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2015 Volkswagen Golf R: No handicap here (CNET On Cars, Episode 68)

In this episode: the latest VW Golf R explored; the truth about handhelds behind the wheel; fix that overnight battery leak; and top five fuel-sipping V8s.

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In this episode:

  • 2015 Volkswagen Golf R
  • Smarter Driver: The truth about handhelds behind the wheel
  • How To: Diagnose an electrical "leak" in your car
  • Email: Exploding sunroofs
  • Top 5: Fuel-efficient V8s

I remember the first time I drove a GTI, back in the late 70s, and nothing was quite like it: affordable enough that I could at least imagine owning one, and with a taut liveliness I've come to associate with German cars ever since. Getting our hands on the latest hot Golf, the R, took me back. Our full review is here and, side from the suckage that is the car's head unit, it scored very well.

We assume "everyone" is out there texting/Facebooking/emailing and driving but in fact the observed percentages of drivers doing so is quite small. That belies the fact that it nonetheless rolls up into a large number of cars that are accidents waiting to happen. We explain in this episode and the full data is here.

We've had a few emails about viewers' car batteries dying overnight. So when I found myself diagnosing exactly that problem in one of the cars in the Cooley Garage it made for the perfect time to lay out what I think is the best video How To on tackling the problem you are going to see. Bookmark it at the Archive tab of -- you're going to need it one day, I fear.