40 Years of the Volkswagen Golf

Written by Paul Strauss | April 7, 2014

If you can believe it, the Volkswagen Golf has been around for 40 years. In this short clip, VW walks us through the seven generations of Golf since Giorgio Giugiaro’s design first appeared on the scene in March of 1974.  Designed as the successor to the classic VW Beetle, the Golf broke away from its predecessor’s rear-engine, rear-wheel drive to a transverse-mounted front-wheel drive.

We also enjoyed watching the clip below, which demonstrates the evolution of the Golf in a much more direct way:

Through the years, the Golf would go through numerous revisions, including the release of the beloved GTI and a diesel model in 1976, the Golf Cabriolet in 1979, later to be followed by improvements in technology, safety and functionality. In the 1980s, the Golf would get options like anti-lock brakes, and an available all-wheel drive variant. In the 1990s, the car would add airbags, structural improvements, and the vehicle’s first six-cylinder engine. The 21st century would herald the arrival of even sportier variants, such as the powerful R32, with a 155mph top speed, and the debut of a dual-clutch transmission. In recent years, VW has focused on making the Golf even more fuel efficient, reducing weight and offering turbodiesel and all-electric variants.

Through the years, Volkswagen has sold over 30 million Golfs, which makes it the most popular VW ever made.

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