Recall Alert: 2015 Volkswagen Golf, GTI

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Vehicles Affected: More than 2,000 model-year 2015 Volkswagen Golf and GTI hatchbacks manufactured between Jan. 27, 2014, and May 12, 2014

The Problem: The stabilizer link fasteners may come loose and possibly interfere with steering, requiring additional effort to control the vehicle and increasing the risk of a crash. Volkswagen earlier this month issued a stop sale order to dealers on the 2015 Golf and GTI due to the stabilizer link fastener issue, covering about 700 vehicles in dealer inventory; the automaker said no accidents or injuries related to this problem have been reported.

The Fix: Volkswagen will begin notifying owners this month, and dealers will replace the front stabilizer links for free.

What Owners Should Do: Owners can call Volkswagen at 800-822-8987, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's vehicle-safety hotline at 888-327-4236 or go to www.safercar.gov for more info.

Need to Find a Dealer for Service? Go to Cars.com Service & Repair to find your local dealer.

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By Matt Schmitz | July 24, 2014 | Comments (1)

Volkswagen Issues Stop Sale Order for 2015 Golf, GTI

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Volkswagen's redesigned compact hatchback just went on sale, but dealers are being told to hold inventory until a safety defect is addressed. VW issued a stop sale order for the 2015 GTI and Golf in the U.S. because of an issue with the front stabilizer link fasteners. In the affected vehicles they were installed with too little torque and could come loose, increasing the risk of a crash. 

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VW spokeswoman Jeannine Ginivan said about 700 vehicles in dealer inventory are affected, and the automaker is in contact with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration regarding a recall to cover the vehicles already sold. Ginivan also said that no accidents or injuries have been reported related to this problem. Most of the affected vehicles are GTIs; the new Golf officially goes on sale in the U.S. next month.

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By Jennifer Geiger | July 10, 2014 | Comments (7)

Cars.com's Top 10 Fun-to-Drive Fuel Sippers

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When I was 10, my dad set me and a go-kart loose in an abandoned parking lot, free to zip around the blacktop. At that age, you don't give a thought to how much gas costs; it's all about the fun. At this age, however, fuel economy is a big consideration when it comes to buying a car, but it doesn't have to trump the fun-to-drive factor.

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There are plenty of cars that offer both fun and fuel savings, from affordable subcompacts and gas-electric hybrids to pricier luxury cars and diesel-powered vehicles. To qualify for this list, a car has to have an EPA combined rating of 30 mpg, while bringing out the inner go-kart-loving kid in all of us:

By Jennifer Geiger | June 9, 2014 | Comments (8)

2015 Volkswagen Golf, GTI Named IIHS Top Safety Pick Plus

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Volkswagen redesigned its Golf and related GTI hatchbacks for 2015, and aside from lower prices and more standard equipment, drivers can also expect a safer car according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. 

2015 Volkswagen Golf, Golf TDI: First Drive

The agency awarded both compact hatchbacks its top honor, the Top Safety Pick Plus award, for earning good scores in all areas of testing, including the small front overlap test. This test, which is proving difficult for automakers to master, simulates a crash in which 25 percent of a vehicle's driver's side front end strikes a rigid barrier at 40 mph.

"The driver's space was maintained well and injury measures recorded on the dummy indicate a low risk of any significant injuries in a crash of this severity. While the dummy's head nearly slid off the left side of the airbag, the side curtain airbag deployed to protect the head from contacting side structure and outside objects," IIHS said in a statement.

By Jennifer Geiger | June 3, 2014 | Comments (5)

2015 Volkswagen Golf, Golf TDI: First Drive

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Volkswagen has a problem. The idea of a premium compact hatchback isn't top of mind with consumers, and its venerable Golf needs to attract a new audience to help sales in the U.S.

2015 Volkswagen Golf Starts at $18,815

Thanks to a lower price and more of the standard equipment shoppers expect these days, the 2015 Golf has a chance to rebound in a big way. After driving manual and automatic versions of both the basic Golf, called the TSI, and the diesel-powered TDI, it seems driving fun is also in the mix.

By David Thomas | May 20, 2014 | Comments (9)

2015 Volkswagen Golf Starts at $18,815

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Volkswagen today announced pricing for the redesigned-for-2015 Golf. The seventh-generation of the hatchback will start at $18,815, including an $820 destination charge — $2,000 less than the 2014 version. The 2015 model's starting price is for the limited-availability two-door Golf Launch Edition with a five-speed manual transmission. Volkswagen says all of the eight available trim levels offer more standard equipment and better interior space than outgoing models. The longer, wider, lower and lighter 2015 Golf is expected to arrive at dealerships in August.

