from the side are the standard 17-inch aluminum-alloy “Valley” wheels (18-inch “Canyon” on the SEL) and the impressive ground clearance of 6.9 inches.

At the back, the Alltrack sports dark-red taillights and a new bumper that is highlighted by dominant silver underbody protection, matching the style of the side sills and incorporating chrome exhaust outlets on either side. “Alltrack” and “4Motion” badging also make it clear this is a distinctly different vehicle than its Golf brethren.

In addition to the standard foglights and LED Daytime Running Lights (all trims) with automatic headlight activation (SE and SEL only), a Driver Assist & Lighting Package is available for the Alltrack SEL that adds automatic headlight adjustment and replaces the halogen headlights with Bi-Xenon units.

Interior

Inside, the Alltrack offers the same spacious 94.3 cubic feet of passenger volume as the SportWagen, as well as 30.4 cubic feet of cargo room behind the rear seats and 66.5 cubic feet with the rear seats folded. Headroom also remains the same at 38.6 inches, as does the front and rear shoulder room of 55.9 and 53.9 inches and front and rear legroom of 41.2 and 35.6 inches.

Despite having the same measurements, there are some notable differences that make the Alltrack’s upscale cabin stand out. V-Tex leatherette seating surfaces—including a unique “Marrakesh” brown color option—are standard equipment across the line, along with heatable front seats. A 12-way power driver seat is standard on the SEL trim. The unique interior equipment of the Alltrack adds a black headliner, a 4Motion-branded chrome strip on the center console, stainless-steel door kickplates with the Alltrack logo, and custom aluminum-look pedals.

In addition to the expansive interior space, driver controls are positioned to help optimize ergonomics and usability. The seat position, height of the shifter and the spacing between the pedals are fine-tuned for increased driver comfort. This driver-centric design focus is evident from the center stack, which is angled towards the driver, a feature frequently seen in premium luxury or performance vehicles. Ambient lighting further highlights this upscale character, as well as the use of premium materials throughout, such as the soft-touch plastics and leather-wrapped handbrake, shifter knob and multi-function steering wheel.

An equal amount of attention has been paid to helping to optimize comfort and convenience throughout the lineup. The Alltrack comes equipped with a long list of modern comfort, convenience and entertainment features, including power windows, locks and mirrors, rearview camera, Bluetooth® technology and Volkswagen Car-Net® Security and Service. KESSY® keyless access with push-button start is standard equipment on SE and SEL trim levels, as is the Fender® Premium Audio System, while Climatronic® automatic dual-zone climate control is standard on SEL models. The Alltrack S is equipped with an eight-speaker audio system.

As standard equipment across the Alltrack line, the MIB II infotainment system not only creates the foundation for the next generation of Volkswagen’s Car-Net connected vehicle services platform, but also offers one of the most comprehensive suites of connected vehicle services and features available in the automotive industry today. The Composition Media unit is standard in S and SE trims, while the Discover Media navigation unit is found in the SEL trim. Both MIB II units are anchored around a 6.5-inch, 800x480 capacitive color touchscreen display with proximity sensor.

The Alltrack SEL also features the Discover Media unit, which upgrades the 6.5-inch touchscreen with 2.5D Navigation, one-shot voice destination entry, predicts possible destinations based on often used routes, and Destination Entry with Quick Search and Auto-complete, and Car-Net Guide & Inform.

Compatible smartphone integration is a key part of this system, offering users the ability to run certain smartphone apps directly on the vehicle’s display through services like Apple CarPlay®, Android Auto™ and MirroLink®.  Alltrack’s infotainment system also offers AUX-in, SD card and USB multimedia interfaces with Apple iPhone® and iPod® compatibility, as well as a rearview camera display and Bluetooth technology with audio streaming for compatible phones. Other features include the ability to sync two phones simultaneously, along with a JPEG viewer, SiriusXM® Satellite Radio, HD Radio and support for lossless audio file format (Free Lossless Audio Codec FLAC).

Security & Service

With the Car-Net Security & Service suite, owners can access their VW remotely through vw.com/carnet as well as a smartphone app, providing access to the features available from virtually anywhere your mobile device is connected to wireless internet.

Available security related features include Automatic Crash Notification, which can automatically notify an operator who can contact first responders in the event of an collision; Manual Emergency Call, a feature that allows for quick access to customer specialists at the touch of a button; Roadside Assistance, for added peace-of-mind in the event of trouble on the road; and Stolen Vehicle Location Assistance, which uses VW Car-Net Security & Service to assist law enforcement with locating your vehicle in the event that it is stolen.

In addition, Volkswagen Car-Net Security & Service offers layers of convenience, such as remote vehicle access, remote door lock and unlock, remote honk and flash (of lights), last parked location information, and remote status check (doors and windows).

