VW to sell Bluemotion Golfs in China from first quarter of 2012 image

Europe’s largest automaker Volkswagen AG plans to sell its Golf Bluemotion in China from the first quarter of 2012.

You can still buy a 1.6 TDI without Bluemotion. Don’t bother. For an extra £785 (UK), the BlueMotion is much more sensible, and makes you wonder why more cars don’t get the eco treatment as standard.

Thanks to a number of mechanical refinements and aerodynamic revisions, the super-efficient ‘stop-start’ Golf Bluemotion burns a scant 3.8 litres of diesel per 100km. Figures like that will appeal to a lot of buyers, but it’s available in manual only – there is no auto.

It’s the same engine that runs in the entry-level Golf diesel, except for the Bluemotion it’s got a modified crankshaft, cylinder head and oil pump, an intelligent alternator that runs faster while you’re braking or decelerating for a mild form of regenerative braking, and a starter-generator for automatic stop-start.

Buying a low-emissions car has always been seen as something of a compromise – whether it be equipment levels, styling or refinement, something had to give. But a few minutes spent with the Golf is enough to realise that’s simply not the case anymore.

For the moment no price was indicated by the automaker for the Chinese Golf Bluemotion