HERNDON, VA -- (Marketwired) -- 04/11/14 --
- Iconic Golf GTI® will be the first seventh-generation Golf model available in the U.S.
- All Golf models are more refined, roomier, and better equipped than outgoing models
- Seventh-generation model expected to reach dealers in June
Volkswagen of America, Inc. announced today that the all-new, seventh generation of the brand's iconic Golf GTI was honored by the WardsAuto editors as part of its annual "Ward's 10 Best Interiors" list for 2014. The WardsAuto editors tested more than 40 vehicles and recognized the refined, upscale, and functional new interior of the Golf GTI, which is completely redesigned and scheduled to arrive in dealer showrooms in June. The Golf 1.8T and TDI Clean Diesel models will go on sale shortly afterwards.
"The seventh-generation Golf GTI uniquely captures the enthusiast heritage and DNA of the brand while artfully incorporating functional elements and user friendly technology," said Joerg Sommer, Vice President, Product Marketing and Strategy, Volkswagen of America. "The refined GTI uses premium materials, world-class design, and innovation at a value that's hard to match. This honor from the WardsAuto team reinforces Volkswagen's design leadership and underscores the brand's ongoing commitment to quality."
"The Volkswagen GTI represents the pinnacle of the seventh-generation Golf family going on sale this year in the U.S., and the interior demonstrates VW's desire to execute well-equipped, sporty cabins that don't break the bank," said Tom Murphy, WardsAuto World executive editor. "The GTI interior does a lot of things really well: Seat bolsters are firm and supportive, matte-finish metallic accents are handsome and warm, the electronics are helpful and easy to navigate and the red stitching really pops. And we're glad the plaid seats are still available. The GTI makes great interiors look easy."
As with previous generations, the all-new GTI has a number of unique interior treatments compared to the rest of the Golf family. The car offers classic GTI features such as a sport steering wheel, GTI shift knob grip and instrument cluster, special trim inserts, and stainless-steel pedals and foot rest. The Golf GTI also features sport seats that are covered with distinctive plaid seating surfaces in the S trim and leather on the SE and Autobahn models.
All seventh-generation Golf models will feature a larger interior, despite the car having a lower roofline. The interior is now 0.6 inches longer, which is reflected in 0.6 inches more rear-seat legroom. In front, the shoulder and elbow room were increased by 1.2 and 0.9 inches, with commensurate improvements in the back by 1.2 and 0.8 inches. The cargo capacity is nearly 30 percent greater than the outgoing car's and the floor of the cargo area can be lowered to further increased stowage space. The Golf offers room for five adults and more cargo capacity than any midsize sedan.
Every element of the interior has been redeveloped and redesigned. The wide center console is now oriented towards the driver, a feature that's more typical of premium vehicles rather than compacts. In the middle of the console, beneath the hazard warning light switch, is the infotainment screen. For the first time, Volkswagen is using touchscreens with a proximity sensor, allowing users to change functions with a swipe of the hand, just like a smartphone. All Golf models receive a standard 5.8-inche touchscreen. The available new navigation systems are DVD-based with a 3D display.
Located beneath the infotainment module are simple, well laid-out controls for the climate control system. Beneath it, the lower section of the center console has a stowage compartment that integrates the Media Device Interface and iPod® cable. In addition to new technology, the entire interior is finished in high-quality materials. Soft-touch plastics are utilized, along with chrome and aluminum exuding a premium and athletic look and feel.
Similar to Ward's 10 Best Engines, WardsAuto editors evaluate eligible vehicles by experiencing each during their daily commutes. Forty-one vehicles were evaluated with special attention paid to interior fit-and-finish, material quality and layout, functionality and space, ergonomics, visibility, technology interfaces and available content, aesthetics, and design harmony. Interiors that raise the bar for their brand and respective segments are of particular interest. Eligible vehicles must feature new or significantly enhanced interiors.
This year's Ward's 10 Best Interiors award recipients will be honored at the WardsAuto Interiors Conference on May 21at The Henry Hotel in Dearborn, Michigan. Profiles of the winning interiors, including the GTI, will begin appearing April 21 at www.WardsAuto.com and will be featured in the May issue of WardsAuto World digital magazine.
About Volkswagen of America, Inc.
Founded in 1955, Volkswagen of America, Inc., an operating unit of Volkswagen Group of America, Inc. (VWoA) is headquartered in Herndon, Virginia. It is a subsidiary of Volkswagen AG, headquartered in Wolfsburg, Germany. VWoA's operations in the United States include research and development, parts and vehicle processing, parts distribution centers, sales, marketing and service offices, financial service centers, and its state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The Volkswagen Group is one of the world's largest producers of passenger cars and Europe's largest automaker. VWoA sells the Beetle, Beetle Convertible, Eos, Golf, GTI, Jetta, Jetta SportWagen, Passat, CC, Tiguan, and Touareg vehicles through approximately 630 independent U.S. dealers.
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