Flash Drive

2018 VW Golf SportWagen

Model Tested: 2018 Volkswagen Golf SportWagen TSI SE

The VW Gold SportWagen has a simple, but very tasteful styling and it’s a great size for city driving.

Engine:1.8-liter turbo I-4, 170-horsepower, 184 lb-ft torque

Transmission: 6-speed automatictransmission, front-wheel-drive

EPA Rating: 24-mpg city, 33-mpg highway, 28-mpg combined

Base Price: $27,320

As Tested: $28,215


Impressive fuel economy—our best was 36.2-mpg

The hatchback design makes the Golf SportWagen a very practical vehicle.

Good power

Paddle shifters

Smooth ride

City size maneuverability

Autonomous braking

Blind spot monitor

Rain sensing wipers with heated washer nozzles

Available all-wheel-drive


Great driver and front passenger

Front row space and comfort are excellent.

stretch-out legroom

Front seat almost contacts rear seats

Front seats need to be moved up for rear seat legroom

OK adult room if front seats are up

Good second row shoe room and headroom

Large rear floor hump

Comfy, supportive seats

Soft headrests

Soft, wide rear armrest

Quite warm heated front seats (3 temperatures)

The leather-wrapped steering wheel is nicely shaped and a pleasure to hold.

Manual lumbar adjustment lever both front seats

Medium thick, slightly contoured, flat bottom leather steering wheel

Good auxiliary controls

Easy to use HVAC knobs

Power panoramic sunroof; great interior light


Large cargo area

High opening hatch clears tall people

Big, wide opening; one-inch lip

The flat cargo deck and ample space behind the foldable rear seats make for a very practical vehicle.

Flat floor

Cargo loops

Split rear seats fold almost flat

Seat releases at hatch opening

Cargo tonneau cover

Large glovebox, but no lock

Very small console bin

Good size storage bin in front of shifter

Large front door bins

Medium rear door bins

Two medium vinyl seatback pouches

WOW Factors:

Impressive fuel economy

Great size; not too big or small

The VW Golf SportWagen is fun to drive in the city and out in the country. The handling and fuel economy are both excellent.

Agile, easy to maneuver

Excellent panoramic sunroof

Strong safety features


Small, cheap, hard plastic sun visors

Bottom Line:

The Volkswagen Golf SportWagen is a solid, very sensible car—and that’s a good thing. It’s pleasantly styled, but a little conservative. The interior is comfortable for four adults (five in a squeeze) with emphasis on the front row. Fuel economy is excellent and the handling/ride are great.