By on March 31, 2015


While we’re still waiting on powertrain specs for the Golf Alltrack, we know this – it will have AWD.

The Haldex system and a 20mm raised ride height are they key specs we know right now. Jalopnik is claiming that a DSG will be mandatory but both gasoline and diesel engines will be offered.

The base Sportwagen is a great car.  Now, is this better or worse than an Audi Allroad?

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25 Comments on “New York 2015: Volkswagen Golf SportWagen Alltrack...”

  • avatar

    VW really should put the GTI’s powertrain in this thing. The 1.8T is perfectly fine for the Golf, and adequate for the FWD Sportwagen, but this is surely going to be even heavier than *that*, and the 170hp is going to start to feel a little anemic. I’m not sure customers paying $30K+ for one of these are going to be too happy with 0-60 in 9+ seconds.

  • avatar

    Wow 2/3 inch of lift, this thing is almost trail ready

  • avatar

    I would seriously consider this as our next vehicle.

    I had a Rabbit diesel in 1980, and it was amazing in many ways – the way you waited from 5 seconds to a minute for the glow plugs to warm up before starting depending on weather, the way the dashboard shook in a blur at idle, the way you rowed like crazy through the gears to keep up with traffic, the way it got over 50 mpg cruising all day at 70 mph with a roof rack, and the way diesel froze to a sludge at 30 below.

    Fast forward to 2014, and we rented a Peugeot 204 (subcompact) direct-injection diesel in France, and it was literally a performance car. It was a pleasure to drive, the torque was awesome, and inside underway, you never felt you were driving a diesel – acceleration at freeway speeds was no problem and it felt more like a strong gasoline V-6. And the mileage was incredible.

    My in-laws own a 4-year-old Jetta direct-injection diesel wagon and love it. Our current two cars (Element and Fit) will soon be downsized to one, and this Golf wagon looks very very good to me…..

  • avatar

    How many of the B&B are thinking:



    In brown, of course …

  • avatar

    So they are trying to build an Outback competitor with a crap Haldex AWD system and, from the looks of the picture above, no ground clearance. Good luck with that. People buy Outbacks because they have good AWD and enough ground clearance to handle two-track gracefully.

    • 0 avatar

      Is there more than one Haldex system? This AWD thing always has been a very confusing thing.
      Isn’t the Ford system a version of the Haldex?
      Only slower?
      Why would VW…always known for its AWD systems in the Audi, be using this system? Isn’t this a Swedish build?

      • 0 avatar

        There are lots of different Haldex systems. But the majority of them are similar in that they distribute 100% of torque to the front under most conditions and only send torque rearward when slip is detected. This causes a delay in sending torque to the rear, which means the AWD system is really only useful for getting unstuck from a stop. It’s less useful in keeping things moving when already underway or preventing torque steer, and not useful at all in improving handling.

        There is no technical reason a Haldex system has to be like this. VW uses one with a permanent torque split in the Golf R, and Honda uses one like that (and with a few other tricks) in SH-AWD Acuras. But I don’t see any reason to think the Golf Alltrack has the Golf R system.

        The system in longitudinal-engine Audis (A4/5/6/7/8, Q5/7, R8) is a Torsen system that is truly full-time and much more responsive. Audi is not using the Torsen system in its transverse-engine cars (A1/2/3, Q3, TT), though. It’s using the same Haldex systems VW is. The S models have a similar system to that in the Golf R, but the non-S models are the same on-demand-only crap everyone else has.

    • 0 avatar

      Not all Outback owners live on dirt roads in Vermont. Plenty of them in my neighborhood in Alexandria Va that I’m positive will never see a dirt road in their lives, and given our climate here won’t see any duty in deep snow, either. I think many people buy these things because that’s what passes for a large wagon these days.
      How different is this from the car that was the Outback (i.e., Legacy wagon with some macho cladding) before the bloat set in?

  • avatar

    In Europe this is rated to tow over 4200 lbs, that is with the tdi. The Subaru Outback with the 6cyl is only rated at 2700 lbs.

    • 0 avatar

      I wouldn’t try to compare tow ratings from the US to elsewhere. The TDI version would probably get a 2000 pound rating here.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      That’s another one of those sort of quirky little regulations you find in the US to promote ‘trucks’.