The Car-Net Security & Service also offers Family Guardian, a suite of features that help families. Features including speed alert, which can notify the owner of the vehicle when the preset maximum speed limit is exceeded; and boundary alert, which can alert you if the vehicle has traveled outside of a pre-set virtual boundary.

Diagnostics and maintenance information is also available through VW Car-Net. A Vehicle Health Report allows Volkswagen customers to check to see an overview of vehicle diagnostics. When it’s time for scheduled service, Car-Net Security & Service can not only alert the customer, but also provide a simple way to schedule a dealer visit. It can even identify the closest dealer in case you need a recommendation.

Customers purchasing new Volkswagen models equipped with Volkswagen Car-Net Security & Service connected vehicle services (not including App-Connect) will receive a no-charge trial for six months after purchase. To extend the benefits of this connectivity system, customers can choose from a number of Volkswagen Car-Net payment options: 1 year, for $199; 2 years for $378; 3 years for $540; or, month-to-month, for $17.99.

Guide & Inform. Car-Net Guide & Inform offers an enhanced navigation and infotainment experience for Volkswagen customers. Volkswagen has incorporated technologies that enhance existing navigation offerings while adding an additional level of information that empowers owners.

Satellite navigation is refined with Car-Net Guide & Inform, which incorporates several layers of information right onto the screen. MIB II-equipped Volkswagen models with in-vehicle navigation systems feature real-time fuel prices, sports scores, movie information and weather data as part of the three month SiriusXM Travel Link trial. Volkswagen customers will also enjoy real-time traffic information and a complimentary three-month SiriusXM Traffic trial.

Customers purchasing new Volkswagen models equipped with Volkswagen Car-Net connected vehicle services (not including App-Connect) will receive a no-charge trial for six months after purchase. To extend the benefits of this connectivity system, customers can choose from a number of Volkswagen Car-Net payment options: 1 year, for $199; 2 years for $378; 3 years for $540; or, month-to-month, for $17.99. App-Connect can be used free-of-charge and is not included as part of the subscription-based services. Car-Net Guide & Inform services are provided by SiriusXM, and following the three-month trial period of SiriusXM Travel Link and SiriusXM Traffic, customers can contact SiriusXM at www.siriusxm.com to learn how to initiate paid subscriptions to these services.

Powertrain

The Alltrack shares its 1.8-liter TSI engine with other members of the seventh-generation Golf lineup. This four-cylinder gasoline unit is a member of the latest EA888 engine family, utilizing turbocharged induction and direct fuel injection to help achieve excellent efficiency while still delivering impressive power. Output is rated at 170 horsepower at 4500 rpm and a stout 199 pound-feet of torque beginning at just 1600 rpm.

Across all grades, Alltrack is launching with a six-speed DSG dual-clutch automatic transmission. A six-speed manual transmission will be available early in 2017 on the S and SE trimlines. Regardless of transmission, power is routed to all four wheels via the 4Motion all-wheel-drive system.

Also unique to Alltrack is a large 14.5-gallon fuel tank, which offers a greater range for adventure than SportWagen’s 13.2-gallon tank. The EPA-estimated fuel economy is 30 mpg highway and 22 mpg city.

4Motion all-wheel-drive system

One of the Alltrack’s key features is the 4Motion permanent all-wheel-drive system. The latest-generation 4Motion system is activated before any wheelspin occurs, helping eliminate nearly all traction losses. The system achieves this by using an advanced control function based on specific driving conditions. When operating under a relatively low load or when coasting, the front wheels are driven and the rear wheels are decoupled, which can help save fuel. However, the rear wheels can be engaged in fractions of a second whenever necessary via the center differential, which is activated by an electro-hydraulic oil pump.

A control unit continually calculates the ideal drive torque for the rear wheels and controls how much the multi-plate clutch should be closed by activating the oil pump. The oil pressure increases the contact pressure at the clutch plates in proportion to the torque desired at the rear axle. So, the amount of pressure applied to the clutch plates can be used to continuously vary the amount of torque going between the front and rear wheels, up to a maximum of 50 percent at the rear axle.

In addition to the center differential that acts longitudinally, electronic differential locks (EDL) that are a function of the electronic stability control system act laterally. The system can briefly brake a wheel that is slipping, enabling uninterrupted and stable transfer of drive power to the wheel on the opposite side.

Chassis

As a member of the modern Golf lineup, Alltrack is built on the same MQB chassis architecture as the rest of the line. The unitary construction chassis has two solid-mounted subframes with bolt-on front fenders, and utilizes new technologies such as laser clamp welding, which produces “wobble seam” welds in a wave pattern to help maximize strength in a limited space, offering up to four times the strength of a traditional spot weld.

The stamped steel body and chassis boasts a large percentage of high-strength, hot-formed steel. This technology, along with the use of newly developed ultra-high-strength steels, allows much of the chassis and body to be constructed from thinner and lighter parts without any loss in strength. Additionally, thanks to the use of selective thickness for parts, a single component can be tailor-rolled to have as many as 11 zones of varying thicknesses.

