TESTED 2018 Golf R Fuel Economy + All Modes

TESTED 2018 Golf R Fuel Economy + All Modes

Hi, it’s Dave at Stable Vehicle Contracts,
I hope you’re doing okay. So, we are in a Golf R 2-litre TSI (2.0 TSI) 310 brake horse
power, manual, five-door hatchback and we’re going to test out the different driving modes.
So, we’re going to do journeys – equal distance… same, basically the exact same journey in
Eco Mode, Normal Mode and Race Mode. Then we’ll be able to dissect it, see if there’s
any difference in the combined mpg, how the car feels, how it drives across those three
different modes. Just to see if there’s much of a difference between them really, because
honestly we don’t know, so we wanted to find out. So, we’re going to be finding out whether
the different driving modes on the Golf R – Eco, Normal and Race Mode – have any effect,
or if there’s much difference in the fuel economy, and driving style, between those
three modes. So, I drive.. my daily commute is around 30 – 35 miles, each way, so around
70 miles round trip. So, we’re going to take the Golf R hatchback on three commutes with
me in three different modes and we’re going to find out whether or not there’s much of
a difference between those three different modes. Mainly looking for differences in the
fuel economy, but hopefully we’ll be able to see if there’s much of a difference between
the ride and the driving style in those three modes as well. So, it’ll be interesting to
see how we get on. So, let’s go! So, the first journey we’re going to do is
going to be in the Economy Mode. So, let’s get that changed and when we get home, we’ll
see what sort’ve mpg we’ve got. Let’s do that now. So, let’s switch the modes up… and
now we’re over in Economy. You can definitely – don’t know if you can pick it up on the
camera – there was definitely a change in the note in the exhaust/engine there when
I switched it over to Economy Mode. So, that’s the first thing we picked up straight away,
just – that note dropped. So, yeah. I’m going to get going, and we’ll see how we get on. Okay, so back home from the journey home from
work. In Economy Mode, so.. a couple of things that I noticed about the Economy Mode. Firstly,
the engine notes were a lot lower. You know, that ‘R’ roar definitely, definitely wasn’t
there. But, in terms of power, y’know when I put my foot down to overtake on the motorway,
or to get out of a junction, that was still there, so there was no real difference – I
didn’t feel – in that. The suspension was definitely softer going around corners. You
could feel it… not like where it didn’t feel good, or anything like that, it was just
a lot softer than when it’s been in Race Mode. But still, y’know, I didn’t feel there was
much of a difference in its actual performance. The big thing was, like I say, the engine
notes. It just… you couldn’t… they just weren’t there, which – when you’re driving
a Golf R – you know, you want to hear that. And also, as you’d expect, the car’s prompting
me to go up through the gears much quicker than you normally would, so for example, when
you’re at 20 mph, it’s telling you to get yourself into fourth gear. Whereas, I wouldn’t
be anywhere near fourth gear at 20 mph normally. But, I’ve tried to drive the car as I normally
would, so I’m not sort’ve going super slow. I’m just driving it as normal. Because we
want to try and give a fair reflection of what the mpg is going to be in normal driving
conditions. As a driver, is there any point in selecting Economy Mode? From what I’ve
read, some things I’ve read and heard, perhaps there isn’t. You’re not going to be getting
massive savings, or much better fuel economy, by being in Economy Mode. What’s this commute
actually got me? What’s the return got me on Economy Mode? So, VW say that combined
mpg for a Golf R should be 37.7mpg – combined. I’ve actually got, on that 32 mile journey,
34.6mpg. So, that’s pretty good. Let me show you, just to prove I’m not lying. So, my camera
work’s up to Phil’s standards. As you can see there, I’m in Economy Mode. That little
button there, that’s my distance – 32 miles. 55 minutes. An average speed of 35 mph. And
an average mpg of 34.6. That’s not too shabby. So, tomorrow I’m going to be selecting Normal
Mode. I’m going to be going back to work and we’ll see what we get out of the Normal Mode. So, we’re on day number two. Journey number
two. So, we’ve done Economy Mode, and now I’m going to switch the car into Normal Mode.
Drive to work, same route that I drove coming home yesterday, and we’ll see the differences
in the fuel economy on this leg. And the drive as well, we’ll have a little look. So, let’s
switch her over into Normal Mode. So, let’s get to work and we’ll see if there’s any difference.
I’m not convinced there’s going to be… but let’s have a go! Okay, so I’ve just got to work now. So, last
night I drove home in the Economy Mode and – as I said – I got a combined mpg of 34.6.
So, I’ve switched over to Normal Mode – normal driving mode – this morning to come in to
work. So, same route, same distance. Traffic conditions were very, very similar. It was
pretty clear, a good run, we’re trying to keep the driving styles as real-world as possible.
There’s no point, as I said, there’s no point driving along at 55 mph on the motorway to
try and get a maximum mpg because, realistically, nobody’s going to do it, and certainly nobody’s
going to do that in a Golf R. So, differences between – in terms of the feel and the drive,
between Economy and Normal. None, in all honesty. I didn’t feel any real difference between