      Diesel fuel is in the same boat. It’s has a lower cetane value in the US so you can’t run EU tuned diesels. EU diesel run a lower compression ratio that what is possible with US diesel. This equates to lower NOx levels in the emissions.

      This lower cetane diesel has killed off the SkyActive Mazda diesel in the US because the Skyactive diesel runs a extremely low compression ratio so DEF wouldn’t be required.

      We have cars here that are similar and can tow more than what a vehicle can in the US.

  • avatar

    might be nice if you can keep it running. I’d hate to pay for this and for it’s upkeep.

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    I do think VW has really improved the aesthetics of their vehicles. I do think the VW front ends are the best in the business overall at the moment.

  • avatar

    If only they’d give the standard Golf the Alltrack treatment, it would become my new dream car.

  • avatar

    This should be very solid competition for the Impreza for sure, the Outback to a lesser extent. I expect that once we get a Passat Alltrack here it will compete well against the Outback. With the lower manufacturing costs of the new Euro Passat there’s a better liklihood of Volkswagen of America getting that car (Alltrack model) here in the US before the US Passat changes architecture to MQB around 2018.

    Compared to the allroad? Hard to say. The allroad, even for its age, is a very nice, refined product that feels every bit it’s near $40k entry price (pro tip: CPO ’13 and ’14 models are great values in the low $30s). This new Golf model, while only slightly smaller on the interior dimensions, will feel smaller and given the shorter wheelbase will have a less compliant ride. Not bad, just not as good as.

    B9 A4 and variants will be intro’d starting late this summer, it’ll be interesting to see how Audi changes things up.

    • 0 avatar

      It’d be nice if they’d do the same thing for the Passat Wagon as they used to do for the “Jetta” wagon, and have the US market sedan but bring over the Euro version of the wagon, including the Alltrack model. I’m not holding my breath though.

  • avatar

    I imagine this will only be very slightly cheaper than the Audi version, and thus will not sell well. This will be one of those “Look at this special Euro product we’ve provided for you!” moments for VW, where they get on a high horse about pricing.

    • 0 avatar

      No way, CoreyDL. This should be priced squarely in the $25-$32 market whereas the allroad starts at an eye watering $42k (hence why the CPO deals are the best). The allroad should depart the US market within the year as the B9 A4 intros later this year and they runout inventory. I doubt we’ll see another one here after the current B8 model, but if we do it’s a good 2-3 years out.

      I suspect we’ll see the Golf Alltrack take the $25-$32 market and when the Passat Alltrack makes its way here it’ll take up the $28-$35 market.

  • avatar

    I know know… But I think it needs to be said… Hopefully a manual is available.

    Also what is the situation on the rear suspension? I was getting quite interested in the regular Sportwagen diesel, manual (honestly!) but then I learned that the AdBlue tank required to meet EPA diesel emissions has resulted in a torsion beam rear suspension in the diesel models. In Europe the diesels do not have AdBlue and thus get the independent rear.

    Ignore the VW fear for a bit and they’re SO CLOSE on this car… Their TDI fans buy a high percentage of manual cars, so they get it right on the Sportwagen but then you’re stuck with torsion beam. Then they add AWD which is an even bigger plus, and a diesel (no way!) but then no manual? Waiting on the suspension too.

    It’s really just so close to perfect.

    Too lazy atm to go search but are other Haldex VWs (such as the Golf R) DSG only also? Is there a reason this system simply doesn’t work with a manual box?

    • 0 avatar

      The 2015 US Golf R is DSG only. Manual transmission will be available in the 2016 Golf R.

    • 0 avatar

      There likely won’t be a TDI version of the Alltrack or even the 4motion (non-Alltrack) SportWagen in the US because of the AdBlue tank placement/rear suspension issue. The 4motion requires the multilink rear, which would require reengineering the AdBlue tank placement. For presumably the same reason, the A3 is only available with FWD as a TDI model in the U.S. market as well.

      • 0 avatar

        The AdBlue tank is only part of the equation, the other part of the equation is pricing and marketing: Combining a diesel with all wheel drive would add about $1k over the $2k+ premium for TDI.

        Also, VW and Audi have discovered that 99.9999% of TDI buyers are buying to minimize the number of trips to the pump, so adding all wheel drive pushes down the MPG numbers and increases the cost too much.

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