JOHANNESBURG – Volkswagen set an inside benchmark with its fourth-generation Golf greater than 20 years in the past that had rivals, typically unsuccessfully, scrambling to catch up. While this wasn’t the most dynamic automobile round, the Golf 4 had a really elegant cockpit that simply seemed and felt prefer it belonged in a bigger and extra luxurious automobile.
These elegant vibes have adopted by way of in most of the merchandise that the German automobile producer has launched since, and as such each time we bounce into a contemporary VW, we anticipate to be impressed by the cabin furnishings.
Premium vibes missing inside
But after we stepped into the company’s newest SUV providing, the T-Roc, one thing felt amiss. While there was no faulting the general build high quality or the design and format, the higher and decrease dashboard plastics had been of the onerous and scratchy selection that not solely seemed low-cost, but felt that manner too. We’re keen to forgive the T-Cross for its comparable transgressions, but it’s a lot tougher to justify in a extra premium product like the T-Roc.
However there is not less than a sort of high-tech atmosphere, because of the digital instrument cluster and the decently sized infotainment display, with our check automobile being optionally upgraded to the 20.3cm Discover Pro with App Connect, which boasts crisp graphics and good all-round usability.
Thankfully the cabin additionally avoids being altogether bland, relying on which mannequin and spec mixture you select. In the base Design by-product, for example, you possibly can select blue or orange trim for the dashboard if the corresponding exterior color is chosen. The R-Line we had on check, although, solely gives Caribou Grey sprint trimmings, though you possibly can go for a white and gray seat upholstery mixture that does raise the atmosphere a bit.
On the exterior: it’s received the look
While the cabin was a letdown, we had been impressed with the T-Roc’s exterior, which seems each elegant and purposeful. This is largely because of a coupe-inspired C-pillar in addition to accessible two-tone color choices and large wheels throughout the board, with Design derivatives rolling on 18-inch alloys as normal and the R-Line upgrading to 19” rims.
Incidentally, the T-Roc is carefully associated to Audi’s Q2, though you’d by no means say in order each have distinctive exterior panels.
Let’s take a spin
The attention-grabbing factor about the T-Roc is that though it is barely cheaper than it’s Q2 cousin, commanding between R489 400 and R593 600 versus the Audi’s R504 000 – R602 800 value vary, the VW truly sweetens the cope with greater engines.
Whereas base Q2 fashions make do with the 85kW 1-litre turbo triple, the T-Roc Design entry mannequin comes with the 110kW 1.4 TSI turbopetrol, which is the flagship engine in the Audi! The T-Roc’s R-Line range-topper, in the meantime, upgrades you to a model of the acquainted 2-litre TSI unit, producing 140kW and 320Nm. The front-driven 1.4 TSI is paired with an eight-speed torque converter autobox, whereas the 2.0 TSI comes normal with 4Motion all-wheel drive and a seven-speed DSG dual-clutch tranny full with ‘flappy paddles’ on the steering wheel.
Given that it’s a detuned GTI engine saddled with the further weight of an AWD system, the T-Roc R-Line doesn’t precisely really feel like a sizzling hatch on stilts, and but it felt impressively crisp and responsive and efficiency was actually easy. VW says it should surge from 0-100km/h in simply 7.2 seconds and that is actually spectacular for an SUV that doesn’t parade round with a efficiency badge.
Around corners the T-Roc feels fleet footed for an SUV and the 4Motion AWD system will maintain issues tidy as you method the limits. The journey is agency but not uncomfortable, and we suspect it will really feel so much cushier with wheels smaller than the 19” items fitted to our automobile.
What options come as normal?
The 2.0 TSI R-Line 4Motion is fitted with dual-zone automated local weather management, auto headlights, Active Info Display (digital instrument cluster), automated tailgate, Radio Composition Media infotainment system, high-beam management, leather-wrapped multifunction steering wheel and park-distance management.
However, superior driver help options comparable to Adaptive Cruise Control with Front Assist, Blind Spot Monitor and Rear Traffic Alert are non-obligatory.
Although the cabin seems cheaper than you’d anticipate at the value level, the Volkswagen T-Roc does achieve again loads of floor with its different attributes, together with funky exterior styling, trendy cabin tech and good all-round efficiency and dynamic capability. It additionally gives higher worth than its Audi Q2 cousin.