2010 Volkswagen Golf TDI

The Golf TDI in its pleasing blue paint was a nice car to have waiting for me at the Detroit airport when I flew home from driving the Buick Regal in Germany. There were three of us in the car heading back to Ann Arbor, and we were all impressed by the ride quality and the quiet cabin. It's easy to stall this car; as Phil mentions, there's a narrow powerband and you have to modulate the accelerator pedal carefully.

Would I choose the TDI over one of the other available engines in the Golf? Only if I regularly made long highway trips; for that purpose, it's a champ. But if most of my driving was urban and on two-lane roads, I'd join Phil in getting myself a GTI. For diesel fans, though, this Golf TDI is a big winner.

Joe DeMatio, Deputy Editor

Edward A. Sanchez
Again, I'm skeptical. I do not dispute the positive first impression the interior materials and paint finish impart. But in my experience, VW spends money on the areas that consumers will touch and interact with on a regular basis (not necessarily a bad strategy in and of itself) but consequently, cheaps-out on behind-the-scenes or below-the-surface components and engineering. Case-in-point, the notoriously fragile window regulators on the Mk4 Golfs/Jettas. Until I'm convinced VW's inherent quality is up to the same standards as its admittedly impressive paint and interior materials, I'm not buying.

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