The Volkswagen Golf is a car. But it is not the only car that is a Volkswagen Golf.

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The Golf’s Guigiaro-penned design is so archetypal for a modern two-box hatchback that there are a whole host of cars that drive like a Golf, look like a Golf, act like a Golf. They’re like variations on the same theme.

Some are a bit bigger, some are a bit smaller. Some are faster, some are slower. Some have front-wheel drive, some even came with rear-wheel drive. But they all played the part of Volkswagen Golf, one way or another.

One of my favorites is the Audi 50, which actually debuted in the same year as the Golf, in 1974. Volkswagen really only got its head out of its rear-engined ass when they bought Audi from Mercedes and absorbed Audi’s front-drive engineering work. The Audi 50 (and the Audi 80 before it) were sort of like proto-Golfs.

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What Golf that isn’t a Golf is your favorite?

Photo Credits: Audi


Contact the author at raphael@jalopnik.com.