UPDATED 25/10 - Volkswagen’s eighth-generation 2020 Golf hatchback has finally been unveiled in Germany.
A leak from German publication Ausburger Allgemeine, which uploaded a full suite of 2020 Golf pics online ahead of the embargo before promptly pulling the shots back down again a short time later, proved on the mark in terms of the look and feel of the Mk8 Golf, but we can now reveal some local details around the car.
The first Mk8 Golfs will, we're told, land in Australia in early 2020, potentially alongside an all-new version of the venerable Golf GTI.
It's expected to run a 180kW version of VW's EA888 2.0-litre turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine, along with an electronic limited-slip diff as standard. The Golf R isn't expected to land for at least 12 months, though.
VW's 1.4-litre turbocharged engine will carry over from Mk7.5 Golf into the new car - blame our terrible fuel for that - while new tech will include a heads-up display, a new 10-inch multimedia screen and more active safety tech.
Wireless Apple CarPlay will also be offered, according to our sources.
Unsurprisingly, the 2020 Golf is a gentle but significant evolution of the seventh-generation model, preserving the unmistakable look but introducing some bold styling highlights.
READ MORE 2020 VW Golf caught undisguised
Both front and rear lights gain a step about their midpoint, which accentuates the internal LED arrangement, while the headlights have an even more dramatic evolution with an eyeliner accent added to each outside corner.
The detail continues through the light’s LED upper accents and the new slimmer grille for a continuous full-width fine line. It’s duplicated inside with a fin that cuts through the dashboard from the air vents right and left.
A range of variants are represented in the leaked shots including an R-Line version that wears a colour similar to the current Turmeric Yellow, a white version appears to be the closest to the affordable end of the range, while a second white version confirms a new GTE.
Interestingly, the company will introduce eTSI boot badging with the new Golf range, presumably depicting a hybridised version of the TSI turbocharged petrol engines.
Read more: Could the next VW Golf R go five-cylinder?
The eighth-generation Golf is also the first combustion-powered Volkswagen to roll out wearing the company’s new-look badge. The revamped badge made its debut on the nose of the ID.3 small hatchback.
Both manual and automatic transmissions are shown in the images and cabin views also offer a glimpse of a huge 10-inch central information touchscreen, complemented by the fully digital instrument cluster.
No three-door versions are shown in the photos, which adds to speculation the Golf will continue on in five-door configuration only; however, the absence of a GTI or R variants in the pictures is not likely to be prophetic.
Check back in early tomorrow as we bring you more images and the full technical story following its official release.
Click through the image gallery at the top for plenty more photos of the 2020 Volkswagen Golf.