Thanks to the extensive use of modern construction techniques and high- and ultra-high strength steels, Alltrack’s chassis manages to remain lightweight despite its upscale features and enhanced crash structure. Throughout the car, incredible attention to detail has optimized components—such as the seats, air conditioning system, and even the electrical architecture—to help save weight.

The Alltrack has its own, unique suspension tuning, with a ride height that is raised by 0.6 inches. Up front, a strut layout uses coil springs, telescopic dampers, and an anti-roll bar, with a multilink arrangement with coil springs, telescopic dampers and anti-roll bar at the back.

The Golf Alltrack’s braking system features 11.3-inch vented front discs and 10.7-inch solid rear discs with standard three-channel ABS with electronic brake pressure distribution. The rack-and-pinion steering features electric power assist and features a 13.6:1 ratio that allows for 2.76 turns from lock to lock and a vehicle turning circle of 35.8 feet.

The Alltrack features a unique Driving Mode Selection that enables an Off Road Mode setting. This driving profile alters the ABS system and accelerator pedal character and activates the hill descent function, helping Alltrack deliver exceptional performance off the beaten path. The available Off-Road HMI that is part of the navigation system displays compass, steering angle, and altitude when driving off-road.

Alltrack is also equipped with the XDS+® Cross Differential System—a feature originally developed for the performance-oriented GTI model. This technology acts somewhat like an electronic substitute for a traditional mechanical limited-slip differential, working by actively monitoring data from each wheel sensor. If the suspension becomes unloaded, the system automatically applies braking to the driven inside wheel as needed to help reduce understeer (the tendency for the front wheels to run wide). This not only helps stability, but can also help improve handling and cornering performance.

Safety

Like the rest of the Golf line, Alltrack provides an intelligent combination of both passive and active safety systems. The 2017 Alltrack has been given a 5-star overall safety rating from the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA).

A standard feature on all 2017 Alltrack models is the Automatic Post-Collision Braking System. This builds on the premise that a collision is rarely a single, instantaneous action, but rather a series of events that follow the initial impact—the most significant of which can cause additional collisions. The Automatic Post-Collision Braking System addresses this by applying the brakes when a primary collision is detected by the airbag sensors, thus helping to reduce residual kinetic energy and, in turn, the chance of additional damage.

The Alltrack also includes Volkswagen’s Intelligent Crash Response System that shuts off the fuel pump, unlocks the doors, and switches on the hazard lights if the car is involved in certain types of collisions. All Alltrack models are equipped with standard Electronic Stability Control (ESC).

Driver Assistance Systems

The Alltrack S and SE are available with the Driver Assistance Package (MSRP $845) that adds Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC), Forward Collision Warning and Autonomous Emergency Braking (Front Assist), front and rear Park Distance Control (ParkPilot), and Parking Steering Assistant (Park Assist). The Alltrack SEL can be equipped with the Driver Assistance & Lighting Package ($1,995), which includes the above-listed systems and adds an auto-dimming rearview mirror, Lane Departure Warning system (Lane Assist), High Beam Control (Light Assist), and Bi-Xenon headlights with the Adaptive Front-lighting System (AFS).

Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) uses forward facing radar to maintain a set speed while helping maintain a set distance to the vehicle in front. The driver sets the speed and the desired spacing via buttons on the multifunction steering wheel and can use the accelerator, brake pedal, or steering wheel to cancel or override the ACC function. All system messages appear in the central multifunction display.

When the roadway ahead of the vehicle is empty, the system maintains the set speed. Alltrack models fitted with automatic transmissions and ACC can match the speed of a vehicle in front and come to a stop, as well as resume ACC control after the driver presses the accelerator pedal or the “resume” button on the steering wheel. On manual transmission Alltrack models, the ACC ceases to operate below 19 mph.

Within physical system limits, Forward Collision Warning helps warn the driver of critical front-end collision situations, both acoustically and visually by a warning symbol in the instrument cluster, and, if necessary, Autonomous Emergency Braking is activated to slow the vehicle if the driver fails to brake. If the brake pedal is applied but the driver brakes too lightly, the brake pressure is increased by the system.

If there is an indication that the vehicle is unintentionally straying from its lane, an available Lane Departure Warning system can actively countersteer to help keep the vehicle in the lane above 40 mph. The system’s camera can recognize visible lane markings (one side can suffice) and, using a special algorithm, calculates the risk of the car leaving the lane. If the driver takes their hands off the wheel for a defined period of time, or the vehicle crosses a lane marking without use of a turn signal, the system countersteers and later provides an audible warning and a visual signal in the instrument cluster, asking the driver to take over steering.

The system works in the dark and/or in fog, but will not engage if it cannot properly detect lane markings. If the turn signal has been set before crossing a lane marking, the Lane Departure Warning system will not engage or give a warning. The driver can “override” the system at any time by applying minimal force, and is not relieved of responsibility to make conscious driving decisions.

