Volkswagen Golf trim levels 2022: Models and specs compared

Back to 'Expert guides'

The Volkswagen Golf is a popular choice for lease customers looking for a practical, well-made hatchback. The latest models feature clever infotainment systems, a range of petrol, diesel and hybrid drivetrains and a stunning new look.

It’s also available in a number of different trim levels, and the one that’s best for you will depend on your own requirements and tastes – and of course how much you want to spend.

The new Volkswagen Golf 1.5 eTSI, Golf eHybrid and Golf GTE

It’s worth remembering that leasing is one of the best ways to get a higher trim level for less money, because higher specified models will have a higher residual value – which often dictates monthly lease prices.

So, here’s a full guide to the Golf trim levels current on offer. Which one’s the right choice for you?

Volkswagen Golf trim levels 2022

The ‘best’ trim level will of course depend on your individual preferences, but there are currently a plethora of options.

  • Life
  • Active
  • R-Line
  • GTE
  • GTI
  • GTD
  • R
  • Alltrack

Volkswagen Golf Life

Volkswagen Golf Life exterior

The Life model is the entry-level option of the Golf for both the hatchback and estate. But don’t let that put you off. It’s very well specified considering its position in the range, with 16in alloy wheels, a 10in infotainment system, 10.25in digital driver display and a raft of driver assistance technology coming as standard.

Adaptive cruise control, dynamic road sign display and front and rear parking sensors all help make your journey more relaxing and easy. Rain-sensing wipers, and automatically dipping rear view mirror along with interior ambient lighting are also fitted at no extra cost. The only downside is that it looks a little plainer than other models, with no body kits and a rather ordinary set of alloys.

Volkswagen Golf Active

Volkswagen Golf Active

The next step up is the Active, which adds a variety of extra features for those that are a little more – you guessed it – active. For starters, the Winter pack is added, which gives you thye comfort of heated front seats and steering wheel.

There’s also three-zone air conditioning, with rear passengers getting their own controls. The rear glass is also tinted, and you get a slightly sportier set of alloy wheels – although they are still 16in items.

Volkswagen Golf Style

Golf Style exterior

Style can be considered the start of the mid-range models, with these cars receiving larger 17in Belmont alloy wheels, LED “Plus” headlights and a host of brushed dark metal trim pieces. There’s also a different interior that features a seat centre (arm rest). All in all, it adds a touch more luxury and refinement to the basic models.

Volkswagen Golf R-Line

Golf R-Line exterior

If you want a sporty-looking Golf but aren’t necessarily bothered about a potent powerplant, the R-Line is a great choice. The 17in alloy wheels of the Style have been swapped out for a more aggressive looking set finished in Valencia Grey metallic.

You’ll also add R-Line specific bumpers that give the whole car a more poised look. Sports seats are also standard in the front, while a sports suspension and driver mode selection offers a more dialed in drive.

Volkswagen Golf GTE

Golf GTE exterior

Designed to be the high performance plug-in hybrid of the range, the GTE doesn’t just add power. You’ll also get the brand’s clever IQ. LED matrix lighting package that includes LED headlights along with an illuminated grille and door handles.

Keyless entry is now standard too, which the steering wheel is a leather-wrapped sports item that gets shifting paddles. Like the R-Line, you’ll still get a driving mode selection, but it adds driver convenience features too, including lane assist, traffic jam assist and emergency assist.

Volkswagen Golf GTI

GTI exterior

Let’s be honest – the GTI is more than a trim level; it’s the most iconic version of the Golf and the latest version offers all the performance you’d expect from a cutting-edge hot hatch. The most notable differences on the outside include large 18in Richmond alloy wheels and a sporty honeycomb grille design.

There’s LED front fog lights too, along with the same interior features you get on the GTE.

Volkswagen Golf GTD

Golf GTD exterior

Diesel might be making way for plug-in tech, but the GTD is still one of the finest choices you can make if you want an economical performance vehicle capable of long distances. For the most part, it gets the same kind of treatment as the GTI model, but the alloy wheels have been swapped out for 18in Bakersfield items.

Volkswagen Golf R

Golf R exterior

The Golf R is the ultimate performance variant of the line-up and as such takes its inspiration from motorsport. On the outside, that means it gets an R-specific styling pack. Beefed up bumpers and wider side skirts, the Golf R looks like it means business.

Elsewhere, you’ll find 18in Jerez Black diamond turned alloy wheels, while the R’s potent power train is mated to Volkswagen’s all-wheel drive 4Motion system. The IQ. Headlights also feature separated daytime running lights, dynamic cornering lights and dynamic indicator lights as standard.

Volkswagen Golf Alltrack estate

Volkswagen Golf Alltrack

If you want a capable, spacious family car, the Golf Alltrack is a great option. It’s only available on the estate model and essentially adds Volkswagen’s 4Motion all-wheel drive system and a raft of external features that give it a more rugged look.

It gets Alltrack-specific bumpers, a front underbody guard, a honeycomb grille and chrome roof rails amongst other styling changes.

DB2020AU00122

Ready to find your perfect Volkswagen Golf?

If you’ve already set your heart on your trim level, you can compare Golf leasing plans right now by hitting the button below. Alternatively, here’s our guide to Volkswagen Golf colours – another important decision you’ll have to make before ordering your new car.

Compare Volkswagen Golf lease deals

Get the most out of Leasing.com

Create an account. It's simple and easy to do, so you can:

  • Receive tailored deals by email
  • View your search history
  • Make faster enquiries
  • Chat online to leasing experts

Already have an account?
Sign in here

Create an account
Step-by-step guide to leasing

Step-by-step guide to leasing

A quick guide to walk you through the six simple steps of car leasing - from start to finish

View the step-by-step guide
Need some help deciding?

Need some help deciding?

Our Top Picks articles can help you choose the right vehicle for your budget. Explore the latest recommendations straight from our team of in-house experts.

View all Top Picks
Frequently asked questions

Frequently asked questions

Got a question - someone may have already asked it! Head on over to our FAQs page for a list of the most commonly asked car leasing questions.

View all FAQs