Volkswagen Philippines launched the Santana GTS in May 2018, together with four other models in the brand’s lineup. The station wagon is currently available in one variant, which is the Comfortline. It is powered by a 1.5-liter four-cylinder in-line MPI gasoline engine attached to a 6-speed automatic transmission.
The Santana GTS could easily be mistaken for a hatchback however, it is categorized as a station wagon. It features a plain, simple, and straightforward design, true to Volkswagen’s classic aesthetic. Upfront, a large four-bar grille sits in the middle of the large halogen reflector headlamps. The bottom bumper is decked with a wide grille accented with chrome elements, stretching to the fog light housings. It rides on 6J x 15” alloys with 185/60 R15 tires. On the roof are rails to magnify its station wagon look.
The interior of the Volkswagen Santana GTS is primarily decked in a black and gray color palette with red accents. A red line cuts across the dashboard and can be found on the stitching of the seats. The seats are upholstered in a combination of premium leather and fabric, staying true to the brand’s timeless aesthetic.
To create more cargo space, the rear seats can be folded in a 60:40 ratio. Doing so can increase the cargo space from 372 liters to 1,255 liters. The Santana GTS also features a sunroof that allows more natural light and ventilation into the cabin. The control dial for the sunroof can be conveniently found together with the climate controls and steering wheel controls.
Technology & Safety Features
Volkswagen built the Santana GTS with the bare necessities in terms of infotainment technology. It features a head unit capable of Bluetooth, Aux, and USB connectivity, however, for those who are looking for a more dynamic audio system, a Blaupunkt Infotainment system is available for a minimal additional amount.
The Santana GTS is also equipped with a cruise control mode to make highway drives more convenient. It also has an auto start/stop function designed for fuel efficiency. In terms of safety, the wagon comes with standard rear parking sensors which can be upgraded with cameras together with the Blaupunkt system.
Platform & Chassis
The station wagon rides on a Volkswagen Group A05+ Platform with a front-engine, front-wheel-drive layout, powered by a 1.5-liter gasoline engine. The station wagon is equipped with McPherson suspension at the front and composite torsion beam semi-independent suspension at the rear. Brakes are ventilated discs up front and drum brakes at the rear.
Engine & Drivetrain
The Santana GTS houses a 1.5-liter naturally aspirated gasoline engine that produces 108 hp and 150 Nm of torque. The engine is attached to a 6-speed automatic transmission, which is the only available option in the market to date. In traffic, the vehicle gives a bit of hesitation in moving forward. However, it can get up to speed quite smoothly in clearer roads.
One of the primary benefits of the Santana GTS is its fuel efficiency that proves to be economical. In heavy traffic, fuel economy figures are at 7.6 km/L while it delivers 22.4 km/L in highway drives with the cruise control mode.