Displaying items by tag: Volkswagen

Volkswagen ID. Life, which debuted at the Munich Motor Show, is a concept of a compact urban crossover that provides insight into a production car that should arrive on the market during 2025 with an affordable price, but also with a lot of power.

The high price of electric cars has aroused many skeptics about the future, but Volkswagen claims it has a solution. Due to the well-known affair with diesels, the German company first started with huge investments in electromobility, and that is now coming to fruition.

ID concept. The life shown in Munich is a real "car for the people", because it brings electromobility at an affordable price. However, don't think that the price of 20,000 euros means that this car is intended for easy transport from point A to point B. Quite the opposite, because it is powered by an electric motor that develops 234 hp, which, as Volkswagen claims, is enough to accelerate from 0 to 100 km / h in less than 7 seconds. Unlike the ID model. 3 and ID. 4, which in the basic version have rear-wheel drive, the electric motor in this concept transmits power to the front axle.

ID. Life uses a specially tuned version of the MEB platform with a shorter wheelbase of 2,650 mm. The design of this concept has a lot of similarities with other models from the ID range, but in a minimalist style. The concept also has a removable roof, which reduces weight and contributes to greater range. When it comes to range, the 57 kWh battery provides an autonomy of about 400 kilometers according to the WLTP standard.

The minimalist design continues in the cabin as well. The driver can find all the information on the instrument panel that is part of the steering wheel, as well as on the head-up display. There is no screen on the center console, but it is intended for the mobile phone to serve as a screen for controlling the infotainment system. The materials inside the vehicle are largely recycled, and Volkswagen has also offered an innovative solution for those moments when you are waiting for the car to charge.

Namely, the game console and projector are part of the standard equipment, and the screen is a canvas that can be pulled out and placed in front of the windshield. So VW ID. Life becomes a cinema or gaming station, so you can easily have fun while the car is on the charger.
When the serial version appears on the market in a few years, it is expected that the basic model with the announced price of 20,000 euros will have a very modest list of options, but it will be fully equipped. The reason lies in the possibility of unlocking additional content, because it will be possible to include a number of options by paying a surcharge via the Internet.

Volkswagen has once again justified its name, and if the production version has the performance, autonomy and technology of this concept, we are sure that it will be a real revolution in the transition to electromobility.

Published in Blog/News
Tagged under

Nearly as large as the compact Tiguan, the Taos is an attractive new entry point for VW's crossover lineup.


The all-new 2022 Volkswagen Taos is the product of a familiar pattern in the car business. As a particular vehicle segment grows in popularity (in this case, crossovers), manufacturers tend to enlarge and differentiate their entries to make room for new models that fill the newly created gaps in their lineup. With VW's range of SUVs in the United States swelling to include the compact Tiguan, mid-size Atlas and Atlas Cross Sport, and the electric ID.4 (sort of an SUV, we guess), a vacancy opened up in the increasingly popular subcompact space, among the likes of the Jeep Compass, Kia Seltos, and Subaru Crosstrek. It also helps that VW won't be offering Americans a regular TSI version of its latest Golf hatchback, which we're still sore about. At least the Taos is a compelling little crossover on most fronts.

2022 volkswagen taos sel rear

"Little" is sort of misleading, though, as the Taos is one of the larger players in its class. Its MQB-based architecture rests atop a wheelbase of either 105.6 inches for the all-wheel-drive variant or 105.9 inches for the front-driver. It has a huge back seat for a subcompact SUV, and its capacious and easily accessible cargo hold can swallow 25 cubic feet of stuff behind the rear seats (28 cubes if you forgo all-wheel drive). On the road, if you don't know to look for its distinguishing design cues—a broad LED lightbar that connects the standard LED headlights plus chrome TAOS lettering on the rear liftgate—you can easily mistake it for a (slightly) larger Tiguan. VW says the name Taos refers to the rugged, picturesque town in New Mexico. We didn't go there for our drive, but we did traverse our local Michigan haunts in both of the vehicle's primary configurations.

2022 volkswagen taos sel interior

HIGHS: Cavernous interior for a small SUV, impressive fuel economy, attractive base price.

Powering the Taos is a new 1.5-liter version of the EA211 turbocharged inline-four—a 1.4-liter EA211 is found in the Jetta sedan. Aided by the boost of a variable-geometry turbocharger, the engine purrs willingly to its 6400-rpm redline and produces a respectable-if-not-quite-spirited 158 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque, the latter from just 1750 rpm. That's less grunt than you'll get from a top-spec 175-hp Seltos 1.6T or a 250-hp Mazda CX-30 Turbo, but it's perfectly adequate for casually merging onto highways. Standard front-wheel-drive models pair the turbo-four with a conventional eight-speed automatic transmission. All-wheel-drive versions get a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic, which VW calls a direct-shift gearbox (DSG). The company says this split allowed it to focus both on greater fuel efficiency with the eight-speed and a sportier driving character with the dual clutch.

2022 volkswagen taos sel
Our test car was a front-wheel-drive SEL model, which ambled to 60 mph in 7.4 seconds and covered the quarter-mile in 15.8 seconds at 87 mph, making it slightly quicker than the latest Subaru Crosstrek with a 2.5-liter flat-four and significantly fleeter than a Jeep Compass. The more-powerful turbocharged Kia Seltos, however, is roughly a half-second quicker both to 60 and through the quarter-mile.

