Of course the new 2013 Mk7 Volkswagen Golf has an interior that is evolutionary in its design. You might as well keep your fingers crossed for the sun to rise in the west as hope for Volkswagen’s huge-selling Golf to receive a radical overhaul either inside or out.
But the entirely new interior does have a substantially more premium feel to it. It’s this that strikes you most as you sit behind the new, slightly smaller, flat-bottomed steering wheel. It’s not all that far off the Audi A3 for sheer high-end ambience and sumptuousness in the admittedly high-specification car that we sat in, coming with the full eight-inch colour touchscreen, leather upholstery and all the toys.
Don’t fear for the base car, though. Tomasz Bachorski, head of interior design on the seventh-generation Golf, is adamant that the base car’s interior has benefited just as much from the design revisions as the top-spec car. “It retains lots of important touches, including the piano black strip on the dash,” he said. “An entry Mk7 Golf should feel equally improved over the Mk6 as the top-spec cars.”
The dials and basic cabin architecture are still recognisable, but there’s noticeably more elbow room thanks to the wider cabin, the dials are crisper and the switchgear, which is now a touch smaller and has softer edges, has become subtler. You could argue that it’s less ergonomic — particularly when it comes to the cluster of switchgear on the steering wheel — but if a brief sit in the driver’s seat is anything to go by, the Golf has all the trappings of being a substantially more premium prospect than ever before.