Volkswagen is not planning new gasoline or diesel versions of its staple Golf hatchback, long Europe's bestselling car, as it looks to go all-electric, brand boss Thomas Schaefer told German publication Automobilwoche (via Reuters) Sunday.
The move, which would end the internal-combustion Golf lineup after eight generations going back to 1974, would free up funds for further investments in EVs, according to the report. The plan is for the current eighth-generation Golf, which was introduced in 2020 and is due for a major update in 2024, to finish its life cycle and potentially be replaced by an EV bearing the Golf name around 2028, Schaefer said in the interview, adding that the VW brand will sell only electric cars beginning in 2033.
Volkswagen ID.2all concept
VW stopped selling the standard Golf in the U.S. with the introduction of the eighth-generation model, leaving only the sporty Golf GTI and Golf R versions. It's unclear what the fate of these models will be. The GTI in particular was one of the original hot hatchbacks, so it would be the end of an era if it isn't reimagined as an EV.
Two recent VW concepts hint at a possible electric Golf successor. The ID.2all concept unveiled last month had styling in some ways reminiscent of the current Golf, while riding on a new variant of the VW MEB platform dubbed MEB Entry. VW says it previews an affordable EV retailing for less than $30,000 launching in Europe in 2026.
2019 Volkswagen e-Golf
VW also showed the ID.Life concept in 2021. Again, it was meant to preview a more affordable EV based on a modified version of the MEB platform, in this time called MEB Small.
EV fans will recall that VW has already made an electric Golf, though. The automaker produced more than 100,000 e-Golf hatchbacks, sharing a platform with gasoline and diesel seventh-generation Golf models, before going all-in on MEB. The return of the e-Golf has also been reported as a possibility in recent months.