the two. That Golf R engine note, definitely still not there when you’re driving it in
Normal Mode like it is when you’re in Race Mode. In terms of the actual feel of the car,
I don’t see any difference between the two. If there wasn’t a little symbol there in the
top-left hand corner of the media screen telling me that I was in Normal Mode, I would have
no idea that I’m driving in Normal Mode as opposed to Economy. There’s, I don’t feel,
any real difference between the two. So, the question is, what was the average mpg that
I achieved on this journey? So, I got 34.6 in Economy Mode and in Normal Mode, I got
34.3! So, ever, ever so slightly less. That could be anything, that could just be down
to the fact that maybe I sat in a little bit more traffic one time versus the other. But
there’s nothing in that. Absolutely nothing between the difference between the two. So,
it’s going to be really interesting tonight when I’m going home [to see] what I actually
get mpg-wise in Race Mode because, for me, unless it was significantly less – being in
Race Mode than either in Normal or Economy Mode – there’s no way that I’d be having my
Golf R in anything other than Race Mode. Or, at least setting it up individually and just
playing around with it. I wouldn’t be driving around in either the Normal or Economy Mode.
And, like I say, unless I’m getting massively, massively better mpg. Let’s face it, you’re
not driving a Golf R for its fuel economy, y’know, that’s not the reason you’ve got a
Golf R. But, you don’t want something which is ridiculous on juice. You need to find that
happy medium. So, yeah – let’s see what we get with the Race Mode! So, I’m on the final leg of my test to see
if there’s a huge difference between the three main driving modes in the Golf R. The Economy,
Normal and Race Mode. So, I’ve done Economy – I got a combined mpg of 34.6 – Normal gave
me a combined mpg of 34.3 – so, I’m just about to switch her over to Race Mode and we’ll
see if there’s much of a drop in that combined mpg. I don’t think there will be. I wanna
put that out there, I don’t think there’s going to be a massive reduction in that combined
mpg. So, let’s see. I know it’s going to be a bit more fun, it’s going to sound nicer
to drive it. I know that for sure. And it’s going to feel a bit stiffer in the suspension
– better going around the corners. So, anyway, let’s switch it over, let’s get home and then
we’ll conclude our test. So, I’m gunna need…… you. So, that concludes the final leg of my journey.
Firstly, I’ll tell you a bit about what I thought about driving in Race Mode over Economy
and Normal. As I said before, the Economy and Normal Mode, I couldn’t tell any difference
between the two when I was driving it. They might as well have been exactly the same.
Made no difference whatsoever. Race Mode, yeah. That was fun. Just the engine sound,
just through the cabin of the car. It just made it a lot of fun to drive. Now, if you
would be able to live with that sound all the time, I don’t know, but that’s where the
individual settings really kick in and you can basically mix and match between Race,
Comfort and Economy Modes as you like. So, you can turn off that sound and still keep
the stiffness of the dampers when it’s in Race Mode. But, it was difficult – I was trying
to keep the driving styles very, very similar so we could get a fair and accurate result
in this little test. It was quite difficult to do when you’re in Race Mode. I wanted to…
I did want to put my foot down a lot when I didn’t necessarily have the urge to do that
in the Economy and Normal Mode. So, it was a bit difficult to try and keep it at that
fair and even test, but I did it and I managed it, and now I can have a good play with this
car now and really get to know the Race Mode in a bit more detail. What was the combined
mpg when I put it in Race Mode? So, as I said before Economy we got 34.6 mpg, combined and
Normal 34.3. I didn’t think there was going to be a massive difference / drop when you
put it in Race Mode and I’m pleased to say I am right! We got a combined mpg of 33.2,
which is nothing. So, for that extra fun feeling when you’re driving I could definitely live
with that little dip in fuel economy. And, it just goes to show, y’know, if you have
a two litre petrol engine (2.0 TSI) 310 brake horse power like this Golf R, or you have
a 1.6 110 brake horse power diesel engine, ultimately your driving style is going to
reflect its economy. So, if you thrash either of those cars, you’re going to get a pretty
naff combined mpg coming back. If you’re driving normally, and a little bit more sensibly,
then you’re going to get a much better fuel economy when you’re driving the car. So, these
settings – are they a bit of a gimmick? I think so. But, what do you think? Let me know
in the comment section below. If you think they are… if I’m missing something, if I’m
completely off target on this one, or if you agree with me. Are these different driving
modes in the Golf R a waste of time? A bit of a gimmick? Or is there more to it? I think
they’re a bit of a gimmick, personally. But, that’s just my opinion! I might change my
mind as I drive the car more over the next few days. I’m probably going to play around
with the individual mode a little bit as well. So, that’s where I might see the benefit in
being able to select between the modes. So, as always we hope you’ve enjoyed this
video. If you have, don’t forget to Like, Share and Subscribe if you don’t already.
See you again soon!

