Golf SV Review
20 August 2014
Neat switchgear, high-quality finishes and sound ergonomics reprise the standard Golf, but the controls are more democratically positioned, being less angled towards the hot seat. The driver’s hip-point is at least 59mm higher than in the hatchback, too, giving the driver a good view through the glass expanses while avoiding the feeling of being perched too high.
Door bins are generous front and rear, but cunning storage solutions are few. Mid-range trim brings drawers under the front seats but they’re small and awkward to access. Likewise, the rear seating lacks an innovative edge. The bench slides 180mm fore and aft and folds and reclines, all of which can be done as a whole or with a 60/40 split.
A top-spec C-Max’s rear seats additionally tumble forward or can be removed altogether, and its central seat can stow away to free up more room for the remaining tenants. The SV’s middle pew is both skinny and inhibited by the MQB’s fixed transmission tunnel.
All that said, head and leg room is excellent front and back, even with the rear bench in its mid-way setting. The boot has a flexible floor that can be set to various heights (including flush to the boot lip) and has flaps that smooth over the not-quite-flat floor when the seats are folded forward. The front passenger seat can optionally be foldable, too, creating a 2484mm-long space. The driving experience is classic Mk7 Golf fare: untaxing, comfortable and largely refined, with a decent helping of agility. Push on over snaking roads and the balance of body control and ride quality is well struck, while the latest-generation XDS electronic differential lock quietly trims your line using the brakes on both axles. Sharp ridges are more heard than felt at low speed, and a host of available safety kit, such as city brake assist and self-parking, simplify urban sorties. Motorway progress is rock-solid.