Park Distance Control uses ultrasonic sensors located in the front and rear bumpers to monitor a range of up to five feet in front or behind the vehicle. The system is activated when reverse gear is engaged or below a speed of 9 mph and helps provide guidance when parking or in tight situations. The system has audible and visual warnings when the car starts to approach parked cars or static objects from the front or rear.

Park Assist can automatically steer the car into parallel and perpendicular parking spaces in reverse. After pressing the Park Assist button – once for parallel and twice for perpendicular – the driver only needs to activate the accelerator pedal and brake once a gear is selected.

The driver can override or deactivate the steering assistance at any time by turning the steering wheel, disengaging reverse gear or pressing the button. Below 25 mph, the system can scan both the left-hand and right-hand sides of the road, for example in a one-way street, for any parking spaces as it drives past. By activating the turn signal, the driver stipulates which side of the road they wish to park on.

Limited Warranty

2017 Golf Alltrack models are offered with Volkswagen’s standard five-year/60,000-mile (whichever occurs first) powertrain limited warranty and three-year/36,000-mile (whichever occurs first) new vehicle limited warranty.

Model Line-up

Destination on all Golf Alltrack models is $820

Alltrack S
$25,850 with manual transmission (late availability)
$26,950 with automatic transmission

Alltrack SE
$29,430 with manual transmission (late availability)
$30,530 with automatic transmission

Alltrack SEL
$32,890 with automatic transmission

Competitive Set
Subaru Outback
Subaru XV Crosstrek


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Now if I could only get a killer loyalty offer from VW when i turn in the TDI.....HMMM.....nice looking wagon!

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Real nice looking wagon.  Something's missing though.

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4 minutes ago, Frisky Dingo said:

Man, if this only had the 2.0T, I'd trade my GTI and wife's Rav in on it in a heart beat.

I actually thought the same thing. I was uber disappointed when I read it has the 1.8T.

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12 minutes ago, ccap41 said:

I actually thought the same thing. I was uber disappointed when I read it has the 1.8T.

 

I'm not disappointed, because the 1.8T is still a great little engine. I just wouldn't want to go down in power/performance. The 1.8 makes GTI numbers with just a flash/tune. And even in stock guise, they are more than adequate. Punchy down low, but without running of breath up top. Paired with the DSG, this is probably a quite enjoyable package. 

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18 hours ago, Frisky Dingo said:

 

I'm not disappointed, because the 1.8T is still a great little engine. I just wouldn't want to go down in power/performance. The 1.8 makes GTI numbers with just a flash/tune. And even in stock guise, they are more than adequate. Punchy down low, but without running of breath up top. Paired with the DSG, this is probably a quite enjoyable package. 

Indeed, but I would want a DSG tune as well.  Was going to put one on the Jetta before the buy back scenario.

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      One change that we're happy to see is the Volkswagen has given the all-new Jetta some style. The front end reminds us of the European-spec Passat with the hexagonal grille and sculpted hood. The side profile shows off a distinctive character line and a somewhat coupe-like roof. Volkswagen says the Jetta is bigger in all dimensions, but only mentions the number for the wheelbase increase, 1.3 inches.
      The interior appears to be worlds better than the outgoing model with a similar design to the new Tiguan and higher-quality materials. All models get a touchscreen infotainment system, while the SEL and SEL Premium also get Volkswagen's digital cockpit that allows drivers to configure the layout to their liking.
      The turbocharged 1.4L four-cylinder is sticking around for the new Jetta. Output is rated at 147 horsepower and 187 pound-feet of torque. The base Jetta will get a six-speed manual as standard, while higher trims get a new eight-speed automatic. Under the skin, Volkswagen has finally moved the Jetta to their MQB platform.
      Volkswagen will offer the Jetta in five different trims when it launches in the second quarter of this year - S, SE, R-Line, SEL, and SEL Premium. Pricing will begin at $18,545.
      Source: Volkswagen
      Press Release is on Page 2
      ALL-NEW 2019 VOLKSWAGEN JETTA MAKES GLOBAL DEBUT AT THE NORTH AMERICAN INTERNATIONAL AUTO SHOW

