The '99 Golf TDI
I originally wanted to try out a Jetta TDI, but none were on the lot. Most of the other dealers I went to didn't have *any* TDI cars. The dealer was nice enough to grant me a test drive without committing to buying the car. But that's way beside the point.
And now for the Test
We started up in our lot. The "glow plug" light was located next to the "20" on the speedometer. It started up in less than a second. Leaving the lot, with the windows down, I could hear the motor's turbocharger. We turned right onto Florin Road and right again on 55th street. We turned left at the next T-intersection and then we made a stop at the next right. The dealer showed me the handling and the ABS system. It was very good but a bit scary. Rarely would I ever drive like that.
When we stopped, the dealer let me take the wheel. I noticed the european style side blinkers (bright yellow). The dealer joked about the side-view mirrors being "voice activated".
After getting back on the road, I turned onto 65th street southbound. I was impressed with the acceleration. As I got onto highway 99 north, I was asked to measure the tachometer reading at 60 mph. The dealer claimed 2,100 rpm. When I got to 60 mph I got around 2,100. Acceleration in 5th gear is good.
The tachometer only goes to 5,500 rpm with the redline at 5,000 rpm. The speedopmeter goes only to 140 mph, while the gas models go to 160 mph.
The steering worked well. It was the standard power steering. The gearshift (this was a 5 speed stick) cooperated satisfactorally when I backed into the spot that we drove out of.
I was quite pleased with the Golf I test drove. The only drawbacks were that it was 2-door, and underequipped because it had GL trim (noticable by cloth interior vs. velour). I wanted a Jetta, and luckily it will now be available only in GLS trim. Some cars will come with the "luxury" package i.e. alloy wheels and sunroof. None will be available with leather interior, which is fine with me, since I don't like leather seats. I also find heated seats silly.
So I am looking forward to getting a Jetta with TDI. No longer will I have to specify GLS trim(?).
Mail to me!