61 thoughts on “TESTED 2018 Golf R Fuel Economy + All Modes

  1. Great Vid Dave. Thanks for doing it. Just goes to show that all these different 'modes' are all well and good, but it's how we actually drive that has a far greater influence on mpg, that how the car is set up. I think these 'modes' encourage us drive a certain way, and it's that distinction that makes us drive differently that effects mpg. The 'modes' themselves seem to do very little in terms of having an effect on the car itself, more of how we perceive, as motorists, that we should drive the vehicle in that particular mode. It's almost like having certain music on in the car, has been proven to effect peoples driving styles. Similar concept.

  2. would like to see this test on a clear highway using cruise control to get a better idea but that's not always possible i guess..

  3. Chuckling at day two – all suited & booted, then for the drive – a blue tee… and back to the suit for the day in the office πŸ˜‚

    Joking aside a good informative video thanks Dave. Is the coasting feature only on the DSG’s? In my current A3 8V SB with S-tronic, I notice the difference in eco and this is mainly due to coasting I feel.

    Would be interesting to see how a DSG performs on the same journey.

    (Nearly got the nights shots too) πŸ˜‰

  4. Great video.

    This would be interesting to test this with the DSG in auto mode. I think there would be a much bigger impact. πŸ™‚

  5. Hi, I have an R and i can tell you that if you drive longer distances you will see between 10 and 15 % difference using race mode. It is when you floor it for motorway over taking. In Eco mode, it hold the gears for only a short period of time. Before you know it your in sixth. In race mode you want even get to sixth. My advice is Eco for commuting and race for empty late night or early starts. Like you say you can always add the sound in Eco or normal modes, by using google individual.

  6. So Eco mode is only available on DCC cars? I don't have that on mine.
    I'm not sure I'd say gimmick because the steering gets a little heavier too in race but that said race offers no performance boost. I'm glad you did this video. I've always thought there was very little difference, if any at all in performance. Yet reviewers always say there is a difference.
    The truth is revealed. It's not a performance deference, it's a difference in experience, noise, stiffness and steering weight.

  7. Hi Dave, Good video. I have the DSG Estate doing roughly the same milage as you. I notice a massive difference in the fuel, power and drive when switching between the different modes. I'm kind of glad to notice such a difference and the power under your foot. When in Race mode there is far to much power for my wife. She feels much more comfortable when she jumps in the car and drives in Eco/Normal. It also means I can use that saved petrol in race mode πŸ™‚

  8. If you do the same in a DSG with DCC you will see a difference between not only the mpg but the driving experience as well.

  9. Great ! 34 is definitely nice and not so far off my current CC 170 Diesel that runs about 38. I look forward to testing all this myself in 2 weeks when I get my R! Keep up the great videos Dave !

  10. An irrelevant test without using a DSG. The DSG drives per the mode selected not the person in the car. For example eco DSG disengages clutch regularly, normal mode changes up asap, and race mode obviously holds lower gears longer for better response (amongst others). None of this is in effect in the manual.

  11. Can you get the different driving modes in the new R even if you don't buy the DCC option? If yes then I guess the different driving modes only influence steering stiffness, throttle response and gear changing (suspensions remain always in the same settings)?
    How comfortable/sporty are the suspentions of the R without DCC?

  12. We tried this with our DSG yesterday. 65 miles each direction – south London, M25, A21 dual & single carriageway. 36.3 mpg there in Normal, 31.0 mpg back in Race. (We left it in Race even in the traffic queues to be a fair comparison!) Normal got up to 37.9 mpg cruising on the motorway.

  13. Other than race mode I feel the other modes are pointless.. drive it everywhere in race mode, take full control of gear box yourself so you can change when you want to

  14. I believe the difference for the manual car is just the throttle characteristic – Race is what's referred to as a 'Quick Opening' characteristic, Normal is an 'Equal percentage' characteristic and Eco is a 'Modified Equal Percent' curve. If you have the DSG then you'll get differing shift points.