That said, the front-drive Taos is the fuel miser's choice, earning an EPA combined estimate of 31 mpg, versus 28 mpg for all-wheel-drive models. Our example fared well in the real world with a 30-mpg average, and it posted an impressive 40 mpg on our 75-mph highway test, beating its federal rating by 4 mpg. Both the aforementioned Subaru and Kia managed only 30 mpg on our highway run. But the all-wheel-drive model's DSG isn't as convincing in its role as a sporty transmission. While its shifts are generally quick and well-coordinated at speed, it lacks the eight-speed's unobtrusive smoothness, being relatively clumsy around town and under quick on-off-on throttle applications. Only all-wheel-drive variants get a drive-mode selector with Normal, Eco, Sport, and Individual settings, but even in its most aggressive mode the dual clutch hesitates between upshifts when accelerating briskly. There are no steering-wheel paddle shifters, so we mostly let the DSG pick its own gears rather than use the shifter's sluggish manual gate.

2022 volkswagen taos sel

LOWS: Modest performance, some cheap-looking interior plastics, clumsy optional dual-clutch transmission.

The other significant difference between the two drivelines is the rear suspension. The front-wheel-drive Taos features a torsion beam at the rear, while the all-wheel-drive model employs a multilink setup. This is why there are two wheelbase lengths. The multilink's greater composure and more substantial feel make the all-wheel-drive Taos our clear choice. Though the all-wheel-drive Taos adds a claimed 255 pounds of additional mass, its more sophisticated suspension fosters greater driver confidence by bringing better body control. We'll have to wait for a second test car to see if this more-refined character translates to better grip than the modest 0.83 g that the front-driver exhibited on the skidpad.

Braking ability is adequate and is controlled via an easy-to-modulate pedal, despite some mushiness in the first inch or so or travel. We recorded a so-so 176-foot stop from 70 mph. All of the examples we've driven have rolled on 18-inch wheels (17s are standard, 19s are optional), with our test car's wrapped with Bridgestone Turanza LS100 all-season tires. With decent ride comfort and reasonably low levels of interior noise—68 decibels at a 70-mph cruise; 73 at full throttle—road isolation is good for a vehicle that starts at $24,190. Just don't expect Golf levels of agility from the Taos's extra girth and higher center of gravity.

2022 volkswagen taos sel
From the low liftover height of its cargo floor to its rear climate-control vents to its ability to easily accommodate six-plus-footers front and rear, the Taos's interior is highlighted by its functionality. This subcompact feels solidly built, and material quality is mostly commensurate with its price, although the hard, shiny plastic dashtop panel looks chintzy, especially in the top-spec SEL models that go for more than $30,000. While not boldly inspired, the Tao's cabin does benefit from contoured trim pieces and contrasting colors that lend it some character. Soft-touch materials are soft enough and well placed, and there's VW's familiar and nicely thick-rimmed steering wheel. Seating choices include cloth upholstery for base models, leather at the top of the range, and a leatherette/cloth combo with grippy inserts for mid-level SE trims. All offer good comfort and excellent visibility.

At 72.5 inches, the Taos is actually a hair wider than the one-size-up Tiguan and feels similarly spacious in terms of elbow space. Unlike the Tiguan, there's no available third row of seats. Base models get an 8.0-inch digital instrument cluster and a 6.5-inch center touchscreen, with the displays in higher trims increasing to 10.3 and 8.0 inches, respectively. We like that the Taos sticks with VW's more familiar infotainment system rather than adopting the newer, less-intuitive version in the ID.4 that we're still warming up to. Ambient lighting, automatic headlights, and VW's App Connect smartphone integration system all are standard.


2022 volkswagen taos sel
Additional microprocessors control the IQ.Drive bundle of active-safety features: stop-and-go adaptive cruise control with semi-automated assistance, active blind-spot monitoring, lane-keeping assist, automatic forward-collision warning, and emergency braking. IQ.Drive is a $895 to $995 option on lesser S and SE trims and standard on the top SEL. Notable extras include a heated steering wheel, a panoramic sunroof, and a yet-to-be-released Basecamp appearance package that will add a touch of off-road flair.

Coincidentally, the starter S model's competitive $24,190 base price is the same as that of the outgoing Golf hatchback that the Taos more or less replaces. Budget $28,440 for the SE trim and a somewhat substantial $32,685 for an SEL model like our test car, plus another $1450 to $2045 if you want all-wheel drive. Depending on the configuration, those prices position the Taos awfully close to certain versions of the grander Tiguan, which starts at $26,440. Yet, considering the Taos's generous packaging and strong roster of equipment, potential Tiguan buyers won't have to sacrifice much if they step down to this new lower rung in the brand's model range. The Taos isn't the fun-to-drive substitute for the Golf that we'd prefer, but it does make a solid anchor for VW's SUV lineup.