2015 Volkswagen Golf and GTI at the 2013 New York Auto Show

Two new powertrains will be available; both use turbocharged, direct-injected four-cylinder engines — one gas and one diesel. Golf versions with the 1.8-liter gas engine are mated to either a five-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission, and will be available in five trim levels. The 2.0-liter TDI version pairs with either a six-speed manual or a dual-clutch automatic transmission, and will be offered in three trims. Volkswagen says interior space in the new model is up slightly, and the automaker claims the Golf now offers more trunk space than any midsize sedan in the U.S. Newly available safety equipment includes forward collision warning and VW's Automatic Post-Collision Braking System.

By Matt Schmitz | May 12, 2014 | Comments (0)

2015 Volkswagen Golf SportWagen: Up Close

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Let's get this out of the way: The Golf SportWagen you see here is an R-Line sport version with a diesel engine, manual transmission and all-wheel drive that's only a concept at the moment. It's an attention-grabbing debut sure to entice wagon lovers with its dream-team powertrain combined with the sporty R Package.

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The striking blue exterior combined with a low stance and multispoke wheels set off the long, sleek exterior as much more proportional and attractive than the outgoing Jetta SportWagen. The Golf SportWagen goes on sale in early 2015 with less flash than the concept, but not any less usability considering it's longer and wider than the outgoing Jetta with more passenger and cargo room.

By Joe Bruzek | April 25, 2014 | Comments (2)

Volkswagen Prices 2015 GTI

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The seventh generation of the Volkswagen Golf hatchback's performance variant — the Golf GTI — will go on sale in June for the 2015 model year starting at $25,215, including an $820 destination charge. That's only around $200 more than the previous generation's starting price for what the German automaker promises will be a bigger, roomier, faster, lighter and more fuel-efficient car with upgraded standard features. We first got a glimpse of both the 2015 Golf and GTI last year at the 2013 New York International Auto Show.

2015 Volkswagen Golf and GTI at the 2013 New York Auto Show

That starting price is for the entry-level S trim two-door with a six-speed manual transmission mated to a turbocharged, direct-injected engine good for 210 horsepower and 258 pounds-feet of torque, up 10 hp and 51 pounds-feet, respectively. New standard features include driving-mode select, VW Car-Net connected services, touch-screen radio, a leather-wrapped multifunction steering wheel, ambient and footwell lighting with LED reading lights and LED fog lights.

By Matt Schmitz | April 16, 2014 | Comments (0)

2015 Volkswagen Golf SportWagen: First Look

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Competes with: Honda CR-V, Subaru Outback, Ford C-Max Hybrid

Looks like: A more chiseled, carlike wagon

Drivetrain: 170-horsepower, 1.8-liter turbocharged gasoline four-cylinder with five-speed manual and six-speed automatic transmission; 150-hp, 2.0-liter turbocharged diesel four-cylinder with six-speed manual or dual-clutch automatic transmissions

Hits dealerships: Early 2015

Say goodbye to Volkswagen's Jetta SportWagen and hello to the 2015 Golf SportWagen taking the Jetta's place as one of the few dedicated station wagons competing against an entire segment of compact SUVs. The new wagon will make its North American debut at the 2014 New York International Auto Show.

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Volkswagen's replacement sits on the new 2015 Golf platform to offer increased interior and cargo volume compared to the outgoing Jetta wagon. The Golf wagon is longer, wider and also lighter, more fuel efficient and still available in a diesel TDI version — with a new, more powerful engine — while a new turbocharged four-cylinder gasoline engine improves fuel economy up to 17 percent.

This wagon is definitely firing on all cylinders. Icing on the cake for the New York Auto Show is that Volkswagen is showing off a TDI wagon concept with all-wheel drive, a configuration that readers have been asking about for some time.

By Joe Bruzek | April 11, 2014 | Comments (30)

More Electric Cars Than Ever, Still Not Available Everywhere

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As more manufacturers introduce electric cars, these battery-powered vehicles are becoming something people see on the road every day. At least in some parts of the country, they are.

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The number of purely electric vehicles offered in the U.S. will grow to a dozen by the end of this year. Many of those EVs are available only in a small number of states, however, with California being the epicenter of electric-car sales.

By Rick Popely | March 11, 2014 | Comments (1)

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