      Jan 14, 2018
      The all-new Jetta raises the bar in the compact sedan class, with bold design, innovative technology features, and a transferable, 6-year/72,000-mile New Vehicle Limited Warranty Jetta is now based off the award-winning MQB architecture Sleek coupe-like exterior design features shorter overhangs and a bold new face Upscale driver-centric interior features premium materials and modern design 1.4-liter TSI engine is paired with six-speed manual or eight-speed automatic transmissions Aluminum-alloy wheels, App-Connect and full LED lighting are standard Available driver assistance technology  includes: Front Assist, Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Traffic Alert, Adaptive Cruise Control, Lane Assist, and Light Assist Available premium features include: Volkswagen Digital Cockpit, 10-color ambient lighting, panoramic sunroof, heated and ventilated leather seats, and 400-watt BeatsAudio® system The People First Warranty, with 6-years/72,000-mile (whichever occurs first) coverage Pricing starts at $18,545, less than the outgoing model Detroit, Mich. – Today, Volkswagen of America, Inc., unveiled the all-new 2019 Jetta at the North American International Auto Show. The Jetta is one of the world’s most successful sedans, with more than 17 million models sold worldwide since it was introduced in 1979: more than 3.2 million of those vehicles have been sold in the United States. Now based off the award-winning MQB platform, the 2019 Jetta offers bolder design, more interior space than the outgoing model and new technology. Despite all the additional premium features and technology, the all-new 2019 Jetta pricing starts at $18,545, less than the outgoing base model.
      “The Jetta has long been Volkswagen’s best-selling vehicle in the United States,” said Hinrich J. Woebcken, CEO of the North American Region, Volkswagen, “and we expect that this all-new car will continue to resonate with buyers in the compact sedan class. With its combination of great technology, fuel-efficient drivetrains, sporty styling, upscale interior and amenities, and fun-to-drive nature, we expect that the Jetta will make a huge splash in the compact sedan market when it goes on sale.”
      The Jetta is based on Volkswagen’s Modular Transverse Matrix (MQB) architecture. Compared with the current car, the new Jetta grows outside in every direction. It offers a longer wheelbase—105.7 inches compared to 104.4 inches—with shorter overhangs, and is longer, wider and taller than the outgoing model. The increased exterior proportions add up to more interior space than the previous car as well.
      Outside, the all-new Jetta marks an evolution in Volkswagen’s clean and timeless design DNA, with modern lines and a refined appearance. The combination of large front grille and sharper lines exudes a bold character, while the addition of more chrome and standard LED lighting lend a premium feel. A fast-sloping roof line creates a sportier, coupe-like profile without compromising the usability of the rear seat.
      Inside, the Jetta’s fully redesigned interior combines high-tech features with everyday usability and refined fit and finish. High quality soft-touch materials throughout and new trapezoidal design elements give the vehicle an upscale, yet modern feel. The 2019 Jetta sports new fabric colors and designs for the seats and door trim as well as optional 10-color customizable wrap-around ambient lighting. To keep occupants comfortable, Jetta will offer available heated and ventilated front seats, power driver’s seat with memory functionality, leather seating surfaces, and dual-zone Climatronic® automatic climate control. A new center storage console is 5-liters—large enough to fit a standard iPad.
      The driver-oriented cockpit features an infotainment screen placed high in the dashboard, to make all vehicle information easily accessible to the driver. Every Jetta offers standard Driver Personalization with up to four driver settings. Dependent on trim, customizable features include: driver seat memory, driver assistance system preferences, temperature, Volkswagen Digital Cockpit arrangement (if equipped), ambient lighting color, radio presets, navigation view, and more.
      Jetta SEL and SEL Premium models feature a standard Volkswagen Digital Cockpit display, offering drivers a reconfigurable display of key data and the ability to position navigation data front and center for easy viewing. The available Volkswagen Car-Net® system provides a suite of connected vehicle services, including standard App-Connect technology that offers compatible smartphone integration with the three major platforms—Apple CarPlay™, Android Auto™ and MirrorLink®.  The new Jetta is the first Volkswagen in the U.S. to offer an available 400-watt BeatsAudio® system.
      The Jetta’s technology upgrades extend beyond the cabin to include a comprehensive suite of available driver assistance technology. A rearview camera comes standard and available features include: Forward Collision Warning and Autonomous Emergency Braking (Front Assist); Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Traffic Alert; Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC), upgraded for use in stop and go traffic; High Beam Control (Light Assist); and Lane Departure Warning (Lane Assist), which actively helps the driver steer the car back into its lane should the vehicle start drifting into another lane without using the turn signal.
      In addition, the 2019 Jetta offers a combination of both passive and active safety systems that are engineered to meet or exceed current crash regulations. These systems include the class exclusive Automatic Post-Collision Braking System.