Published in Volkswagen
Monday, 02 August 2021 10:40

New Volkswagen T-Roc Active 2021 review

The new Volkswagen T-Roc Active trim adds extra kit to the small SUV for not much more money


Active trim adds worthwhile extra kit and boosts the level of value on offer in the T-Roc range. It’s an attractive small SUV that’s complemented by enough tech, comfort and fundamentally sound driving dynamics, but we’d save even more money and go for the more efficient 1.0 TSImanual model, which will still offer enough power for most users.

Special editions sometimes mean that sales are slow. After all, why would you risk tweaking something that is making money? However, the application of a new Active trim level has occurred right across the Volkswagen range, and the manufacturer’s T-Roc compact SUV has definitely benefited from these alterations – or more to the point, customers have.

That’s because at £27,490 for this 1.5-litre TSI 150 EVO car equipped with VW’s seven-speed dual-clutch automatic DSG gearbox, the Active model is only £300 more expensive than SE trim, yet it comes with extra kit to the value of £2,160 if you were going to add it as optional extras.

This includes a winter pack, featuring heated seats, a powered tailgate, foglights, tinted windows and standard-fit sat-nav as part of the eight-inch touchscreen infotainment set-up. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are included on SE trim as well as with Active, which might be many people’s preferred choice for navigation.

Other standard items include adaptive cruise control, front and rear parking sensors, autonomous braking and lane assist, plus two-zone climate control.

It is worth mentioning that, while Active trim does add plenty of features, one option that’s still worth specifying is the £445 10.3-inch digital dashboard.

This new trim also brings some cosmetic upgrades, including lots of Active badging outside, Active sill plates and puddle lighting, and 17-inch wheels. They’re small tweaks that you might not notice, but with a contrast roof our car looked smart.

From behind the wheel the Active is no different to any other T-Roc, which means that the 148bhp 1.5-litre TSI turbo engine is smooth and pulls well from low down. Sometimes the DSG gearbox is a bit too eager to kick down if you go beyond around 50 per cent throttle, but at a relaxed pace it shifts smoothly and early. It’s an equally easy-going partner to the engine, which delivers easily accessible performance in a sustained surge and with not too much in the way of engine noise either.

The ride is fine on 17-inch alloys. The T-Roc is based on the same MQB A0 platform as VW’s Polo supermini, and while the ride is sometimes a little bobbly, it’s mostly good. Some tyre roar at higher speed impacts refinement, but comfort is a commodity the T-Roc offers in large enough quantities for an everyday SUV.

It’s also relatively precise when it comes to handling. Cars like the Ford Puma or MINI Countryman will be more fun from behind the wheel, yet the T-Roc’s light but precise steering and good level of grip mean it delivers enough dynamically. As a result,while it rarely feels inspiring or encourages you to drive it a little more enthusiastically, it also rarely feels out of its depth.

On that subject, we know most people looking at SUVs in this sector will buy on finance anyway, so with a monthly cost of £274 based on a three-year PCP deal limited to 10,000 miles per year and a 20-per-cent deposit, the T-Roc Active is an affordable model, even if the lesser 1.0-litre TSI 110 manual car would be more than adequate in performance terms,  more efficient and cheaper still to buy.

 The powertrain doesn’t affect the practicality on offer though. So, with a rear cabin that can accommodate two adults but is better suited to children, plus a fair 445-litre boot that eclipses a VW Golf’s (it’s understandable why people buy SUVs when you analyse the info), the T-Roc is a fairly versatile machine. It should cover most bases, including if you’re after a small lifestyle SUV, as the Active name suggests.
Model: Volkswagen T-Roc 1.5 TSI EVO DSG Active
Price: £27,490
Engine: 1.5-litre 4cyl turbo petrol
Power/torque: 148bhp/250Nm
Transmission: Seven-speed dual-clutch auto, front-wheel drive
0-62mph: 8.6 seconds
Top speed: 127mph
Economy: 44.1mpg
CO2: 148g/km
On sale: Now


Published in Volkswagen
Thursday, 29 July 2021 06:15

Volkswagen T-Cross SUV review

“The Volkswagen T-Cross is one of the class leaders in the small SUV sector”

Volkswagen offers a wider choice of SUVs than most manufacturers, with six different models and more in the pipeline. The T-Cross is the smallest and cheapest, sitting below the T-Roc, Tiguan, Tiguan Allspace, the electric ID.4 and the flagship Touareg. It aims to capitalise on the current demand for compact yet practical SUVs, and joins a class saturated with excellent rivals, including the Ford Puma, Skoda Kamiq, Renault Captur, Nissan Juke, Hyundai Bayon and Citroen C3 Aircross.

The Volkswagen T-Cross is an all-new model, but under the skin it's very similar to the SEAT Arona, Volkswagen Polo and Skoda Fabia. It borrows some of its styling cues from the T-Roc, and looks to imitate the Touareg with its wide grille. Whichever angle you approach it from, the T-Cross is clearly from the VW stable, and does just enough to stand out in a sea of similarly sized rivals. Volkswagen concentrates on making smart-looking, well built, practical cars, and the T-Cross is simply the latest product of that approach.

