VW Golf Sportwagen

Solid performance and fuel efficiency from VW

Although not a station wagon like the family-friendly vehicles that were so popular in the 1960s and ’70s, the Volkswagen Golf SportWagen can definitely be considered a by-product.

Like the station wagons back in the day, the SportWagen is quite the versatile vehicle. It can serve as a pretty fair people mover, offers terrific cargo space, delivers overall comfort, and comes at a reasonable price. Unlike the old station wagons, the SportWagen is very fuel efficient, offers solid performance, and possesses good road manners.

The 2019 Volkswagen Golf SportWagen arrived with a few changes, most notably adding front-wheel-drive models with a new turbo four-cylinder engine. But at its core, the SportWagen remains similar to the model that was introduced in 2015.

Vehicles with a penchant for utility are quite popular these days. People on the go love the storage and the versatility, whether it’s lugging around kids or a bunch of gear. Either way, vehicles like this are a valued commodity.

Although sport utility vehicles are still arguably the vehicle of choice as a hauler, don’t discount the compact wagons and hatchbacks as at least the next-best thing. Based off the Golf model, the SportWagen exterior has a little European flair with a long roof and upright, squared-off body, and is a foot longer than the VW Golf hatchbacks.

Trim Levels

Available in three trims (S, S 4Motion, and SE), the SportWagen shares both a suspension and engine with the Golf. The new front-wheel-drive models are equipped with a turbocharged 1.4-liter, four-cylinder that generates 147 horsepower and 184 pound-feet or torque. The other engine is a turbo 1.8-liter, four-cylinder that produces 168 horsepower and 199 pound-feet of torque. It’s rather peppy and capable of going 0-60 mph in 7.0 seconds.

2019 Volkswagen SportWagen

  • Performance: turbocharged 1.4-liter, four-cylinder, 147 horsepower; turbo 1.8-liter, four-cylinder, 170 horsepower
  • Mileage estimate: 29-37 mpg; 24-29 mpg
  • Price estimate: $22,100 to $31,100
  • Warranty: 6 years/72,000 miles; drivetrain: 6 years/72,000 miles; roadside assistance: 3 years/36,000; corrosion: 7 years/100,000

While not residing in the sporty category, the SportWagen won’t leave its driver bored with the overall performance and how it drives. It’s quick, responsive and has plenty of acceleration when needed in various driving situations. If you like shifting gears, the manual is recommended because it offers that fun factor we all love in our cars.

The SportWagen is firm and has a tight suspension that allows the car to handle well going around tight turns and navigating challenging, curvy roads.

Spacious Interior

What many car buyers will enjoy most about the SportWagen is the interior. It’s spacious in all the right places, especially in the cargo area that has the type of room that is better than many small SUVs. It provides 30.4 cubic-feet of cargo space and that more than doubles to 66.5 cubic-feet when the rear seat is folded down.

Front seat occupants have good leg and head room. Most rear seat passengers won’t mind sitting in the back, but long trips might be an issue for taller people. Volkswagen uses good, solid material throughout the SportWagen. The vehicle is on the modest side when it comes to technology, but we’re a fan of its smart dashboard layout.

Final Thoughts

Versatility is the 2019 SportWagen’s primary calling card, yet it has other enviable qualities that make it a good choice for car buyers.