2019 Volkswagen Golf Variant Now Available With 1.5 TGI Engine, Burns CNG

2019 Volkswagen Golf Variant Now Available With 1.5 TGI Engine, Burns CNG 1 photo
Photo: Volkswagen
Despite announcing billions of euros invested in electric mobility, Volkswagen also believes in other ways to help the environment, such as CNG-powered cars. This fuel emits less CO2 and can be obtained more sustainably.
Frankly, if you want to be green, a big electric crossover with an unnecessarily large battery is not the way to go. That's why VW's TGI engines are only available on subcompact and compact cars, the latest being the Golf Variant.

CNG-powered Golfs have been available for many years, but this one features some big changes. For starters, the engine is a 1.5 TGI, a little bigger than the 1.4 of last year and producing more power: 130 HP vs. 110 HP, plus 20 Nm of torque.

The four-cylinder engine is an adaptation of the 1.5 TSI. It keeps the turbocharged setup but has new internals that can cope with the high-friction you see when burning compressed natural gas. And of course, it also complies with the latest emissions regulations, which the old one didn't.

The diagram-type image provided by Volkswagen shows another big change: three gas tanks instead of the previous two, but a much smaller petrol tank. It holds only 9 liters of fuel, which isn't enough to cause range anxiety, but probably reduces the overall distance you can travel on a fully-fuel Golf TGI, since CNG is less efficient.

The three tanks can hold a total volume of 115 liters, equivalent to 18.3 kilos of compressed gas. Two of them are made from CFRP for extra safety. The range with natural gas alone has increased by around 80 kilometers, enabling routes of up to 440 kilometers (based on WLTP) with this fuel.

VW seems to think Germany will be a big market for the Golf Variant TGI, and it's done the match. Currently, there are only 100,000 CNG-powered cars registered in the country, a number that's expected to grow to one million by 2025. The fuel can be 40% cheaper than petrol, and so far, the VW Group has 19 enabled models with more to follow.
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About the author: Mihnea Radu
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Mihnea's favorite cars have already been built, the so-called modern classics from the '80s and '90s. He also loves local car culture from all over the world, so don't be surprised to see him getting excited about weird Japanese imports, low-rider VWs out of Germany, replicas from Russia or LS swaps down in Florida.
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