After the diesel scandal, Volkswagen has had to carefully rethink its future strategy in the US market. The scandal saw sales of VW products plummet. However, the automaker has already set in motion a strategy to rise up again from the scandal and strive to achieve its aim of becoming the largest automaker in the globe. Volkswagen has in fact invested $7 billion in the North America market to run up to 2019. This investment seeks to fund development of a VW SUV, a segment VW has always missed out. In addition to the SUV, VW will also offer other new products. One such product is the new 2017 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack.
Despite VW group selling more diverse models in the US market across its Audi, VW, Bentley, Porsche and Lamborghini brands, Subaru still has a bigger market share than Volkswagen. The automaker as such wants to offer a lineup of new crossovers and wagons targeted to the family buyers where Subaru largely operates. The new Volkswagen AllTrack is one such model that will take the battle straight to Subaru’s Crosstrek and Outback models. Read along to find out more:
2017 Volkswagen Golf AllTrack Exterior
The AllTrack is based on the Sportwagen and in fact resembles the latter in many fronts. However, the AllTrack looks more muscular than the standard Sportwagen. It stretches 0.6 inches longer and has a better ground clearance of 6.9 inches compared to the Sportwagen’s 5.5 inches.
The AllTrack also features revamped bumpers, a new honeycomb grille flanked by revised headlights as well as a sharp matte-looking aluminum radiator crossbar. The vehicle also features a gray plastic cladding on the lower skirt. VW has also hooked up the vehicle with silver mirrors and roof rails. The rear, on the other hand looks almost identical to the Sportwagen. Completing the exterior revamp is a set of 17-inch aluminum wheels.
Overall, the Alltrack looks more appealing than the Sportwagen and most of all it has beaten the Subaru Outback and Crosstrek on the looks front, a factor that could help it snatch more customers from the grip of Subaru in the North American market.
2017 Volkswagen Golf AllTrack Interior
Inside, the AllTrack is almost identical to the Sportwagen. To start with, the model comes with the MIB II infotainment system, which comes with a 6.5-inch display as standard on all trim levels. As for the upholstery, the AllTrack feature quality fabrics on the lower trims and leather on the upper trim.
The model offers 94.3 cubic feet of passenger space just like the standard Sportwagen. However, tall passengers will find the rear a bit cramped. In terms of cargo space, the model offers 30.4 cubic feet, which expands to 66.5 cubic feet when the rear seats are folded. Other standard features include heated front seats and a cooled glove box. Higher trims add a gigantic panoramic sunroof, a Fender premium audio system, a navigation system, power front seats and automatic headlights.
The models also feature Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. For safety, VW also offers the model with an optional Driver Assistance Package that features autonomous braking, blind spot monitoring, parking assist, forward collision warning and rear cross traffic alert among others.
Engine Specs and performance
Well, many enthusiasts will point fingers at the ‘AllTrack’s” lack of a complimenting power hike to go with the additional off road potential. The model comes with a sole turbocharged 1.8 L, 4-cylinder mill capable of 170 hp and 199lb-ft of torque. The automaker is quick to point out that maximum torque is available from only 1,600 rpm.
The mill mates to the automaker’s DSG automatic transmission system. The new model is EPA rated at 22 mpg in city and 30 mpg on highway drives. It is less economical compared to the Sportwagen because it is 300 pounds heavier. The system is controlled via paddle shifters mounted on the steering wheel. This is particularly important when overtaking at high speeds on highways. A 6-speed manual gearbox is also on offer.
To tackle the off roads, the model comes with the automaker’s 5th generation 4Motion AWD system as standard. It also sits 0.6 inches higher compared to the standard Sportwagen. In addition, VW has hooked up the AllTrack with an Off Road driving mode as well as a hill descent feature. This was made possible by upgrading the ABS system and traction control, which helped enhance its grip in off road terrain. It also features fender cladding on all its four corners.
Price and release date
VW has competitively priced the Golf AllTrack to sway buyers away from Subaru. The base S trim has an MSRP of $27,770 inclusive of destination charges; around $1,300 more than the Subaru Outback. The top-of-the-range SEL trim will fetch as much as $33,710. The models will be available in dealer showrooms starting next month (October 2016).