The golden spanner: how the VW Golf was(n’t) born

Somewhere deep in the Siebengebirge, a misty room begins to clear, revealing a scientist clutching a golden spanner. A smile creeps across his face as he shouts: “ich habe es!” At this, his fellow scientists flock into the room, skeptical. Only once they’ve touched it, smelt it, and sat in it, do they truly believe, and erupt with joy. He had created the Golf.

For the next few hours they hold him aloft, sing German folk songs, and drink into the night. But when morning comes, our scientist can’t find his golden spanner. In fact, when he thinks about it, he can’t remember ever having a golden spanner. And despite years of searching, he would never see it again. Some said he’d just imagined it – an idea that caused the scientist to descend, slowly, into madness.

Obviously, none of the above is true. But we felt it was important to give the Golf the origin story it deserves: one worthy of a revolutionary hatchback that’s become a modern classic. If the above had taken place, it would have been in 1973 – the year before the Golf hit the market – and since then the car has taken on almost mythical status.

This has always been due, in part, to the originality of its design. Before the Golf, hatchbacks were a barely more than a dream – a whisper on the wind. But after its release, they came rattling onto the market one after the other. Meanwhile the car that started off as a replacement for the VW Beetle became iconic in its own right, initially as a stylish and reliable family car.

In 1983, the Mk2 Golf hit the market, and narrowly missed out on the European Car of the Year award, before its successor finally claimed the title in 1992. As each version went by, the car was tweaked and enhanced, while staying true to the style that made it so popular in the first place. These included estate and drop-top versions, as well as countless special releases – many of which have become collectibles.

40 years and over 30 million sales later, we’ve arrived at the Golf Mk7. Available in ten different versions – including the fast GTI, the even faster R model, and the environmentally loving GTE – the Golf Mk7 combines timeless style with modern safety and power. In fact, the R model zooms from 0-60 in just 4.6 seconds, making it the quickest Golf yet. So one thing’s for sure – the Golf’s origins might not be that interesting, but the story since has been epic.

The Golf Mk7 is available at all our Volkswagen dealerships. Book your test-drive today.