A nice ride, crisp handling and the solid feel make any Golf a good choice. The 2.5's engine lacks refinement and fuel economy is middling. The diesel TDI gets excellent fuel economy, but does not meet emissions regulations. Many of these TDI versions have been bought back by VW as part of a settlement with owners and the EPA.
    Alerts
    There are 5 recalls on this vehicle. Learn More.

    Overall Owner Satisfaction

    Consumer Reports’ Annual Owner Satisfaction Survey can improve the chances of finding a compatible car match. How? Our survey data reveals whether, all things considered, owners would buy the same car again. The answer to that question is what determines our owner-satisfaction rating, which is a powerful piece of intel because it predicts how well a particular model will satisfy other owners.

    Overall Owner Satisfaction

    Owner Satisfaction with:

    Driving Experience

    Includes acceleration and handling

    What Owners Say

    "Persistent problem of vibration, apparently due due wheel balance. Repeated efforts to balance have had mixed results. Latest report is that it needs two new wheels at cost of $800. This is a problem that has been there since I bought the car with 13000 km. Otherwise excellent car."

    NIGEL C., ON (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Handling is amazing, probably the best we've ever owned, including a 280Z!"

    ANDREW K., WA (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "The clutch pedal engages early in the travel and has lead to many stall-outs. That plus the hill holder has caused many more. I am glad that my wife doesn't suffer these problems! Otherwise it is a great car. Great seats. Great car. With the buy-out, we may replace it with a GTI."

    NEIL S., NY (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "acceleration handling better than most cars in this category. Not a sports car but pretty close"

    Anonymous, NY (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "I love the diesel engine, offering good power and good MPG. It's a shame that VW got itself into the mess and set back acceptance of diesel for many years. If VW had been honest to begin with (and advertised lower MPG or power), I still would have considered TDI because in my opinion no other car comes close. I will miss my TDI when I sell it back, but I'm glad that CU, FTC, and California Air Resource Board is making VW do the right compensation."

    Anonymous, CA (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "The TDI has amazing acceleration and great handling, cornering, braking etc."

    HABEEB A., ON (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Drives like a big go-kart! And this is a good thing!"

    MICHAEL S., OH (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Terrific acceleration and great fun to drive."

    ROSS W., WI (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Peppy, satisfactory manual transmission, easy to park."

    HARTE C., NH (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Steering is almost just mental telepathy."

    James W., TX (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Neat little sporty vehicle. No horsepower, but gobs of torque."

    Ira J., CA (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "The handling and acceleration is everything I could have asked for and, considering the mediocre tires it comes with, better than I would have expected. I've been totally happy with it."

    Anonymous, CA (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "plenty of acceleration and good handlint"

    Anonymous, IL (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "The 2.0l TDI engine may not be EPA compliant (yet) but it's a joy to drive. Great torque and acceleration combined with amazing mpg make this a winner. The Golf is super solid and handles like a GTI."

    Steven S., CA (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Good acceleration and handling, the shift points however could use a little tweeking. It has a lot of torque in each gear (it is a manual), so it is always pushing to shift early. i would prefer a bit more range."

    Anonymous, VT (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Very responsive, fast acceleration, nimble steering."

    Anonymous, OH (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "I installed a ram air intake, a Banks exhaust and a SteinBauer module - for better mpg and torque."

    Anonymous, FL (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Great acceleration. Short turning radius"

    Anonymous, QC (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "This cars handling is superb."

    Paul W., AZ (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "The car has excellent acceleration and handling. It is very responsive and fun to drive. It sounds great too."

    Janice D., NC (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Good steering feel and acceleration handles very well"

    Dennis M., MI (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "The VW Golf R handles very well like a more expensive car. The 2 liter turbo charged engine producing 256 horsepower (0 to 60 in 5.6 secs)+ is very good for the car’s size."

    William W., CA (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "drives like a sports car... with plenty of torque and secure winter road handling"

    Anonymous, VT (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "The Golf R is a sport car in a commuter car's costume. You can drive for smooth and comfort, or you can push it hard for a spirited drive."

    Anonymous, PA (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "The performance is amazing. Both acceleration and handling is impressive by any measure, and particularly nice for a car of this kind of size and utility."

    Henri H., CA (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Great little car for the price. Responsive, fun to drive and comfortable. Very roomy for a small car."

