Volkswagen Golf R Estate review - Ultimate Golf gets more practical - Volkswagen Golf R Estate prices, specs and rivals

Just the right blend of fun and functionality

Evo rating
Price
from £34,455
  • Broad range of abilities, practicality and performance, build quality
  • Affordable competitors nearly as good

Prices, Specs and Rivals

The VW Golf R Estate starts at £34,455. That’s only £700 more than a DSG-equipped five-door Golf R hatch. For some, it’ll be a no brainer. Boot capacity jumps up from 308 litres to 605, putting the load capacity directly in line with the likes of a Skoda Octavia vRS Estate.

Adaptive cruise control comes as standard as does the ‘front assist with city emergency braking’ system that helps prevent low speed collisions. Also included are parking sensors front and rear, bi-xenon headlights with LED daytime running lights and, of course, the special R-styling pack unique to the Golf R Estate.

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Sat nav consists of either the Discover Media or Discover Pro system, the latter brings a bigger display and one of the best, most easy to use nav systems currently on the market. 

Wheels consist of 18-inch ‘Cadiz’ offerings as standard or optional 19-inch ‘Pretoria’ wheels for £895. The Lapiz blue metallic paint you see most Golf Rs specced in is £610.

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Competition is strong in this section of the market. A Ford Focus ST estate is an entertaining option, with enough power and torque to trouble the front tyres (there's no all-wheel drive version - sadly, you can't buy a Focus RS Estate) and an available manual gearbox. Both build quality and dynamic ability are less accomplished than those of the Golf, but it's a fun option. Then there is the potent yet practical Skoda Octavia vRS estate, again an affordable alternative.

Closest of all to the Golf R is SEAT's Leon ST Cupra 300, which pretty much matches the Golf R Estate's features on all fronts. It develops the same power, sends that power to all four wheels, and offers a DSG transmission only. What's odd is that you don't really get the typical SEAT savings if you opt for this model over the VW - at £34,170 it's a scant £285 cheaper than the Golf.

It looks good but doesn't really shout about its performance credentials (even less so than the Golf R, really) and you'll probably lose out come trade-in time, as SEAT's residuals aren't quite as cast-iron as those of Volkswagen. The Leon's cabin isn't quite as high-quality either.

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