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2015 VOLKSWAGEN GOLF

Exceptional fuel economy is standard on the 2015 Volkswagen Golf TDI.

German automotive giant Volkswagen has sold more than 30 million Golf models worldwide since introduced as the 'Rabbit' in 1974.

Golf sales now surpass the iconic Volkswagen (VW) Beetle as the brand’s best selling model of all time.

The 2015 VW Golf is packaged in TSI or TDI front-drive four-door hatchback body styles shipped in S, SE and SEL trim levels.

A special TSI Launch Edition arrives with limited availability priced at $17,995.

Golf TSI comes with a turbocharged 1.8-liter 4-cylinder gasoline engine that generates 170 horsepower, while the TDI is powered by a turbo diesel 2.0L 4-cylinder engine rated at 150 hp.

A 5-speed manual or 6-speed automatic transmission manages the TSI engine to yield 26 miles per gallon/city and 37 mpg/highway when equipped with a manual gearbox.

An automatic drops TSI’s highway mileage to 36 mpg.

But the Golf TDI ups the mileage ante with a 6-speed manual for 31 mpg/city and 42 mpg/hwy. With an automatic, 31/43 is achieved respectively.

Volkswagen recently dropped off a 2015 Golf TDI dressed in SEL attire for evaluation.

Golf’s seventh-generation styling is contemporary with a youthful demeanor that will keep the model’s legacy alive for decades.

The 2015 VW Golf casts a shadow over two inches longer and slightly wider than its predecessor to provide greater interior space and better handling.

With room for five occupants, VW Golf carries through as a practical people mover providing cargo capacity of 22.8 cubic feet behind the rear seat.

Folding the 60/40 split-back bench flat expands the storage volume to 52.7 cu-ft.

Golf’s 2.0L turbo diesel generates 236 pound feet of torque for spirited sprints off the line - though rather leisurely until the turbo kicks in.

The turbo boost makes the VW Golf TDI fun to drive, but at the sacrifice of mileage. My real-world combined fuel economy fell short of expected at 35 mpg.

Ride quality is compliant with a soft suspension that leans slightly sporty when pushed into corners.

Heated front seats offer vertical height adjustments to accommodate occupants of six-foot stature with no loss of legroom to back seat riders.

A rearview camera is standard on SEL models as is a power-sliding panoramic sunroof that adds an airy feel to the driving experience.

Base cost for the 2015 Volkswagen Golf TDI SEL opens at $30,315 with freight.

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