For its first foray into the hotly contested small SUV class, VW has given the T-Cross some bold details. Its rear lights are surrounded by a thick, black swathe of trim, while the headlights are joined by a chrome strip that goes straight across the middle of the grille. Underneath, there are fog lights and daytime running lights, which look similar to those on the T-Roc, while T-Cross lettering stretches across the bootlid. Roof rails and black plastic wheel arch extensions give the T-Cross a rugged look.

Best small SUVs

Small SUVs have already been available for a few years now, but the T-Cross is looking to take top honours - thanks in part to the badge on the front. That alone will sell the car to many buyers, although it’s clear throughout that the T-Cross is aimed at the premium end of the class.

It combines VW’s typical sturdiness and planted feel with light steering that’s perfect in tight city streets. The T-Cross continues to drive well at speed without feeling too twitchy, which can be a side effect of light steering. It’s refined even up to motorway speeds, and keeps its composure over most bumps and small potholes. VW has certainly prioritised comfort over sportiness, which is what most small SUV buyers will prefer.

The 1.0-litre three-cylinder engine can occasionally feel sluggish below 2,500rpm, which means you’ll have to rev it hard sometimes - when joining a motorway, for example. Volkswagen introduced a punchier 148bhp 1.5-litre petrol engine at the start of 2020 but in truth, the 108bhp 1.0-litre engine will suit most buyers. The T-Cross has the option of a smooth DSG automatic gearbox - it’s a bit more expensive, but could be a great choice if you do most of your journeys in stop-start traffic.

The 1.0-litre petrol engine is offered with either 94 or 108bhp but whichever you pick it will return around 49mpg. This is pretty similar to most of its rivals but the DSG automatic does increase fuel consumption to around 45mpg. You’ll get a similar figure from the 148bhp petrol engine. A diesel engine was briefly available but it was expensive and wasn’t much more economical than the smaller petrol options.

Despite its size, the T-Cross offers space for five, and adults should be comfy in the outer rear seats thanks to lots more headroom than in the Polo. The rear seats slide forwards and backwards, so you can choose whether you want more space for passengers or luggage. It has a big boot, regardless of where you have the back seats, while those in the front will enjoy a classy dashboard with a standard eight-inch infotainment touchscreen.

The Volkswagen T-Cross certainly isn’t the first small SUV, but it’s now one of the ones to beat. It offers an impressive blend of style, comfort and peppy engines.

Volkswagen T-Cross SUV - MPG, running costs & CO2

The T-Cross is economical and should have excellent residual values

There was a time when SUVs were typified as being ‘gas guzzlers’, but the latest wave are often almost as economical as their hatchback counterparts. The Volkswagen T-Cross, which shares its engines with the Polo hatchback, should be very economical to run, even though it only comes with petrol power. It’s not a heavy car, despite its SUV bodystyle, and only comes with two-wheel-drive.

Many buyers are tempted by the VW badge on the front, and this means the T-Cross is set to offer great residual values - it should lose less of its value than some other cars in the same class.

Volkswagen T-Cross MPG & CO2

It's no longer possible to spec the Volkswagen T-Cross with a diesel engine, but the 1.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine is cheaper and should be economical enough for most people. Available on four of the six current trim levels, the entry-level 94bhp version returns up to 49.6mpg, the same as the 108bhp version (offered on all but S trims). Petrol versions of the Renault Captur manage around 45mpg, so you’ll struggle to notice a difference between the two cars at the pumps.

Volkswagen now sells the T-Cross with a more powerful 1.5-litre EVO TSI petrol engine. It has cylinder deactivation (under light throttle it’ll run on just two cylinders) to save fuel, but is only available with the DSG automatic gearbox. You can expect 47mpg from this engine, which is still pretty reasonable and even a little better than the claimed 44.8mpg figure of the 1.0-litre engine with an automatic gearbox.

A 94bhp diesel engine has previously been available but it made up a tiny proportion of sales. That’s not surprising when you consider it only offered around 5mpg more than the frugal petrols but cost a lot more to buy.

The T-Cross should be affordable to fill up and all variants are subject to the standard rate in VED (road tax) from the second year of ownership - the first year’s tax is usually rolled into the on-the-road price of the car.

Insurance groups

The T-Cross should be affordable to run, with insurance starting in group 8 for S and SE models with the 94bhp petrol engine. Top-spec R-Line models occupy 11-13, but the 1.5-litre petrol engine increases this to groups 16-17.

Considering the desirable badge, it’s impressive that the T-Cross is no more expensive to insure than the SEAT Arona, which also starts in insurance group 8E for 94bhp versions.


Like all new VW cars, the T-Cross benefits from a three-year/60,000 mile warranty, which is transferable to the next owner if you sell or return the car before the warranty expires. This warranty is fairly standard, although far from class-leading. Rivals such as the Hyundai Kona and Kia Stonic have five and seven-year warranties respectively, which is something to bear in mind if you plan to keep your car for a long time. You can buy extended warranties from VW, which work out at about £140 per year.

The T-Cross’ paint will be covered for three years, while the car also comes with a 12-year anti-corrosion guarantee.


Servicing the T-Cross should be relatively pain-free. Volkswagen has the third-largest dealership network in the UK. Service intervals should be the same as the Polo, so you’ll have to book it in for a service every year or 10,000 miles, whichever comes first.

