Already shown in sketch form (pictured above) – “close to what you are going to see,” said Welsch – the interior is devoid of classic cockpit cues, removing most of the instruments and instead using two 10.0in screens, as well as a head-up display.
“There are not too many buttons. We have voice control,” said Welsch. “All the things we have create a better atmosphere. There are ambient lights all the colours of the rainbow! People love this stuff. It’s like the new chrome.”
Although the interior design is notably different from the ID 3’s, the idea of simplification is the same and connectivity features, such as over-the-air upgrades, will also be echoed.
One key focus is driving assistance systems intended to offer the utmost in comfort and safety. Welsch said: “Golf, let’s say, is lower-middle class, and we’re bringing things from the upper class. There are also car-to-car and car-to-X communication systems.” The new model is expected to add more self-driving capability and features such as Area View, which feed live images from the car into the cockpit.
There will not be a three-door Golf, with VW choosing to focus on the five-door and estate variants as it streamlines its range in a bid to maximise cost efficiencies and profits. The estate will have a 50mm-longer wheelbase and longer rear overhang than the hatchback.
Jürgen Stackmann, VW board member for sales and marketing, said: “Golf has been holding very strong, keeping its position as uncontested number one in Europe for many years. And even in run-out, it remains a very strong seller and our job is to keep it [at the top] in segment share.”
He added: “The next generation will bring all of the technology and all of the advancements that is necessary to keep that position. Obviously, it will be the best Golf of all Golfs. In its class, it will have the best CO2, the best technology, the best digital footprint.”
Following the recent launch of the ID 3, Stackmann doesn’t see a risk of cannibalisation of sales, for now. “If you look into the mindset of who’s buying Golf and for what reason, they want the same as before,” he said. “They love Golf for what it is. They love technology but they don’t go wild. In the long term, in maybe six or eight years, we will start to see crossover between Golf and ID 3 customers.”
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