VW Golf GTE Plug-in Hybrid Launched in Britain from £28,035

Golf GTE 1 photo
Photo: Volkswagen
25 e-Retailers from across Volkswagen's UK dealer network have begun taking advanced orders for the new Golf GTE model, the German company's first plug-in hybrid. It's a very interesting little car, but at that price, it's going to be a hard sell. Let's see if the GTE is worth entry-level BMW money!
First of all, we have to mention that the Golf GTE was actually unveiled last year, but took slightly longer to convert to RHD than the all-electric e-Golf. Its powertrain is a plug-in hybrid system, just like the on on a Toyota Prius PHEV. But the major difference is that the GTE is a hot hatch, like the GTI and GTD.

Essentially, this Golf has two engines. One is a 1.4-liter TSI turbo making 150 PS and equipped with fancy tech like direct injection and cylinder deactivation. The other one is electric and puts out 102 PS. Together, they offer a combined output of 204 PS and 350 Nm (258 lbs ft) of torque.


Unlike the GTI and GTD, the electric hot hatch comes a standard with a six-speed DSG, so it's quite fast off the line. Official numbers claim 0 to 62 mph in 7.6 seconds and a top speed of 138 mph.

Base on those numbers alone, it's very hard to recommend the GTE because it's slower than hot hatches from the class below, like the Ford Fiesta or Clio RS. Not to mention an average 320d diesel sedan will outrun will probably outrun it.


The picture really wouldn't be complete without mentioning how economical this car is. The GTE comes with an 8.8 kWh battery, giving you all-electric range of 31 miles (50 km) and an electric top speed of 81 mph. That's comparable to the latest Porsche or Audi PHEVs. On the combined cycle, the Golf is capable of returning a very respectable 166 mpg and CO2 emissions of 39 g/km.  As such it is expected to be exempt from VED and the Congestion Charge.

Price and competitors

£28,035 is the standard price of the Golf GTE as a 5-door. The car is only available in one trim level which is generous and includes things like a body kit, 18-inch alloys, climate control, cruise control and LED headlights. But there are ways to spend more money, which include a navigation, large wheels and paint.

Since last year, VW also sells an all-electric car called the e-Golf for £25,845. We'd pick the GTE because it's more fun to drive, but if you never want to visit the pump again, get the battery-powered model.

Another competitor worth considering is the Audi A3 e-tron. It costs £34,950 and comes with the exact same engine and gearbox as the GTE, but gets more standard premium features.

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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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