As with all VW models, you’ll be able to take out a service plan, which’ll spread the cost of your next two services over 18 monthly payments of between £15-20. You can either pay this separately, or add it to your monthly finance payments if you’re not buying the car outright.

Volkswagen T-Cross SUV - Engines, drive & performance

The T-Cross is good to drive and impressively refined

Small SUVs are unlikely to be the dream vehicle for keen drivers, but the T-Cross easily competes with the current class leaders in this regard. It drives well, with pleasingly light steering and a comfortable ride. Over most bumps and bad surfaces it’s composed, and body roll is kept to a minimum through the majority of corners.

Like many other VW Group cars, the T-Cross isn’t built primarily to excite; its handling and driving experience is composed and careful, which inspires confidence in the car. The higher driving position compared to the Polo helps with seeing further ahead, and is one of the main reasons to buy an SUV over a standard hatchback. If you're after more fun behind the wheel, consider the Ford Puma.

Volkswagen T-Cross petrol engines

A 1.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine is the most popular option, with outputs of either 94 or 108bhp. While the latter is essentially the engine from the Volkswagen up! GTI, the T-Cross doesn’t provide mini-hot hatch performance. However, it manages 0-62mph in a smidge over 10 seconds, or 11.5 for the 94bhp version - the 108bhp engine is our pick.

Refinement is very impressive for such a small car. In fact, it feels very mature and capable. The higher-powered version offers a six-speed manual gearbox over a five-speed in the entry version, and the 108bhp engine is available with a slick DSG automatic gearbox at extra cost.

In January 2020, Volkswagen introduced a 148bhp 1.5-litre petrol engine to the range. It’s almost as efficient as the 1.0-litre, thanks to the ability to shut down half its cylinders when you’re not pressing the throttle hard, but the 0-62mph time improves to 8.5 seconds. Its top speed is 124mph.

Diesel engines

A diesel engine was available for a short time but, unsurprisingly, slow sales saw it withdrawn. The 94bhp 1.6-litre engine has been removed from the Polo range too. It prioritises efficiency over performance, and 0-62mph takes almost 12 seconds. No hybrid version is currently available to rival the Hyundai Kona or Renault Captur E-Tech, which is a shame. However, Volkswagen is planning to electrify most of its range, so a hybrid or pure electric version could be in the pipeline.

Volkswagen T-Cross SUV - Interior & comfort

The interior is a strength of the T-Cross, with plenty of tech on all versions

The VW T-Cross is one of the most expensive small SUVs available - for the price of the top-spec model, you could get a bigger and still well-equipped Volkswagen T-Roc - but the interior feels far more premium than rivals such as the Kia Stonic, Ford Puma and SEAT Arona. For buyers who don’t need a larger SUV but value premium materials, the T-Cross makes sense.

In terms of comfort, the T-Cross surpasses rivals too. It’s incredibly quiet on the move, making the cabin feel serene and relaxing. The T-Cross is well damped, ironing out most bumps - only large potholes will send a jolt through the cabin. There are many larger, more expensive SUVs that don’t manage to be so comfortable.

Volkswagen T-Cross dashboard

Volkswagen is known for its upmarket interiors, which is why many customers don’t mind paying a bit extra for a car with a VW badge. The T-Cross is no different, as it feels more plush and expensive inside than many small SUVs. While there are some scratchy, hard plastics on show, the main dashboard fascia lifts the cabin. If this silver trim doesn’t appeal, you’ll be able to choose a range of different options and even match the dashboard to the exterior paint colour.

Just like in the Volkswagen Polo, the build quality in the T-Cross is impressive. Even though this car will be one of VW’s least expensive models, it feels solid and well built, and the controls feel reassuringly chunky. There are stylish silver inserts on the steering wheel and a gloss black surround for the lower centre console, which adds to the feeling of quality. VW has also chosen to stick with a manual handbrake, instead of switching to an electric version.


The T-Cross does well for standard equipment, with an eight-inch full-colour infotainment system fitted across the range. The car offers a full suite of connectivity including Bluetooth, USB and Apple CarPlay (this is standard on all but the base model), plus DAB radio.

The kit list doesn’t stop there. Air-conditioning and a variety of safety systems are included on all models, while top versions come with VW’s crisp configurable digital instrument cluster (shown in these pictures). In this R-Line model, customers benefit from dual-zone air conditioning, sat nav and parking sensors at both ends. SEL and R-Line models get automatically adjusting LED headlights, plus LED tail-lights and daytime running lights.


There aren’t too many optional extras to choose from in the T-Cross brochure, perhaps because it’s rather well-equipped in the first place. However, you can choose from a variety of different alloy wheels (on the mid-spec trim levels) and paint colours to personalise the car to your tastes. Design packs are available across most of the range should you wish to add further splashes of colour and different interior upholstery.

VW T-Cross R-Line seats22
Once you’ve chosen these, you can pick options like a reversing camera, park assist and keyless entry. Electric folding door mirrors and high-beam assist can also be picked on VW’s smallest SUV, while packs include a Beats audio pack and a winter pack consisting of heated seats, heated windscreen washer nozzles and a washer fluid level indicator.

The options list is slightly different if you choose the entry-level ‘S’ model, however. Here, you can opt for front and rear parking sensors, front fog lights, tinted rear windows, sat nav, app connectivity and an extra security system.


