What We Like: Nearly everything. More than halfway through its 40,000-mile long-term test, the Volkswagen Golf Alltrack wagon remains endearing and practical, a great all-around vehicle that manages the rare combo of being both affordable and engaging. It has charmed nearly our entire staff and, unlike some other vehicles in our long-term fleet, hasn't begun losing any fans as the miles continue to accrue.
C/D's Montana bureau chief, John Phillips, took the car out west for a brief sojourn and had good things to say about the VW after many long days of driving, including one 827-mile stint from Wisconsin to Wyoming during which he found the comfortable seats particularly endearing. "I love how light and airy this car is," Phillips wrote. "Engine is quiet, idle is near perfection. I traveled at 70 mph for miles in fifth gear, forgetting one more cog was in reserve. Terrific ride, moderate handling, quiet, pragmatic cargo carrier. A desirable car."
What We Don't Like: Among the minor complaints noted in the Alltrack's logbook include a hard-to-reach USB port at the base of the center stack and a sticky hand brake that, Phillips said, "sounds like metal tearing metal." These are just slightly maddening details in an otherwise top-to-bottom excellent car, which is why we just once again named it to our annual 10Best Cars list for 2019.
What Went Wrong: We still haven't experienced any major hiccups during the Alltrack's tenure, although the 20,000-mile scheduled maintenance stop ended up being somewhat costly, at $329, due to an off-center steering wheel that necessitated a $149 alignment. This dealer visit also included an oil change, a tire rotation, and various inspections. We've reinstalled a set of Nokian Hakkapeliitta R2 winter tires for the snow-and-ice season, making the all-wheel-drive Alltrack even more capable in inclement weather.
Where We Went: Aside from its nearly 4000-mile journey to Montana and back, the Alltrack also ventured to Philadelphia and several destinations around Michigan.
Months in Fleet: 11 months Current Mileage: 25,627 miles
Average Fuel Economy: 27 mpg
Fuel Tank Size: 14.5 gal Fuel Range: 390 miles
Service: $462 Normal Wear: $0 Repair: $0
Damage and Destruction: $553
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