47 years ago, Janis Joplin sang about how all her friends drove Porsches and she wanted a Mercedes Benz to “make amends”.
But let’s say that it’s today….and you’re not a one-percenter….and instead of driving Porsches or Mercedes, your friends play in the mud every now and then….or commute in the snow….or live where the rain just puddles up on your roads.
Subaru has gobbled up a huge share of the entry-level all-wheel-drive market with its’ Forester….and Volkswagen finally noticed.
So less than a year after coming out with their Golf SportsWagen ( a vehicle that lives up to its’ name, BTW), the folks at VW have added an Alltrack version of their SportsWagen….with VW’s 4Motion all-wheel drive, a bit of cladding, and a little over an inch more ground clearance.
This extra capability will run right around $4K more than the low-$20’s sticker on the lower, “regular” FWD SportWagen. Our test TSI version came with a $28,615 sticker, including destination fees plus front and rear park assist, adaptive cruise, auto-emergency braking, and VW’s perforated leatherette seating.
Around $3,600 more will get you a sunroof, keyless entry with push-button start and an upgraded Fender audio system.
Power comes from VW’s 170 HP, 1.8 liter turbo running through a 6-speed automatic, rated at 22 city and 30 highway MPG’s. We got close to 31 on a round-trip to the beach.
You’ll have decent room for 4 or 5 inside, plus the utility of the squared-off rear hatch, giving you 30.4 cu ft of space with the rear seats up, and 66.5 with the rears folded.
One more thing that you’ll have is a rather spirited, yet comfortable ride.
VW Alltrack has an independent suspension….which does a great job of soaking up little bumps, yet feeling firm and controlled at speed.
And as for the “spirit” part, the conventional 6-speed auto gives the Alltrack “feel”….the kick and feel of actual downshifts when toe meets pedal. It’s a feel that most continuously variable transmissions just can’t match.
If you like the shape and functionality of VW’s new 5-door, you can get it in almost any flavor. The standard FWD Sportwagen, an AWD Sportwagen, and the inch-plus higher Alltrack.
If you like to play in the mud….or snow….or wet….and also like to play behind the wheel, give VW’s Golf-based Alltrack a look. You just might like it!