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GENEVA MOTOR SHOW - The Volkswagen Golf is hitting the Geneva Motor Show with a bang, with the hatchback model having just been named Europe's car of the year. Volkswagen is also shining the Geneva limelight on the new Golf Estate model, which has a really big boot to carry its hatch sibling's COTY trophy home.
South Africans only ever got to taste the fourth-generation Golf Estate and the status quo will continue with the seventh-generation as our contact at VWSA says the new car you see here is not planned for our market "at this stage".
As with its hatch sibling, the new Estate is lighter than its predecessor (105kg in this case) thanks to its use of the all-new modular MQB platform.
Despite this, the new Golf Estate is even more practical, with normal boot space having increased from 505 litres to 605 litres, while total cargo volume (with the rear seats folded) is up from 1495 litres to 1620 litres.
Measuring 4562mm, the Estate is 307mm longer than its hatchback counterpart, but it's much the same under the bonnet, offering a modern range of TSI turbopetrol and TDI turbodiesel engines. VW is also offering a 4Motion all-wheel drive version of the Estate for those frosty markets in Europe.
CAR OF THE YEAR
As mentioned earlier, the Golf hatchback has won the European Car of the Year competition for its "outstanding achievements in safety, fuel efficiency, dynamics and comfort."
The panel of 58 motoring journalists gave it 414 points, putting it well ahead of its nearest rivals in the competition, namely the Toyota 86 - which got 202 points - and the Volvo V40, which garnered 189 points.