As well as the entertainment technology listed above, the T-Cross gets a lot of safety features as standard. All models feature extended pedestrian and cyclist protection, front assist, auto emergency braking, tyre pressure monitoring and automatic emergency services contact in the event of a collision.

On SE models and above, you’ll also get blind-spot monitoring, lane-keep assist, a driver alert system, adaptive cruise control and hill start assist.

Volkswagen T-Cross SUV - Practicality & boot space

The T-Cross is more spacious and flexible than the VW Polo

You might look at the T-Cross and think that it’ll barely be big enough to accommodate the weekly shop, but its small-looking proportions disguise practical interior space. The boot, while not the biggest in class, is a pleasant surprise, as is the thoughtful touch of rear seats that slide forwards and backwards.

The extra headroom afforded by the taller body will be a big draw to many customers, as it makes the T-Cross that bit more practical than the Polo. There’s also a similar amount of headroom as you get in the Ford Puma and more than in the Renault Captur.

Volkswagen T-Cross interior space & storage

The T-Cross is quite a practical car generally, not just in the context of its compact size. It’s slightly longer than the Polo and 107mm taller, which makes it feel considerably more spacious inside than VW’s supermini hatch. Large windows allow the cabin to feel light and airy.

Cleverly, the rear seats can slide backwards or forwards, depending on how you want to divvy up cargo and passenger space. This trick is usually offered on much more expensive cars, or people carriers that prioritise substance over style. As a result, the T-Cross is very versatile, despite the distance between its wheels (the wheelbase) being identical to the Polo.

You’ll want to keep the rear seats pushed as far back as they’ll go if you regularly carry passengers, as legroom vanishes with the seats fully forward.

Boot space

Creating an SUV based on a Volkswagen Polo may divide opinion, but it certainly benefits boot space. The T-Cross offers between 385 and 455 litres with the rear seats up, depending on where you have them, but even the smaller number is five litres bigger than the boot in the Volkswagen Golf. With the rear seats pushed forwards as far as they’ll go, the boot is no longer flat - there’s a large channel where the seats were, which your possessions will fall into if they aren’t secured.

Flip those seats down and you’ll have 1,281 litres to fill - plus, you can fold the front passenger seat flat to accommodate longer items. In this configuration, the T-Cross offers almost as much space as a small van, which means it’s perfect if you occasionally need lots of luggage space but only have a small parking bay.

In terms of boot space, the T-Cross leaves many of its rivals behind. The Hyundai Kona offers up to 361 litres seats up and 1,143 litres seats down, the SEAT Arona offers 400 litres in five-seat mode, while the larger Renault Captur matches it almost exactly. In fact, with the seats pushed forward, the T-Cross offers slightly more space than the larger T-Roc.


It’s unlikely that many T-Cross owners will use their car for towing, and Volkswagen says that the 1.0-litre petrol models, and the 1.6-litre diesel models will safely tow a braked trailer weighing up to 1,100kg. The more powerful 1.5-litre petrol engine is the most capable model of the range, with the ability to tow a braked trailer up to 1,200kg in weight.

Volkswagen T-Cross SUV - Reliability & safety

Reliability untested but the T-Cross received a five-star Euro NCAP rating

Volkswagen has a good reputation in the UK, which is another reason why buyers flock to the brand. Its position as a premium mainstream manufacturer is appealing, and is backed up by reliable cars, a big dealership network and mostly satisfied customers. Even high-mileage cars hold their value much better than rivals in the classifieds. VW tends to post reasonable results in Driver Power surveys but this slipped somewhat in 2020. Nevertheless, the T-Cross could occupy one of the higher spots in the next couple of years.

The brand is also perceived as a builder of safe cars. All models come with a five-star Euro NCAP rating, and there is plenty of standard safety technology that would be optional extras on some other SUVs.

Volkswagen T-Cross reliability

It’s too early for any specific reliability feedback for the T-Cross but VW fell to 19th out of 30 manufacturers in our 2020 Driver Power survey (still ahead of BMW and Mercedes) while the Golf and Tiguan finished 50th and 51st out of the UK's top 75 models respectively.


Euro NCAP has given the T-Cross a full five-star score. It scored 97% for adult occupant safety, 86% for child safety, 81% in the pedestrians and other vulnerable road users category and 80% for on-board safety tech. The T-Cross features a range of passive and active safety systems to protect its occupants and pedestrians.

These include pedestrian and cyclist protection, automatic emergency braking, front assist and a speed limiter. More expensive trim levels add features like adaptive cruise control, hill start assist and blind-spot monitoring, which help the T-Cross achieve a maximum rating.


Published in Volkswagen
Saturday, 10 July 2021 05:52

Volkswagen Golf Estate review

Thoroughly rational, practical family car with an air of quality

 At a glance

New price £24,730 - £31,330
Lease from new From £270 p/mView lease deals
Used price £17,990 - £24,915
Used monthly cost From £449 per month
Fuel Economy 46.3 - 62.8 mpg
Road tax cost £155
Insurance group 14 - 22How much is it to insure?
8.0 - 10.7
Miles per pound (mpp)


  • Sensibly sized for British roads and towns
  • Premium feel and many clever details
  • Diverse range of engines and trims
  • Uncompromised practicality


  • Appreciably more expensive than rivals
  • Tech overkill, touch-controls are annoying
  • Some trim is not family-friendly
  • Can’t escape engineering shared with cheaper cars

Is the Volkswagen Golf Estate any good?

