Wolfsburg - Volkswagen on Friday confirmed that production of its eighth-generation Golf would commence in 75 weeks from now, which would mean the last day of June 2019.
While not going into much detail on the next iteration of its staple hatchback, VW’s head of compact cars Karlheinz Hell promised that it will be at the cutting edge of cabin digitalisation:
"The next Golf will take Volkswagen into the era of fully connected vehicles with extended autonomous driving functions.
“It will have more software on board than ever before. It will always be online and its digital cockpit and assistance systems will be the benchmark in terms of connectivity and safety."
This not only implies that a raft of semi-autonomous driving technologies will filter down from larger vehicles in the group, but that a new generation of digital dashboard will debut on the hatchback. This could see the digital instrument cluster and central infotainment systems integrated into one unit with plenty of smart apps.
VW’s design head Klaus Bischoff recently told Auto Express that the entire cabin layout required a rethink. “It’s really a total digital environment,” he told the UK publication, “the only analogue aspect is basically the steering wheel”.
VW has yet to confirm anything about the underpinnings or powertrains, but it is all but inevitable that the new Golf will continue to be built on the MQB platform, while the latest 1-litre TSI and 1.5 Evo TSI petrol engines should form the mainstay of the range.
You can also expect more hybrid and electric options in the range, with 48-volt ‘mild hybrids’ likely to feature prominently among the lower reaches of the line-up, and plug-in and full-electric models at the upper end.
The exterior design, if history is anything to go by, will almost certainly be evolutionary:
Together with the upcoming I.D family of compact electric cars, the next-gen Golf will be the most strategically important product for the brand going into the future, while the Wolfsburg plant in Germany will continue to be the main production hub.