It's called the e-Golf and it's based on all-new underpinnings. The major difference between this and any other 2015 Golf hatchback is that it gets its power from an electric motor and battery.
But here's the kicker. At $35,445 (plus $820 destination and delivery), this is the most expensive Golf ever put into production for an American consumer, costing as much as a well equipped Passat CC.
For the money, you're only getting 115 horsepower, coupled to what Volkswagen describes as "class-leading levels of torque", 199 lb-ft of twisting force. They also say customers should expect average range between 70 and 90 miles, depending on driving style and charging behavior.
A number of charging solutions are planned, including the CCS (Combined Charging System), which brings the battery to 80% from empty in only 30 minutes.
As is the case with all of these expensive green cars, Volkswagen is offering pretty much every feature as standard to ensure customers are happy with the everyday experience.
The e-Golf is sold as an SEL Premium top-spec car, which means heated and cooled… everything, navigation, satellite radio and the first all-LED headlights of any Volkswagen sold in America.
What about the competition? Ford also makes an electric version of its compact hatch, called the Focus Electric. It costs $35,170 and gets an EPA-estimated range of 76 miles. Even though they're more expensive, BMW's $41,350 i3 and Mercedes' practical $41,450 B-Class Electric are very interesting machine. But the most important rivals for the e-Golf Chevy Volt and Nissan Leaf to consider, both of which are well established models.
So the question is: would you pay that much for an electric car from a company that's relatively new to the game? And will the German build quality make up for the high sticker price?