      The new Jetta will continue to be powered by Volkswagen’s 1.4-liter turbocharged and direct-injection TSI® engine, making 147 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque, the highest in the compact sedan class. The power is taken to the front wheels via a new standard six-speed manual transmission, with an eight-speed automatic transmission optional on the base model and standard on higher trims. Automatic transmission models come standard with a Start/Stop system designed to improve fuel efficiency. This technology stops the engine during idle when the brake pedal is held (such as when waiting at a stop light). When the brake pedal is released, the engine restarts.
      Every Jetta model will come with the People First Warranty, America’s best bumper-to-bumper new vehicle limited warranty. The warranty provides coverage for six-years or 72,000-miles (whichever occurs first), and the warranty can be transferred to subsequent owners throughout the remainder of its duration.
      The 2019 Volkswagen Jetta will be available in S, SE, SEL, and SEL Premium trim levels and is expected to arrive at U.S. Volkswagen dealers in the second quarter of 2018. An R-Line trim will join the lineup at launch and features sportier styling, exclusive interior and exterior design elements, R-Line badging, and the XDS® electronic differential.
    • By William Maley
      Despite the popularity of compact crossovers, it seems somewhat odd there isn’t a large number of hybrid variants. In fact, there is only one available, the Toyota RAV4 Hybrid. Going hybrid usually means a hit in performance and cargo space. But in the case of the RAV4 Hybrid, it is quicker than the standard model and cargo space isn’t greatly affected. I spent some time with the RAV4 Hybrid over the holidays where it was driven to Northern Michigan and back. This is what I learned.
      The RAV4 Hybrid’s powertrain is comprised of a 2.5L four-cylinder, three electric motors (one acting as the engine starter and battery charger, the other two drive the wheels and provide AWD), and a Sealed Nickel-Metal Hydride battery pack. Total output is rated at 194 horsepower. Power is routed through a CVT. Fuel economy figures are noticeably better than the RAV4 SE AWD I drove last year - 34 City/30 Highway/32 Combined for the Hybrid vs. 22/29/25 for the standard RAV4. My average for the week landed around 30.7 MPG. I think the average could have been higher if Michigan had not experienced a cold snap where temperatures fell to single digits at times, causing the engine to run longer to keep the vehicle warm. The hybrid also feels slightly quicker than the standard RAV4 thanks to the electric motors providing instantaneous torque when leaving a stop. But merging on to a freeway or passing becomes a bit unpleasant as the engine pegs at high rpms to provide the power needed. This also brings forth a lot of noise from the engine and CVT. Doing a lot of driving on the freeway and country roads made me really appreciate the smooth and compliant ride of the RAV4 Hybrid. Most bumps and road imperfections are smoothed over. Some credit has to go to the 17-inch wheels on the XLE. Handling is competent as the suspension keeps body motions in check. However, the rubbery steering and low-rolling resistance tires will make drivers think twice about pushing the RAV4 Hybrid.  The low-rolling resistance tires also hamper traction in snow. I could tell when driving in deep snow, the all-wheel drive was working a bit harder to keep the vehicle moving. If you live in a snowy area, I would highly recommend swapping the low-rolling resistance tires for a set of all-seasons or winter tires. At first glance, the RAV4 Hybrid looks like any other RAV4. It is only when you get closer that you will notice the blue-tinted emblems and ‘Hybrid’ badging on the front fenders and tailgate. The interior is much the same as any other RAV4 aside from a different gauge cluster and a button to activate the EV mode. This is ok as the RAV4 is an ok place to sit in with a utilitarian design that puts various controls within easy reach for driver and passenger. Materials are what you would expect to find in a vehicle of this class, a mix of soft and hard-touch plastics. The back seat is still a plus point to the RAV4 as there is plenty of head and legroom for most passengers. Cargo space in the hybrid is about 3 cubic feet smaller than the standard RAV4 due to the battery with the rear seats up or down. Still, the hybrid’s cargo space is one the of the largest in the compact crossover class and I was able to fit luggage for myself and my brother, along with gifts for various relatives with no issue. All RAV4 Hybrids come with Toyota’s Entune infotainment system with a 6.1-inch touchscreen. The system is becoming quite dated in terms of the interface and features - no Apple CarPlay or Android Auto for example. On the upside, Entune is easy to master thanks to a simple layout and physical shortcut buttons to various functions. 2017 saw Toyota make a number of active safety features standard on all RAV4s. That includes radar cruise control, pre-collision system with pedestrian detection, automatic high beams, and lane keep assist. I would like to see blind spot monitoring added to this suite. The 2017 RAV4 Hybrid begins at $29,030 for the base XLE, about $4,000 more than the RAV4 XLE. Taking into consideration the noticeable fuel economy increase and better performance, I would be willing to spend the extra cash. Disclaimer: Toyota Provided the RAV4 Hybrid, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2017
      Make: Toyota
      Model: RAV4 Hybrid
      Trim: XLE
      Engine: 2.5L Atkinson-Cycle 16-Valve DOHC with Dual VVT-i Four-Cylinder, Two 650V Electric Motors
      Driveline: CVT, AWD
      Horsepower @ RPM: 150 @ 5,700 (Gas), 105 kW (Front Electric Motor), 50 kW (Rear Electric Motor), 194 (Combined Output)
      Torque @ RPM: 152 @ 4,400 (Gas)
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 34/30/32
      Curb Weight: 3,925 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Obu, Aichi, Japan
      Base Price: $29,030
      As Tested Price: $31,965 (Includes $940.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      Convenience Package - $1,905.00
      Tonneau Cover - $90.00

