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Volkswagen T-Cross Latest Updates

The latest from Wolfsburg is the Volkswagen T-Cross. We test it in sunny Spain and find a competent, well-designed compact SUV. This will be the MQB A0 platform SUV that has been talked about aplenty in VW and Skoda's big plan for India. Expect it to hit the market only next year.

T-Cross will be offered with a 1.0-litre three cylinder, a 1.5-litre four and a 1.6-litre diesel four. While the 150-horsepower 1.5 was not yet available for evaluation, we got time with the others. The relatively quiet-running 1.0-litre three-cylinder turbo can be specified with 93 bhp or 113 bhp. The 93 bhp version has a five-speed manual transmission, while with the113 bhp, a six-speed manual is standard. Pay more for a "dry" seven-speed dual-clutch transmission, which can be operated manually in a separate shift gate or with paddles on the new three-spoke steering wheel.

We found the 113 bhp engine to be noticeably more agile when mated to the crisp manual transmission than with the near-perfect but somewhat lifeless dual-clutch automatic transmission. With the manual, it is fun to chase the T-Cross over twisty roads, but when you force it, consumption can approach around 14 kmpl. The upcoming 1.5-litre four will be available only with the dual-clutch automatic. The 1.6-litre four-cylinder diesel with 93 bhp is fitted with a tall-geared five-speed manual transmission or the same dual-clutch automatic that can be mated to the two higher spec petrol engines. The diesel purrs confidently and pulls strongly throughout the rev range, right from the bottom. It was easily possible to stay at around 20 kmpl mileage, and when we drove it in an uncharacteristically defensive manner, we even got close to 25 kmpl! Which proves again that in terms of consumption and CO2 emissions, the diesel is virtually impossible to beat. There is no hybrid variant, and it would make little sense in this price-sensitive segment.

The balanced, pleasantly firm suspension is not exactly overstrained by the powertrain's performance. The steering provides precise feedback, the T-Cross is predictable and it remains neutral up to the limit. The stability control system intervenes rarely. This small crossover is also comfortable on long hauls - and it is unusually quiet. We even found out that you can go far off the road, thanks to the high ground clearance and balanced ESP tuning. Wheel sizes are between 16 and 18 inches. In India expect the 16 inchers as standard.

T-Cross with a suite of electronic safety systems that reaches far beyond the standard in the class. These systems include, for example, pedestrian detection, blind spot monitoring and a lane departure warning system. At an extra cost, there is adaptive cruise control and a parking assistant - which the T-Cross, with its boxy sheet metal, would actually not have needed. The excellent lighting also provides safety; you do have to pay more for the all-LED headlights, but the LED taillights are standard. Let's hope that all of these great features are offered in India as well - at least the adaptive cruise control and parking assistant.

The decor accentuates an interior that is unusually generous, given the exterior length of just 4110 mm. The 2550 mm wheelbase certainly helps, as does the 1580 mm height. The rear bench can be moved forward or backwards. You can slide the car's rear bench seat forward or back. It can be moved by 140 mm, noticeably increasing the second row legroom, or giving you a bit more cargo space in the boot - as the case may be. The boot volume is variable between 385 and 455 litres. Despite the elevated seating position, there is plenty of headroom. In fact, there is so much of it that VW could well have offered a sunroof or panoramic roof.

Dimensions 2019 Volkswagen T-Cross
Length 4,110 mm
Width 1,756 mm
Height 1,580 mm
Wheelbase 2,550 mm
Bootspace 385 litres/455 litres

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