Volkswagen Golf crowned winner of TopGear Singapore Everyday Specials Vol. 2

By Clifford Chow, 09 January 2024

Volkswagen Golf crowned winner of TopGear Singapore Everyday Specials Vol. 2

SINGAPORE - So, here it is! Finally, after a long heated battle, complete with the theatrics of chairs thrown across the office (which we would neither confirm nor deny), and also with someone’s poo left on somebody else's notebook; the team has finally agreed on who are the winners of TopGear Singapore Everyday Specials Vol.2!

How did we get here? Well, we compared about fifty everyday cars that we have test driven, which in-all, form twelve different categories, so that we can find out who-did-what-the-best. Previously, the Škoda Octavia Combi RS took the crown in our first edition of Everyday Specials. I mean we couldn’t resist an everyday estate capable of sending your stuff there quickly!

This year’s winner, like some of its everyday peers, has been a result of Singapore’s high-trending COEs, not helped by us recently emerging from crippling supply-chain shortages

For this edition of Everyday Specials, we took in consideration COE prices, which have rocketed to historical highs. So we concluded that for the second instalment of Everyday Specials, we would feature cars which are even more relatable. A humble and fitting approach to an everyday car COTY - or as many of us insiders have come to affectionately call “COUTEE”.

So very humbly… The winner of TopGear Singapore Everyday Specials Vol.2, is the Volkswagen Golf Mk.8 1.5 96kW eTSI.

Volkswagen Golf 1.5 96kW eTSI

The regular bread-and-butter Volkswagen Golf is perhaps one of the most coveted hatchbacks… in the world, and part of its allure is definitely derived from its rocket-in-the-pocket (or would that be that the other way around), Golf GTI sibling. The regular Golf may not clock 100km/h in under 6.5 seconds, and neither does it have the ability to allow you to dial-in in fifteen-stages of how much (less) lean you would want around a corner.

But pick a VW Golf Mk.8. Any VW Golf Mk.8, and right-away, you can tell, it simply provides you with quite the unshakable driving confidence. Initially, when Volkswagen Singapore introduced the 1.5-litre Mild-Hybrid engined Golf 8, it produced 150hp and 250Nm, which meant that it was a Category B COE car). With COEs already going through the roof, Volkswagen Singapore then reintroduced the Golf as a Category A COE car, now producing 130hp and 200Nm.

But while the power and torque curves have been tuned-down, the Golf has retained that very same superb Mild-Hybrid architecture. The tiny bit of electrification provides a small boost when required, especially under heavier acceleration. But more important to us, the Golf’s MHEV powertrain also reaps in fuel-saving benefits, by allowing the engine to completely turn-off, when you lift-off the accelerator. Meaning you can coast practically for free over substantial distances. While cruising, the 1.5-litre engine is also able to deactivate two of its cylinders, further reducing fuel consumption. So good at what it does, we managed a combined 20.8km/l/!

On the inside, the Golf is still on-top of its game with how well it is put-together. You cannot go wrong with quality materials, digital dials, a wireless charging pad and a decently-sorted infotainment system. It seats four comfortably, and has the largest boot for a compact hatchback (compared to the Mazda 3 Hatchback… well that was before it was recently taken off sale). The Golf’s cargo space is matched by its Audi A3 Sportback sibling, and the BMW 1 Series - both which are Premium Compact hatchbacks. 

Speaking of the Audi and BMW hatches, the Volkswagen trumps them in terms of smoothness of its engine’s delivery, thanks to it having four-cylinders, while both the BMW and Audi make do with three-cylinder engines.

So there you go! Congratulations to the good people at Volkswagen Singapore for your win!

There’s more!

While the 1.5-litre Volkswagen Golf 8 has been marked as the winner of the second edition of TopGear Singapore Everyday Specials, click on this blue text to find out which other cars have won in their respective categories!

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