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      Despite the popularity of compact crossovers, it seems somewhat odd there isn’t a large number of hybrid variants. In fact, there is only one available, the Toyota RAV4 Hybrid. Going hybrid usually means a hit in performance and cargo space. But in the case of the RAV4 Hybrid, it is quicker than the standard model and cargo space isn’t greatly affected. I spent some time with the RAV4 Hybrid over the holidays where it was driven to Northern Michigan and back. This is what I learned.
      The RAV4 Hybrid’s powertrain is comprised of a 2.5L four-cylinder, three electric motors (one acting as the engine starter and battery charger, the other two drive the wheels and provide AWD), and a Sealed Nickel-Metal Hydride battery pack. Total output is rated at 194 horsepower. Power is routed through a CVT. Fuel economy figures are noticeably better than the RAV4 SE AWD I drove last year - 34 City/30 Highway/32 Combined for the Hybrid vs. 22/29/25 for the standard RAV4. My average for the week landed around 30.7 MPG. I think the average could have been higher if Michigan had not experienced a cold snap where temperatures fell to single digits at times, causing the engine to run longer to keep the vehicle warm. The hybrid also feels slightly quicker than the standard RAV4 thanks to the electric motors providing instantaneous torque when leaving a stop. But merging on to a freeway or passing becomes a bit unpleasant as the engine pegs at high rpms to provide the power needed. This also brings forth a lot of noise from the engine and CVT. Doing a lot of driving on the freeway and country roads made me really appreciate the smooth and compliant ride of the RAV4 Hybrid. Most bumps and road imperfections are smoothed over. Some credit has to go to the 17-inch wheels on the XLE. Handling is competent as the suspension keeps body motions in check. However, the rubbery steering and low-rolling resistance tires will make drivers think twice about pushing the RAV4 Hybrid.  The low-rolling resistance tires also hamper traction in snow. I could tell when driving in deep snow, the all-wheel drive was working a bit harder to keep the vehicle moving. If you live in a snowy area, I would highly recommend swapping the low-rolling resistance tires for a set of all-seasons or winter tires. At first glance, the RAV4 Hybrid looks like any other RAV4. It is only when you get closer that you will notice the blue-tinted emblems and ‘Hybrid’ badging on the front fenders and tailgate. The interior is much the same as any other RAV4 aside from a different gauge cluster and a button to activate the EV mode. This is ok as the RAV4 is an ok place to sit in with a utilitarian design that puts various controls within easy reach for driver and passenger. Materials are what you would expect to find in a vehicle of this class, a mix of soft and hard-touch plastics. The back seat is still a plus point to the RAV4 as there is plenty of head and legroom for most passengers. Cargo space in the hybrid is about 3 cubic feet smaller than the standard RAV4 due to the battery with the rear seats up or down. Still, the hybrid’s cargo space is one the of the largest in the compact crossover class and I was able to fit luggage for myself and my brother, along with gifts for various relatives with no issue. All RAV4 Hybrids come with Toyota’s Entune infotainment system with a 6.1-inch touchscreen. The system is becoming quite dated in terms of the interface and features - no Apple CarPlay or Android Auto for example. On the upside, Entune is easy to master thanks to a simple layout and physical shortcut buttons to various functions. 2017 saw Toyota make a number of active safety features standard on all RAV4s. That includes radar cruise control, pre-collision system with pedestrian detection, automatic high beams, and lane keep assist. I would like to see blind spot monitoring added to this suite. The 2017 RAV4 Hybrid begins at $29,030 for the base XLE, about $4,000 more than the RAV4 XLE. Taking into consideration the noticeable fuel economy increase and better performance, I would be willing to spend the extra cash. Disclaimer: Toyota Provided the RAV4 Hybrid, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2017
      Make: Toyota
      Model: RAV4 Hybrid
      Trim: XLE
      Engine: 2.5L Atkinson-Cycle 16-Valve DOHC with Dual VVT-i Four-Cylinder, Two 650V Electric Motors
      Driveline: CVT, AWD
      Horsepower @ RPM: 150 @ 5,700 (Gas), 105 kW (Front Electric Motor), 50 kW (Rear Electric Motor), 194 (Combined Output)
      Torque @ RPM: 152 @ 4,400 (Gas)
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 34/30/32
      Curb Weight: 3,925 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Obu, Aichi, Japan
      Base Price: $29,030
      As Tested Price: $31,965 (Includes $940.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      Convenience Package - $1,905.00
      Tonneau Cover - $90.00
    • By William Maley
      Back in August, we reported that Volkswagen was planning to send the Passat GT concept shown at the 2016 LA Auto Show into production. The concept was Volkswagen's attempt at making the Passat become a bit more exciting with numerous cosmetic changes, a VR6 engine, and slight tweaks to the suspension. Next week at the Detroit Auto Show, Volkswagen will show off the production model.
      The exterior of the Passat GT matches up with the concept as there are a blacked-out honeycomb grille, red accent striping, blacked-out trim, 19-inch wheels, and a black decklid spoiler. Only four colors will be available on the GT; Pure White, Reflex Silver, Platinum Grey, and Deep Black. Inside, Volkswagen has added a fair amount of piano black and carbon fiber trim; two-tone leatherette upholstery for the seats, and aluminum GT-badged sills.
      Under the hood is the venerable 3.6L VR6 producing 280 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque - the same power figures as you'll find in the Passat V6 Premium. This is paired with a six-speed DSG. The GT will also feature a sport suspension that lowers the ride height. 
      Volkswagen will begin selling the Passat GT in the second half of 2018 with a base price of $29,940 (includes an $850 destination charge).
      Source: Volkswagen
      Press Release is on Page 2


