VW Golf R Estate is a reminder that family vehicles can be fun

I’ve always been a fan of wagons. In fact, the very first review I wrote for this publication was for a Japanese wagon that I absolutely adore. For me, wagons are the antithesis of SUVs. Perfect for those who want the space and practicality of SUVs but don’t want to compromise the great driving dynamics that come with the added space from the ground.

So, when the news of a Golf R Estate came out, I was elated. Not because it’s another model added to the car we won’t get in the Philippines, but for one very important letter: R.

You see, the Golf R is currently forbidden fruit in the Philippine market. With the standard Golf leaving the current lineup, the chance to see the R here officially is slimmer than Olive Oyl.

But I know for a fact that the VW Golf R isn’t something to cough at. It’s the ultimate answer to the relative mundanity of the Golf nameplate, a reflection of what VW can do (while they are still developing internal combustion engines).

Now, the Mk8 Golf R gets a wagon version, which puts two of my favorite things in a car – practical space and incredible performance.

Design-wise, the Golf R Wagon is nothing short of amazing. The added sporty cues add aggressiveness into the mix, while the sharp lines and huge 19-inch alloys still keep it within the earshot of sportiness even with the long roof.

Inside, athletic bits are apparent, including the R-specific sports seats with suede inserts and the glaring blue R logo accents. And of course, the Golf R Estate has a 38mm bigger legroom than the Golf R Hatchback, along with an outstanding 611 liters of default cargo space. Fold the seats down and you’ll get the 1,642 available loading space – numbers that are even bigger than midsize crossovers.

But then, the Golf R Wagon’s greatness lies with what resides under that hood. The turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-4 gasoline engine is more powerful than its predecessor, pushing out 316hp and 420Nm of torque to all four wheels via the 7-speed dual-clutch transmission.

With that said, the Golf R Estate can sprint from 0-100 km/h in just 4.9 seconds. So yes, getting a month’s worth of groceries would be so much quicker than ever. More importantly, you can do this sideways since it also comes with Drift mode if bought with the optional performance package.

VW Golf R Estate is a reminder that family vehicles can be fun, too. And it’s definitely added to my list of achievable dream cars.

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