2015 Volkswagen E Golf

2015 Volkswagen E Golf

Episode 3425
Auto Value and Bumper to BumperTire Rack "The Way Tire Buying Should Be"

The Volkswagen Golf lineup earned our 2015 Drivers’ Choice Award for best small car. One of the reasons being the wide variety of choices you have when it comes to buying one. You can go basic with a TSI, sporty with the GTI, or long range with the TDI. And, there’s even a totally green one on that list, the e-Golf EV. 

It’s not only us that have showered high praise on the 7th generation, 2015 Volkswagen Golf; as 57 veteran auto writers also picked it as the 2015 North American Car of the Year. Our mission here, is to spend some additional time in the all-electric e-Golf to see if it indeed lives up to the rest of the family’s reputation; and if it brings anything new to the EV world. 

Well, it doesn’t take any time at all behind the wheel to realize that the e-Golf drives almost exactly like every other Golf. It does feel a bit heavier, thanks to the additional 700-pounds of battery weight, but that just helps make it feel even more stable. Handling certainly feels similar, though some steering feel seems to have gone missing. 

Now, as for how it compares to other EVs, well it appears to be easier on range, as the distance to empty gauge seems to hang onto numbers a little longer than most before letting them count down. 

Regenerative braking feel can be harsh, but it’s also adjustable. So, you can dial it up for maximum energy recuperation and brake pedal-free treks down steep hills, or dial it down for a more normal feel. One thing’s for sure, it will certainly change the way you drive, as no matter which mode you’re in, there’s not much “coasting down” to stop signs.

Drivers can also control power output by choosing between Normal, Eco, and Eco+ driving modes. 

Overall, it is a very impressive piece of engineering, with almost seamless integration of all EV componentry; and it has by far the most natural throttle feel of any EV we’ve driven. It even had a few of our staffers forgetting that they were driving an EV after some time behind the wheel. 

The Fed’s driving range is listed at 83-miles. Now, that’s less than both the Nissan Leaf and the Kia Soul EV, but its Government Fuel Economy Ratings of 126-City, 105-Highway, and 116-Combined MPGes beats both of them. And of course there’s an almost perfect Energy Impact Score of just 0.2-barrels of annual oil use with zero CO2 emissions. 

The powertrain is VW’s own design and features an 85-kW motor that outputs 115-horsepower and 199 lb-ft. of torque; juiced by a 24.2-kWh lithium-ion battery pack mounted beneath the rear seat.

So, notably, cargo room is unchanged from other 4-door Golf hatchbacks with 22.8 cu-ft. of space in the rear, 52.7 with the seatbacks folded. 

And while the new-gen Golf certainly impresses us with its ride-and-handling capabilities, interior build quality is equally impressive. The e-Golf has the same sporty feel as the rest of the lineup, and even retains elements like a flat-bottom steering wheel.

Unique components to the e-Golf include blue trim, and of course an exclusive gauge panel with a power/charge meter and a battery meter that looks exactly like a traditional fuel gauge.

Navigation, back-up camera, heated leatherette seating, 5.8-inch touchscreen infotainment, and keyless entry are all standard. And like most newer EV efforts the e-Golf uses an efficient heat pump for cabin climate control.

Things outside are a little more of a departure, with LED headlights, C-shaped LED DRLs located down low, blue trim, updated grille, 16-inch alloy wheels, and of course unique EV badging.

But, from the rear, other than the lack of a tail pipe, there’s little to indicate the e-Golf’s fossil fuel-free nature. Even the charging port is located behind the traditional fuel filler door, and the cord locks into place with the vehicles central locking system. 

Available only in very well equipped SEL Premium trim, e-Golf pricing is in line with rival EVs, starting at $36,265. And of course the usual government rebates apply, bringing actual cost down to $28,765. 

The 2015 Volkswagen e-Golf with its solid feel, terrific handling, and great throttle response, is a true high water mark for mainstream EVs.  And much like the equally new and impressive Kia Soul EV, the more time we spend in them, the more EVs start to make sense.  They even have us thinking that a plug-in driving future might not be so hard to take after all.

Specifications

  • Engine: 85-kW electric motor
  • Horsepower: 115
  • Torque: 199 lb-ft.
  • EPA: 126 mpge city/ 105 mpge highway
  • Energy Impact: 0.2 barrels of oil/yr
  • CO2 Emissions: 0

Long Term Updates

Mileage: 3,000

So far, our petroleum-free Volkswagen e-Golf long-term electric car has been problem-free, smooth, and ultra-quiet. 

But, with only 3,000 miles on the clock, we’re still in the “get-to-know-you-phase”.

The feds lists the eGolf’s range at 83-miles. Yet, with careful driving and maximum regen braking dialed in, you can easily do much more. Around town and on commutes we’re impressed at how slowly the range decreases. Only on the open highway does it plunge as rapidly as rivals, but they don’t have this EV’s GTI-like handling. 

So, it doesn’t take too much time behind the wheel to realize that this car is the home run of current EVs.  

Mileage: 3,700

Admittedly, trips in our Volkswagen e-Golf have been mostly of the short variety, having only racked up 3,700–miles so far in our 2-months with Volkswagen’s first pure-EV. But we’re slowly venturing further afield, with a good grasp on how far we can push the e-Golf before needing a recharge.

That confidence has also been enhanced by a new 220-volt charger, helping us get a full charge in about half the time compared to 110. 

Most comments from our driver’s log center around how much the e-Golf feels just like a typical VW. Which is to say there are no weird EV eccentricities; just all Volkswagen Golf sporty feel in a gasoline-free package.

A very nicely equipped package at that, as in SEL Premium trim, backup camera and navigation are standard. 