      VOLKSWAGEN UNVEILS SPORTY 2018 PASSAT GT SPECIAL MODEL AT THE NORTH AMERICAN INTERNATIONAL AUTO SHOW
      GT combines the powerful VR6® engine with a lowered suspension and design enhancements to create the most aggressive looking Passat yet Limited-run model adds more than 20 sporty interior and exterior enhancements to Passat 3.6-liter VR6 engine is paired with a lowered suspension and sport exhaust Designed at Volkswagen’s Engineering and Planning Center in Chattanooga, Tenn. Pricing starts at $29,090 Detroit, Mich. – Today, Volkswagen of America, Inc., debuted the 2018 Passat GT special model at the North American International Auto Show. The production model, previewed by a concept at Automobility LA in 2016, was designed by the company’s North American engineering hub in Chattanooga, Tennessee, based on extensive feedback from U.S. customers and dealers.
      “The Passat GT illustrates how the North American Region can shape Volkswagen vehicles specifically for the U.S. market,” said Dr. Matthias Erb, Chief Engineering Officer, North American Region, Volkswagen. “Combining a local perspective with our global engineering expertise allows us to create vehicles that meet the needs and desires of customers here.”
      The Passat GT joins the Passat lineup for model year 2018 as a limited-run special model based off the R-Line® trim. It will be available in four exterior colors—Pure White, Reflex Silver, Platinum Grey, and Deep Black.
      Starting at the front, Passat GT differentiates itself from standard Passat models with standard LED headlights and LED Daytime Running Lights (DRLs). It borrows the R-Line® bumper and adds a honeycomb grille, GT badge, and a red accent line, reminiscent of the high-performance Golf GTI. A sport suspension gives it a more planted stance and cements the aggressive look.
      Moving around the side of the vehicle, the GT receives sporty touches from top to bottom. A black roof is complimented by black mirror caps and black window and door trim. Two-tone 19-inch “Tornado” wheels are accentuated with red-painted brake calipers, another nod to Volkswagen’s performance heritage.
      At the back, the Passat GT’s accents continue with a black spoiler and blackened LED taillights. The rear fascia also includes black bumper trim and a double exhaust with an acoustic package.
      Inside, the GT features piano black center console and vent trim, carbon fiber optic décor, black headliner, and aluminum GT-badged sills. Seating surfaces are black leatherette with Moonrock Gray inserts and contrast stitching. Standard interior comfort features include: a leather-wrapped steering wheel, 8-way power driver’s seat, heated front seats, dual-zone Climatronic® automatic climate control, and heated side mirrors.
      To keep passengers connected, the Passat GT features a Composition Media infotainment unit with 6.3-inch capacitive touchscreen display and standard Bluetooth® for compatible devices, Voice Control, and Volkswagen Car-Net® App-Connect technology that offers compatible smartphone integration with the three major platforms—Apple CarPlay™, Android Auto™ and MirrorLink®.  GT models feature two USB ports—one in the center console and one in the rear seat console. SiriusXM® Satellite Radio is standard and includes a three-month trial.
      The new Passat GT will be powered by Volkswagen’s 3.6-liter VR6® engine, making it a true sport sedan. Producing an impressive 280 horsepower at 6,200 rpm and 258 lb-ft of torque at 2,500 rpm with regular fuel, it offers power and luxury-class driving comfort with surprising fuel economy—EPA estimated fuel economy is 19 mpg city and 28 mpg highway. Shifting is handled by a standard six-speed DSG® automatic transmission with Tiptronic®, which features steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters.
      Every 2018 Passat model comes with the People First Warranty, America’s best bumper-to-bumper new vehicle limited warranty. The warranty provides coverage for six-years or 72,000-miles (whichever occurs first), and the warranty can be transferred to subsequent owners throughout the remainder of its duration.
      The 2018 Passat GT is expected to arrive at U.S. Volkswagen dealers in the second quarter of 2018. Pricing for the Passat GT starts at $29,090. The destination charge is an additional $850.

      View full article
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