Engine and Transmission
The Golf R Estate uses a turbocharged 2-litre four-cylinder engine which, like most of the current mega-hatch crop, delivers plenty of performance but not that much personality.
VW has done a good job disguising some of this via the clever sound symposer, which actually delivers a more convincing engine note than most of the competition. You also get a fantastically over the top ‘brrp’ from the exhaust on upshifts which rattles nicely down the longer estate cabin.
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The powertrain does feel strong. It boasts a smooth and linear performance with just the right amount of turbocharged shove yet all the refinement you’d expect in a Golf. When you're cruising it's as quiet as any other Golf, but there's always a hit of power waiting for whenever you need it.
As for the DSG transmission, which is the only option on the Estate, it’s as quick as you’d ever need an auto to be. Smooth about town, it’ll still fire through the shifts as quick as any of them when you’re using the paddles.
It also feels a touch more at home in the Estate, bringing another level of practicality to the car that most will likely be after.