  15. I think you made a valid point about race vs the lesser modes which would make it easier to get better mpg – that there's no urge to put your foot down when there's little power anyway. This encourages more economical driving to get better mpg as ecodriving is all you can do! Impressed anyway as this car is quicker to 60 than some w12 bentleys that barely better 15mpg.

  16. So here in the states – we just have comfort, normal, race and custom. The best I’ve gotten is 22 in normal and comfort. But that’s mostly city driving. Should I get it checked out?

  17. Nice one fella and at last a bloke who talk proper about car with no bullshit. I have a Clubsport Gti 3 door DSG and your economy is more or less the same, infact yours is a little better. The only difference in Economy Setting with the DSG Box is if you take tour foot off the DSG goes into free wheel mode just the same as a pushbike, engine drops to idle and freewheels like a pushbike, nice one fella, enjoyed that.

  18. Did he mention the dampening ? And the ease/ toughness in steering wheel during modes also? Aside from the silly tones. Lol. Which I like. But he was obsessed.

  19. I have a Canadian model. Treating it sweet in eco mode we get 23.5 mpg USG. It must be the fuel here. Our octane hi is 91. I'm thinking thats the difference???? thoughts???

  20. i have no idea how you manage such a good fuel consumption in this car.. i have the 2018 GTI which is supposed to have a combined MPG of 44 as apposed to your 37 in the R.. in the real world i drive like a complete granny in ECO mode and only manage 24 mpg… in no traffic, without a heavy foot.. impossible to even touch 30 MPG for me even when driving very conservatively .

  21. Good video, Worth saying that you have a manual and the different modes dont affect the gears that much, if at all. tho the dsg each mode has an affect on the gears, eco and race mode especially. Dsg would be a good seperate vid just to see. πŸ‘πŸΌ

  22. What does the long term mpg read? Short journeys doesn't count in my experience. U will probably be 28 mpg if your sensible ish?

  23. It's not a pointless test. It really shows if there is a change in engine mapping, timing, how much fuel is being delivered. Good to see a test without just changing up the shift points like a dsg would show

  24. On my manual 2015 golf r you really see the difference when motorway driving using the ACC.
    The "Eco mode" loses speed much slower when you lower the selected speed and gains speed much slower when you raise the selected speed……….can be be worrying on sections of the m25/smart motorways with cameras as simply selecting a lower speed means a long time until it decreases…..
    I can say using the "Auto Hold" and "Eco mode" saves money in start/stop driving in towns/city's with out doubt.

  25. Mine said after 2000 miles the average was 26 thats with using only v power. And with a heavy foot:) the best was 34 driving normal. It's never even been in eco who

  26. Everyone always review the bloody sound, and you are doing an excellent job, one that matters. Thank you. Can you do the same on RS3 & 4/5 Audi as well as C43 & 63 Merc thats if you can get your hands on those.

  27. The sound is fake in a golf R. It is piped in through the speakers. So that is simply switched off when not in race

  28. I have the manual 7.5 R and it doesn't really make any difference to my economy what mode I have it in, so I use race mode pretty much all the time, drive it pretty hard, and have been averaging 35.8mpg long term.

  29. Hi. The 2018 golf r is 293 BHP, not 310. I believe. sorry to point this out, but correct me if I'm wrong. Great vid though

  30. On my golf GTD, you feel a difference when you put it in the 3 different modes, in eco, it feels sluggish when you put your foot down, it changes at the lower revs possible and will cut the power to the engine, the second you stop.if you put it in cruise mode it will also cost when ever possible to save petrol.

    In normal mode its faster, and it only cuts power to the engine if you stop for a long time.

    In sports mode, the acceleration is much faster and you hear the engine more, also the stop start does not wrok because the car assumes you going to speed off.

  31. Once u changed the mode to race mode do u have to shift the gear stick to the sports mode? from the video u only changed the drive mode to race but did u change the gear stick?

  32. Interesting video thanks for posting. I recently (just last month) got rid of my old petrol Mk 2 Audi TT and bought a new diesel 2.0 litre Golf GT with a 7 speed DSG auto gear box. This was because I am now doing a daily commute much like yours of 70 miles round trip (perhaps just a fraction more). I am still playing around with the driving modes but I am consistently getting an average of over 65 miles per gallon, mostly using economy mode when on the M5. Even in economy I still feel as though there is a load of response and i have no trouble passing anything. I’m going to try doing what you did with the modes and see if there is any major difference. Cheers.

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