You won’t be surprised to learn that in eighth generation form, the Volkswagen Golf Estate is a thoroughly polished car and it’s somewhat better than good. However, it’s not a car that achieves greatness, because it is far from unique. The core engineering is shared across many cars from the wider group of brands owned by Volkswagen – from Audi to Skoda – and each one is micro-managed to the finest points to appeal to different audiences.

As both the progenitor of VW’s modern-family car approach, and the ‘widest appeal’ marque, the Golf thus ends up being something of a personality-free zone. There’s none of the zest of the Leon Estate, nor the superior arrogance of the A3 Sportback, or the reserved pragmatism of the Skoda Octavia, even though the best qualities of all three are wrapped up in one package.

So yes - it’s very good, and of high quality. But it’s just a touch anonymous.

In isolation, though, it’s rather impressive against the likes of the Mercedes-Benz CLA Shooting Brake, Ford Focus Estate and Hyundai i30 Tourer. A safe, advanced choice that won’t let you down or lose much money when it's time to trade in.

Whether it wins your heart, however, is another matter.

What’s it like inside?

Blurring the lines between VW Group’s brands, the Golf has taken some of the ‘high tech’ thunder from Audi and swapped to futuristic touch controls throughout. It’s not just the gadgetry, depending on trim level there are luxury touches that set the Golf ahead of many premium marques – albeit at the cost of family resilience.

Take, for example, the velvety-soft fabric lined door pockets on some models – they dampen rattles and feel much nicer than sharp edged unfinished plastic, but you wouldn’t want to clean it up after leaving some forgotten sweets in there on a hot day.

Everything is put together to a very high standard, with excellent fit and finish and no in-car rattles even with the large panoramic sunroof. Materials and appearance vary with specification, but all models get some version of two-screen cockpit; this is where the polish starts to wear off as the infotainment system can be laggy, the touch heater controls are hard to use by, well, touch, and after a while you just wish it had been designed with more focus on usability rather than looking good.

None of it is a showstopper though and you’ll adapt, it’s just there’s a lot of progress for the sake of it in a car that is supposed to be a familiar family friend.

Volkswagen Golf Estate (2021) review interior view 

Practicality and luggage space

With big windows, a long, flat roofline, and a large, flat-sided boot the Volkswagen Golf Estate is the perfect shape for carrying people and stuff; there’s little attempt to make it ‘sporty’ or fashionable, and that’s the way we like it. The tailgate extends low down with a wide, unimpeded opening and there’s an impressive amount of width available relative to the car’s size. Because the Golf Estate is still a relatively small car it’s got a short load area that is easily extended by folding the seats – and it has the useful feature of Isofix points on the front seat so you can fetch large items and take your infant with you.

Front seat comfort is the same as a normal Golf. In the rear seats the more upright roof and windows mean visibility is better, and Volkswagen’s thoughtful touches extend to not one, but three pockets on the seat backs on some models – with smartphone-sized slots further up the back of the front seat.

Fabric interiors retain that VW trick of making your back feel a bit hot after a while behind the wheel, but as many models come with air conditioning or climate control as standard, that isn’t as uncomfortable as it used to be. Ride depends on engine and spec – but every Golf is a strong performer here.

Volkswagen Golf Estate (2021) boot space

What’s it like to drive?

We tested the Volkswagen Golf 150 TDI Style, a mid-range model with torquey diesel engine and DSG automatic gearbox. VW’s diesel offers impressive refinement and more than adequate performance, as well as near 60mpg real-world economy.

Despite a wealth of driver assistants on offer, the Golf’s unobtrusive, driver-friendly setup means you can enjoy the car’s precise steering and neat handling. Yet it’s easy to let the tech take over in more tedious situations, which it does very effectively.

Nothing is outstanding on this spec, given the price – it’s just very, very good, intuitive, and predictable. As the Golf Estate is also available in very basic, luxurious, all-wheel drive and soon, high-performance R models as well, you should be able to find the experience you want; crucially they all have the same impressive, no-nonsense practicality that you want an estate for in the first place.

What models and trims are available?

As the best of Volkswagen Group, the Golf Estate offers, well, the best of VW’s engine selection. Everything from a 110hp 1.0-litre petrol to the storming Volkswagen Golf R will be available eventually – the latter offering all-wheel drive and 320hp when it arrives, depending on spec. This will be a truly fast load-lugger with only the smallest of external clues to tell other drivers what it is. Until the R arrives, the 200hp Alltrack provides grip and torque.

At present the hybrid Golf – the GTE – is not available in estate form, and for this generation there’s no e-Golf as the VW ID.3 fulfils that role, so there's unlikely to be a plug-in Golf Estate.

However, there is a slightly higher ground clearance, all-wheel drive Golf Alltrack, which is only available with 200hp diesel power and DSG automatic gearbox.

