What is it?
The Volkswagen Golf SV, VW's replacement for the Golf Plus and a new model which we praised when we drove it on the continent earlier this year. Now it's a chance for this compact MPV to prove itself on British asphalt.
Transplanting the regular Golf's looks onto the SV, which stands for Sportsvan, has been successful, but the overall design remains conservative. That said, the SV appears practical from the outset; at 4338mm, it's only 83mm longer than the regular Mk7 Golf, but that extra length has been put to good use inside.
The boot comes with 500 litres of storage space with the back bench in place – compared to the regular car's 380 litres – and with the rear seats folded forwards a maximum load area of 1520 litres can be liberated. By comparison, the Golf SV's key rival, Ford's versatile C-Max, offers 471 litres with the rear seats up and 1723 litres with them down.
We tested an SE-specification model equipped with a 108bhp 1.6-litre TDI powerplant.
Our mid-spec model came with adaptive cruise control, folding tray tables, a trip computer, automatic headlights and wipers and VW's Driver Profile Selection system to the already well-equipped entry-level specification. That's all for £22,585, but the metallic paint added to our test car – the sole box ticked on the options list – took the total cost to £23,120.