By on October 10, 2019

The Volkswagen Golf has been a mainstay on the compact car scene since approximately the dawn of time, ringing up sales on multiple continents and introducing a world of new drivers to the sweet taste of freedom. They say if you line up all the Golfs ever produced, you’d create a line of cars from here to Deep Space Nine, or something like that.

Later this month, a new version will appear in Wolfsburg. Set to be the models’ eighth generation, it’ll cut a new shape while still being immediately recognizable as a Golf. Today, Volkswagen released a few sketches of the new car for the world to peruse.

There’s little doubt the car you’re looking at is a Golf, shaped as it is with a truncated roofline and bulbous snout. A fast and sharp character line creases the metal just below its beltline, a styling flourish your author hopes will make it to production. Those headlights and badge placement evoke the design language currently in use on the Arteon coupe/sedan thing.

One item that surely won’t make it to production are those enormous wheels, a set of bling that looks great in sketches and on the show floor but are generally cut by flinty-eyed accountants in the real world. Expect the nubbin of black ahead of the front doors to stick around, though, as it is a family styling feature currently cropping up on just about everything with a VW badge. The rear spoiler, sticking out like a spoilt child’s bottom lip, will stay on certain trims as well.

Unsurprisingly, the interior render shows what appears to be an infotainment screen standing at attention atop the dashboard. There also seems to be some sort of auxiliary screen or bank of buttons to the gauge pod’s immediate left. In what is surely an illusion of optics, the gearshift lever seems to have moved off the floor and is now protruding from the centre stack, not unlike that on an old Alfa Romeo Spider.

No official word exists on the planned appearance of GTI or R models, variants that will surely follow in due process to maintain customer interest over the life cycle of the car. Speaking of the GTI, your author was interested to learn that if you enjoy the GTI’s plaid seats and golf ball shifter knob (as I do), then we have a person named Gunhild Liljequist to thank.

Hired by the company in 1964, she was tasked with designing various elements of the original GTI’s interior through a sporty lens. The tartan seat pattern was inspired by her travel around Great Britain and desire to inject a bit of color into the GTI’s cabin. The idea was said to have met with resistance but Liljequist and the team pushed through, a decision for which generations of GTI-heads should be eternally thankful.

As for the golf ball gear knob, “That was a completely spontaneous idea!” Liljequist said. “I just expressed my sporting and golf associations out loud: ‘how about a golf ball as the gear knob?’” The rest, as they say, is history.

The latest generation of the Golf is due to enter the first markets, meaning those across the pond, in December.


[Images: Volkswagen]

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18 Comments on “Sketchy Stuff: VW Shows Images of Mk8 Golf...”

  • avatar
    Thomas Kreutzer

    That interior picture takes my breath away. Mostly because it makes me feel like I’m behind the wheel at the bottom of a lake…

  • avatar

    Does anyone actually like gloss black plastic all over the console and around gauges? Its distracting reflections and/or fingerprints and dust forever.

    • 0 avatar

      As a guy who details cars (hobby enthusiast and side job), no! I wish this was one design trend that would die a quick death. I can deep clean an interior and come back to the car in 30 minutes and see dust particles already collecting on the piano black surfaces. Ugh…

  • avatar

    Don’t worry by the time the production version arrives it will look like the usual bread box with wheels.

  • avatar

    People are already freaking out from the leaked images, saying they hate the new Golf, but that happens with EVERY generation, then we see it in the flesh, see that it’s just iterative changes, and all is well. I expect the same this time around. What DOES alarm me is the interior shots I’ve seen, including the floating iPad-stuck-to-the-dash crappy infotainment screen setup. Can’t this awful trend just DIE?

    @heliotropic – I’m with you, “piano black” trim is another thing that needed to die a long time ago. It’s a fancy way of saying “cheap glossy plastic”, and in black it just attracts fingerprints & dust like nobody’s business. Get rid of it!

  • avatar

    In case anyone’s interested in what the car really will look like…

    Looks just like the old one.

    • 0 avatar

      When Golfs are in their early planning stages, ‘artists conceptions’ of them always look like far-out jellybeans on wheels. When they hit prototype stage, you have to be in the business or a serious fan to tell what’s different from the current one.

  • avatar

    So glad to hear that unlike the USA, Canada will get the full Golf Mark VIII hatch line-up, but sad to hear we will lose the wagon as well.

  • avatar

    Tons of spy pics out there. Does not look as radical as the rendering, and doesn’t look that much different from Mk7 at all. I’m still contemplating an end of the run Mk7 Golf/GTI. No other hatchbacks on the market check all my boxes (to be fair, Golf doesn’t either but hits the most of them).

  • avatar

    Plus currently you get the 6yr 72k mile warranty.

  • avatar

    I suspect this rendering resembles the actual car about as much as the old “Wide Track” brochure cars of the 1950s and 1960s resembled actual Pontiacs. Those illustrations literally took a large portion of the car’s height and applied it to the length and width in the illustration, resulting in a weird fantasy car that looked absolutely nothing like the real thing.

    • 0 avatar


      That exact Pontiac “wide-track” picture, with the dotted lines where the wheels “used” to be…

      When I see certain Ford F-Series trucks at the right distance from the rear on the interstate (maybe 11th or 12th gen and it may be more pronounced on 4WD models?) I am reminded of that picture because the Ford pickup looks exactly like the Pontiac picture but in reverse – like the wheels have been pulled in (looks almost “tippy” – partly because of the height increase I think). It always makes me think of John DeLorean.

  • avatar

    I like interior, very modern nordic. I wish only they projected something on the windshield. Otherwise it feel like you are driving blind or, yes, on the bottom of the lake. What R means anyway? Retro?

  • avatar
    Mike Beranek

    Wow, a DS9 reference! Exactly how many Golfs would have to be lined up to get to Bajor? Ask the Prophets.

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