Mileage: 4,300

It’s with much sadness that we bring you the following news about the 2015 Volkswagen e-Golf… …it’s no longer here! 

And that’s the only negative that we can come up with after our 3-month 4,300-mile plug-in adventure, except for some odd noises that emanated from the climate control system on startup. 

We’re very much in love with the whole Golf lineup, and our time spent in the e-Golf has only deepened our affection. 

Much like the GTIs that recently passed through our long-term fleet, the e-Golf is way more enjoyable than the typical 4-cylinder hatchback, with every stoplight reminding you of its awesome EV torque.

2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 2

2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06

Bringing Supercar Performance To The Street…American Style

Episode 4324
Auto Value and Bumper to BumperTire Rack "The Way Tire Buying Should Be"

What happens when you let enthusiasts and engineers worry less about tradition and allow them to do what they do best? You get cars like this Chevrolet Corvette Z06. What happens when GM let’s us borrow one for a few days? That’s what we’re about to find out!

While the Z06 package first became an option for the Chevrolet Corvette back in 1963, it wasn’t until the C5 that it describe the ultimate track-focused ‘Vette. And while since then every Z06 has gotten more extreme, if we were plotting things out on a graph, this is where the line of performance progression goes from a steady incline to almost vertical. Yes, the latest C8 Z06 is all that.

It starts with a brand new LT6 5.5-liter DOHC V8 that outputs 670-horsepower and delivers 460 lb-ft. of torque. It sounds great too, the very aggressive nature of its flat-plane crank design has it sounding, and feeling like it’s trying to shake its way out of the engine bay unless you unleash some of its furry.

This dual-cammer featured a dry-sump design from the get-go and is more racing engine than souped-up small block, being developed originally for the C8.R race car.

2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Front
2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Rear
2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Dead Front Wide
2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Dead Front Close
2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Fascia
2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Wheel
2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Profil
2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Dead Rear
2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Badge
2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Front2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Rear2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Dead Front Wide2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Dead Front Close2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Fascia2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Wheel2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Profil2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Dead Rear2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Badge

It made short work of Roebling Road Raceway’s long front straight, able to reach 160 by the end of it. With Hellcats no longer rolling off the assembly line, this is easily our new favorite V8.

But, as you can imagine, Chevy has done much more than just plop a bigger motor into its rear-midship engine bay, which was easier to do since they didn’t have to worry about anyone seeing over it. They’ve addressed just about every part of the car to ensure it puts that power to best use for coming out of corners like few other cars on the street.

That includes upgrades for the short/long arm double wishbone suspension setup that can be further enhanced with an available Z07 Performance Package that adds more aggressive tuning for Magnetic Ride Control, and Michelin Sport Cup 2R tires. Which can be mounted on 20 and 21-inch carbon fiber wheels with carbon ceramic brakes nestled behind.

It all translated into more grip than a semi’s worth of industrial strength Velcro through Roebling’s 9-turns.

With Hellcats no longer rolling off the assembly line, this is easily our new favorite V8.

Like most Corvettes, the Z06 can be as wild or mild of an experience as you care to make it but will most likely be the fastest car to show up at most track days. Yet, the same magnetic dampers that void all body roll on the track, provide an almost plush ride quality for the drive home, though not quite as plush as the standard Corvette.

We’re struggling to find something non-fan boy to say; sure the 8-speed dual-clutch gearbox doesn’t deliver shifts with the brutality of some exotics, but really, they’re just as fast, and the shifts are much smoother.

Believe it or not, almost all the body is unique. So, rather than just tacking on some fender flares, Chevy made the entire car wider to cover the 345 rear tires, yet keep the same uniform look in place.

The optional Carbon Fiber Aero Package adds a front splitter, rocker extensions, front dive planes, and a huge rear wing. We’re not sure if the multi-level nature of that rear wing was done for functional or aesthetic reasons, but it doesn’t block your rearview, and that is much appreciated.

2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Dash
2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Seats
2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Shifter
2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Frunk
2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Engine
2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Dash2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Seats2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Shifter2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Frunk2024 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Engine

We always talk about torque being more important than horsepower when it comes to acceleration, and the Z06 works with almost 200 fewer lb-ft. of torque than horsepower, but you sure wouldn’t know it when you mash the throttle.

Easy to use programmable launch control allows you to dial in your preferred RPM for launching; we found 4,500 was just about perfect for Roebling’s front straight, allowing for just a tiny bit of slip before rocketing us to 60 on a 40 degree day in just 2.6-seconds.

Power continues to pour on hard as the engine quickly hits its 8,600 RPM redline, and gear changes happen often. The sound inside the cabin in intense, and when the ¼-mile came to an end in 10.7-seconds at 130 miles-per-hour, it felt like it was just getting started.

Government Fuel Economy Ratings are a low 12-City, 19-Highway, and 14-Combined.

For the Z06 there are 3 LZ pricing points to land on, starting at $114,395; but you can go with the top-of-the-line Z06, add 50-grand worth of options, and still come out half the price of anything you can compare it to.

Call us home teamers all you want, but America’s only exotic does it yet again, not only is it the best Corvette ever, but it is also easily one of the greatest American cars of all time, arriving at a particularly poignant time culturally as we mourn the potential loss of internal combustion engines altogether. So, come for the spectacular engine and stay for the complete performance package, and experience, that is the Chevrolet Corvette Z06.

Specifications

  • Engine: 5.5-liter V8
  • Horsepower: 670
  • 0-60 mph: 2.6 seconds
  • EPA: 12 City | 19 Highway | 14 Combined
  • Transmission: 8-speed dual clutch auto
  • Torque: 460 lb-ft.
  • 1/4 Mile: 10.7-seconds at 130 mph