    Anonymous, MD (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "The car has a great engine that when pressed will really accelerate fast and it holds on in corners as well. Such fun to drive"

    Paul M., MA (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "It's just a pure pleasure to drive, always has enough torque to make quick lane changes and passing effortlessly with great mileage and handling to boot. Hope it stays that way now that I've had the TDI emissions modifications applied."

    Anonymous, OH (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Very responsive and a joy to drive with the 5-cylinder non-turbo engine."

    Anonymous, IL (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Quick and fun to drive."

    Osama H., WA (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    Comfort

    Includes seats, climate control, noise, and ride

    What Owners Say

    "I have taken very long trips & I was surprised at how comfortable the seats were at the end of a day's drive. I am 6'1" Ride - handling are great, quiet for this price car."

    FRANK B., MA (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Bought this vehicle for long drives, upgraded leather seats and passenger seat adjustments is with round lever to rotate, hard to do while driving on long drives."

    Anonymous, ON (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "The seats are very comfortable."

    NEIL S., NY (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "I have a serious back problem which worsens on certain seats. My father in laws 2006 Toyota would invariably hurt my back after half hour of driving it. I already knew how comfortable the seats of my 2006 Golf were (at least for me) and decided to go for the same type of car, just younger. I love my car"

    Anonymous, RI (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Incredibly comfortable seats and driving. Usually drive from Ontario to Cambridge, MA (950 kms or 10 hrs) without a backache or stiff muscles."

    HABEEB A., ON (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Too many noises. Poor fit and finish. Exterior paint is poor, many chips. Handling is pretty good for this car. Fairly fun to drive"

    Anonymous, NY (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Wife has a difficult time getting out of the front pass. seat."

    GARY C., CA (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Seats are good"

    EDWARD F., BC (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "I'm tall, and this car has plenty of room. Also, the controls are extremely straight-forward and easy to operate."

    HARTE C., NH (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Full seat controls on both driver and passenger seats, plus adjustable heated seatback and seat cushion. These were significantly better than any of the competition in this price range."

    ANDREW K., WA (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "comfortable for trips of less than two hours duration optional larger tires made a significant difference in overall ride quality and handling"

    Anonymous, IL (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "I'm not particularly wide bottomed, but I'm uncomfortable in the bucket seats. The car is not well-insulated from the road surface noise."

    Ira J., CA (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Seats are very uncomfortable for a bucket seat. The material is scratchy and just not comfortable to sit in."

    Anonymous, NV (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Deep cloth bucket seats with nice side bolsters and deep seating surface is really nice. Road noise is minimal."

    Steven S., CA (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Even with the window seals replaced it is a bit noisy when driving at highway speeds. It took 3 or 4 shop visit to get the window seal replaced. To VW's credit they covered it under warranty even though when it was finally replaced it was past the standard warranty term."

    Anonymous, OH (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "The Golf R can ride smoothly and comfortably.... and when you want to carve curves, brake hard and accelerate it is a fun car to drive."

    Anonymous, PA (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Seats are stylish, sturdy and comfortable. Wheel and controls are within easy reach. The ride is smooth and quiet."

    Henri H., CA (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    Value

    Did you get what you wanted relative to the price you paid?

    What Owners Say

    "VW deceived and defrauded diesel customers with the claims of "clean diesel" functions."

    Anonymous, CA (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "We feel this is by far the best vehicle overall at this price point. Rides and drives like a much more expensive car."

    MICHAEL S., OH (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Great fuel mileage, no mechanical issues of any kind"

    RON E., KS (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "A fun car with fair fuel economy but requires premium unleaded gasoline. Also, expensive to maintain and repair"

    Anonymous, IL (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "I purchased the car believing the extra cost for TDI diesel would result in higher resale and long term life. With the emissions scandal, I am now going to take the buyback and get a hybrid."

    Anonymous, CA (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "My Golf is involved with the VW buyback and if it weren't for that I would still love this car."

    Kathy S., CA (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    Styling

    How it looks inside and out

    What Owners Say

    "The interior feels very upscale."

    BRIAN D., MD (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    "Small size and well laid-out interior."

    ROSS W., WI (2013 Volkswagen Golf)

    Would you buy this car again?

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    Percentage of owners who would definitely purchase that same vehicle again. Owner-satisfaction Ratings are determined by the percentage of those who answered "definitely yes" to the question asked by the Consumer Reports Annual Auto Survey "Considering all factors (price, performance, reliability, comfort, enjoyment, etc.), would you get this car if you had to do it all over again?". If we don’t have sufficient data, a similar model might be used to form the owner-satisfaction score.
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