2019 Volkswagen e-Golf vs. 2019 Toyota Mirai

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The e-Golf has standard whiplash protection, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the whiplash protection system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The Mirai doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

The e-Golf has a standard Automatic Post-Collision Braking System, which automatically applies the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The Mirai doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.

Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The e-Golf SEL Premium has standard Maneuver Braking that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The Mirai doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.

Both the e-Golf and the Mirai have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, rear parking sensors and rear cross-path warning.

Warranty

The e-Golf’s corrosion warranty is 7 years longer than the Mirai’s (12 vs. 5 years).

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the e-Golf gets better fuel mileage than the Mirai (126 city/111 hwy vs. 67 city/67 hwy MPGe).

Brakes and Stopping

The e-Golf stops much shorter than the Mirai:

e-Golf

Mirai

70 to 0 MPH

175 feet

194 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

122 feet

130 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

The e-Golf has a standard space-saver spare tire so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the Mirai; it requires you to depend on roadside assistance and your vehicle will have to be towed.

Suspension and Handling

For superior ride and handling, the Volkswagen e-Golf has fully independent front and rear suspensions. An independent suspension allows the wheels to follow the road at the best angle for gripping the pavement, without compromising ride comfort. The Toyota Mirai has a rear torsion beam axle, with a semi-independent rear suspension.

The e-Golf has standard front and rear stabilizer bars, which help keep the e-Golf flat and controlled during cornering. The Mirai’s suspension doesn’t offer a rear stabilizer bar.

The e-Golf has vehicle speed sensitive variable-assist power steering, for low-effort parking, better control at highway speeds and during hard cornering, and a better feel of the road. The Mirai doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.

The e-Golf SE handles at .86 G’s, while the Mirai pulls only .76 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

The e-Golf executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the Mirai (27.9 seconds @ .61 average G’s vs. 28.8 seconds @ .57 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the e-Golf’s turning circle is 1.6 feet tighter than the Mirai’s (35.8 feet vs. 37.4 feet).

Chassis

The Volkswagen e-Golf may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 600 pounds less than the Toyota Mirai.

The e-Golf is 2 feet shorter than the Mirai, making the e-Golf easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

The design of the Volkswagen e-Golf amounts to more than styling. The e-Golf has an aerodynamic coefficient of drag of .27 Cd. That is lower than the Mirai (.29) and many sports cars. A more efficient exterior helps keep the interior quieter and helps the e-Golf get better fuel mileage.

Passenger Space

Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the EPA rates the e-Golf a Compact car, while the Mirai is rated a Subcompact.

The e-Golf has standard seating for 5 passengers; the Mirai can only carry 4.

The e-Golf has 7.8 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Mirai (93.5 vs. 85.7).

The e-Golf has 1.6 inches more front shoulder room, 1.3 inches more rear headroom, 5.5 inches more rear legroom and .4 inches more rear shoulder room than the Mirai.

Cargo Capacity

The e-Golf has a much larger trunk with its rear seat up than the Mirai (22.8 vs. 12.8 cubic feet).

The e-Golf’s standard rear seats fold to accommodate long and bulky cargo. The Mirai doesn’t offer folding rear seats.

Ergonomics

The e-Golf has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The Mirai doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

The power windows standard on both the e-Golf and the Mirai have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the e-Golf is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The Mirai prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.

If the windows are left open on the e-Golf the driver can close them all at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows with the driver’s door power window switch. The driver of the Mirai can only close the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the e-Golf has a standard rear wiper. The Mirai doesn’t offer a rear wiper.

To help drivers avoid possible obstacles, the e-Golf SEL Premium has standard cornering lights to illuminate around corners when the turn signals are activated. The Mirai doesn’t offer cornering lights.

The e-Golf SEL Premium’s Parking Steering Assistant can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Mirai doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Recommendations

The Golf was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Ten” for 13 of the last 13 years. The Mirai has never been a Car and Driver “Top Ten” pick.

Motor Trend selected the Golf as their 2015 Car of the Year. The Mirai has never been chosen.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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