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  • P11D Value (as tested): £21,430
  • BIK band 2018/19: 26%
  • Small SUV
  • 1.0-litre 3-cylinder petrol 115hp/200Nm
  • Performance: 10.2secs/120mph
  • Economy (On test) 44.4mpg
  • CO2: 112g/km

 

What is it?

 

An urban-friendly compact SUV, VW’s latest and smallest such vehicle combining compact dimensions with a classic profile.

It made its debut in October last year and with a length of 4,108mm, height of 1,558mm, it is larger than a Polo but smaller than the T-Roc.

Despite its compact dimensions the T-Cross quite happily accommodates five adults.

volkswagen t cross october 2018 28Why would you want a VW T-Cross

  • Lively and economical 3-cylinder engine
  • Flexible and useable load space
  • High seating
  • Premium connectivity and safety equipment
  • Plenty of USB ports
  • Bluetooth telephone and audio connection with simultaneous pairing of two compatible devices.

 

What might put you off a VW T-Cross

 

  • Sports seats on some models lack adjustment which does not make for the most comfortable of seating positions.
  • Thick rear pillars make for a restricted over-the-shoulder view
  • Interior does not quite have the upmarket feel of the Polo
  • No diesel option
  • Price

rear t cross first editionOur verdict on the VW T-Cross

 

Quite simply, one of the best small SUVs around, if not one of the cheapest

There’s been many a 3-cylinder we’ve tried recently – Volvo V40, Fiat 500X, Jeep Renegade etc, but the VW engine knocks all of them into a tin hat for performance and economy.

What is most impressive is the amount of space available in such a small package.

Load space is variable and class leading thanks to significant extra flexibility afforded by the sliding rear seats. Measuring between 385 and 455 litres with the rear seats up.

With the rear seats folded flat, the space opens up to an impressive 1,281-litres.

We also liked the high seating position for such a small car and also appreciated the premium connectivity and safety technology.

Based on VW’s flexible MQB platform means the T-Cross benefits from a large number of driver assistance systems as standard.

These include front assist with pedestrian monitoring and city emergency braking, lane keep assist, hill start assist, blind spot detection and rear traffic alert.

Adaptive cruise control and and e-call emergency alert are also available.

There are four USB ports, two front and two tear and optional wireless smartphone charging. Also optional is keyless slocking and starting system

Optional equipment on our test vehicle were 18-inch alloys with 225/45 R18s complete with locking bolts at £540, and active info display, a 10.25 inch high resolution dash display screen with customisable menus (£375)

Silver metallic paint and titan black interior cloth added a further £575 taking the total cost of our test vehicle to £23,145.

There was also Bluetooth telephone and audio connection with simultaneous pairing of two compatible devices

The three cylinder engine has plenty in store both on motorways and country roads pulling nicely across most of the rev range.

Very good ride comfort as well for a vehicle in this class, soaking up the pot holes as easily as it does the motorway miles.

It rides the contours as well, even at speed the T-Cross rarely feels bouncy or fidgety.

There’s a wide range of adjustment to the seat and steering wheel, including standard height and lumbar adjustment on all trims, so best to steer clear of the sport seat options.

All trims get a handy Europe wide eCall emergency SOS assistance, although voice activation is reserved for the options list while most competitors offer this as standard.

Standard sound system comes with six speakers but can be can upgraded with the Beats Soundpack. This adds a subwoofer and boost power to 300 watts.

As for the space, even the 6-footers, there’s no shortage of head and leg room in the front while it does not feel particularly cramped in the rear seats.

This is thanks to an unobtrusive central floor tunnel which allows the middle passenger to slide into their seat without too much obstruction.

There’s a sliding drawer under the driver’s seat, a large glovebox and door bins, height-adjustable armrest plus an assortment of trays, cup holders and cubby holes.

Every model features flexible sliding rear seats allowing you to prioritise boot space or rear leg room depending on requirement.

The boot floor is height-adjustable from SE trim upwards. This creates a separate space beneath the main boot compartment.

When raised, it levels out the step in the floor that’s formed when the rear seats are folded.

There are cheaper, small SUVs around and the T-Cross does work out a little pricier than others on a PCP.

However it’s CO2 emissions are amongst the lowest in the class as is the fuel consumption.

 

What else?

  • There are two versions of the 3-litre engine, both turbocharged and offering 95hp or 115hp.
  • Five or six-speed manual transmissions are available depending on power output while a seven speed auto box is available on the 115hp engine.
  • S Trim models get electrically adjustable and heated door mirrors as standard in addition to a 3-inch touch screen. Composition media infotainment system, rear led tail lights and automatic headlights.
  • UK line-up is VW’s familiar S, SE, SEL and R-Line. With the SE the most popular trim level.
  • Business and retail sales are split 50-50
  • Although there’s no diesel version VW has said one might come later.