On other models, you can opt for a manual gearbox or VW’s proven DSG automatic, and there’s a comprehensive set of driver assistance available if desired. In short, the Volkswagen Golf may be a byword for the essentials of family motoring, but it can be lavishly equipped.

What else should I know?

One thing the Golf Estate has going against it is cost. No VW Golf is ‘cheap’, but even so you’ll find you pay a hefty premium for a normal spec of Golf against strong rivals such as the Ford Focus Estate, Kia Ceed and of course, the in-house rivals of the Skoda Octavia and SEAT Leon estates.

However, the Golf feels more like a premium product – in places it feels more upmarket and higher quality than more obvious posh brands such as Mercedes-Benz and even some Audis. A little bit of that is in soft, short-lived things like soft-trimmed door bins – but it implies a longer-lasting, more robust car overall.

On the other hand, if longevity is important to you other manufacturers are now offering warranties that make VW look decidedly stingy. With that in mind, read on to find out if we think the Volkswagen Golf Estate is worth buying.

Volkswagen Golf Estate (2021) review, driving

Should you buy a Volkswagen Golf Estate?

There is absolutely no denying that the eighth-generation Volkswagen Golf is technically the best Golf ever – and it isn’t always a given that a new one will be a better one, as the third generation demonstrated. However, the same engineering is available with different badges for less money, in the form of the Skoda Octavia Estate – which also has some physical controls instead being completely dependent on touch controls for many features, too.

If practicality is foremost in your buying decisions, that alone will rule the Golf out. However, the Golf does present a more pragmatic image and balance than, say, an Audi.

Soon, the appeal will be enhanced with the delightful combination of family-friendly, small-enough-for-towns subtle performance in the Golf R Estate which has few direct rivals, and little that can approach the performance for the money.

So ultimately, it’s down to whether you’re the sort of person who likes to pay for high quality, without necessarily shouting to the world that you bought the fanciest thing. If you are, the fit and finish will impress, the details reassure, and the relatively classless badge will appeal.

What we like

The wide range of engines and transmissions, the classless image and the sheer practicality of the Golf Estate make it a very easy car to like.

What we don't like

It's more expensive than a Skoda Octavia Estate and when you start optioning it up, it gets even more costly. The touch controls on the fascia are also unresponsive and are not as satisfying to use as traditional knobs and switches.

Which model is best for you?

There’s a diverse range, from the bare-bones 1.0 TSI Life to the 200hp all-wheel drive Alltrack, but we think the Golf Estate works best as a subtle, premium model – either of the 150hp diesel or petrol versions, in Style trim, will deliver an efficient, refined experience that justifies the expense.

The Golf Alltrack offers a different dilemma – when compared with premium rivals it represents good value for a capable car, ideally suited for rural areas prone to bad weather and patchy road clearance. It may struggle to look appealing next to a traditional 4x4 or SUV.

Overall though, the Skoda Octavia Estate offers better value than the Golf, particularly at the more affordable end of the range, and it would be our starting point here.

Volkswagen Golf Estate (2021) review, driving
Published in Volkswagen

German carmaker Volkswagen will suspend sales of cars powered by internal combustion engines in Europe by 2035 and focus entirely on electric cars, while this change will arrive later in the US and China, said one of the members of the Board of Directors of the VW Group.

"We are leaving the market for cars powered by internal combustion engines in Europe between 2033 and 2035, and later in the United States and China," said Klaus Zellmer, Member of the Board of Management of the Volkswagen Group in charge of sales.

"As far as South America and Africa are concerned, conventionally powered cars will stay there for a bit longer due to the fact that there are no legal frameworks that provide time limits for achieving zero emissions," he added.

In addition, Zellmer told the German newspaper Muenchner Merkur that by 2050 at the latest, the entire Volkswagen range should be completely CO2 neutral.

The idea is that in Europe, by 2030, electric cars will make up 70% of Volkswagen's total sales, which would allow them to avoid the severe penalties imposed by the European Union for all car manufacturers that exceed the CO2 allowance.

Published in Blog/News

According to the latest statements of the CEO of the Stellantis group, Carlos Tavares, it can be concluded that the competition has repeatedly wanted to take ownership of the Alfa Romeo brand, and the most serious was Volkswagen in 2018.

According to Autocar sources, contact was established between Volkswagen and the FCA Group during 2018 on the idea of ​​Ferdinand Piëch. The former director of Volkswagen often spoke positively about Alfa, for example during the Paris Motor Show in 2011 when he thought that this brand could flourish if it were owned by the VW Group, and even then said that Porsche could manage the Italian brand .

By 2018, Piëch no longer had the main say in Volkswagen’s day-to-day operations, but sources claim he was still determined to buy an Alfa Romeo. His interest jumped when investment company ADW Capital Management, a longtime owner of shares in the FCA, suggested that the Alfa Romeo brand could reach the level of Ferrari with a few changes.

Contact was established in June 2018, at the request of Ferdinand Piëch. Mike Manley, who then took over as CEO of the FCA Group, and Herber Diess, the head of Volkswagen, met to talk about potential collaboration. However, when Diess asked if Alfa Romeo was for sale he got a short and simple answer - no.

Published in Blog/News
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