The eighth-generation VW Golf has been spotted several times lately in South Africa and Germany, seemingly without camouflage.
However, those prototypes were wearing some clever disguise material around sensitive areas of the bodywork, such as the headlights and taillights. Now, we get the first professional spy shots of the 2020 Golf courtesy of our photographers who caught the compact car undergoing cold weather testing in northern Europe.
As you can see, the Germany-registered prototype features a complete camouflage package that leaves only the light units, the windshield, and the front lateral windows uncovered.
You’re looking at the final body with the production headlights and taillights
However, it’s pretty clear that those are the final production headlights and taillights. Though partly covered by tape, their outline is clearly visible, as are their LED signatures. As always, those who expected a revolutionary design from the new Golf will be disappointed: besides the front and rear ends, not much will change.
The proportions are slightly modified, though, with the 2020 VW Golf featuring a longer, wider body than the current model. The front end is both lower and longer for a sportier appearance, and the wheelbase has grown a bit, much to the benefit of rear passengers.
The interior won’t be just roomier, but also more high-tech thanks to a wider range of connectivity and safety systems which will likely include semi-autonomous capability. Compared to the exterior design, the interior will get a much more radical overhaul and will see improvements in terms of quality and comfort.
MQB Evo platform will make the Golf roomier, more efficient, and cleverer
While the design is clearly evolutionary on the outside, the eighth-generation VW Golf brings massive changes underneath. It uses a lighter version of the MQB platform called MQB Evo and a bigger share of lightweight materials in its construction. Those are expected to shave up to 45 kg (100 lbs), making the Golf both more agile and more fuel-efficient.
The next-generation model will accommodate a wide range of powertrains, including a GTE plug-in hybrid version with a longer range than the outgoing model. Expect the usual assortment of turbocharged gasoline and diesel engines, as well as GTI and R performance versions.
It’s uncertain whether VW will still be making a three-door Golf hatchback, given that this body style has fallen out of favor with consumers in recent years. There are some question marks over the wagon version too, even though that one is a big seller in Europe. We’ll learn more about that when the 2020 Golf debuts in the third quarter of this year, most likely at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September. VW has already announced that production starts in June 2019.