One week with the VW T-Roc 1.4 TSI

I’ve just spent 7 days (or 500km, whichever came first) in the lesser-powered VW T-Roc. Reminiscent of the Audi Q2 but with a slightly friendlier price tag? Yes, I see it too.

You can get one powered by a 1.4l turbocharged petrol engine like this is, or the familiar 2.0l TSI, think GTI ‘lite’. After driving this boosted 2.0l on launch, it was interesting to have the more relevant 1.4l for a week. To recap, the T-Roc is yet another T-badged SUV in VW’s range, slotted above the T-Cross and below the Tiguan. It’s sportier, groovier, and built on the Golf MQB platform. It’s wider than the Golf and T-Cross so you get more living space. It’s yours in eight colours, or if you’re looking after something more bespoke, a two-tone paint scheme unlocks 20 different body/roof combinations.

Buy one immediately if you’re not put off by a sticker price between R490k and R590k. Taken out of context it might seem expensive but that’s the going rate for SUVs in this segment, and the T-Roc is a great fresh challenger. A more maverick offering compared to the more family-oriented Tiguan. If anything, you’ll be comparing it to the Golf, which is now a lesser car in most regards. That is unless you want a sumptuous cabin, it’s here alone that the T-Roc’s hard plastics can be considered a downgrade. Funny that, SUVs make sense. Better visibility, greater compliance and ground clearance, potentially safer for reasons that include larger crumple zones – SUVs make a ton of sense. Wait. What was my point? Despite the smaller engine, the 1.4l was sufficiently powerful for my urban commute and it looks as good in Design spec as the R-Line in my humble opinion. Is this the car all Golfs will be replaced by? Or are you waiting for an electric rival?

Quick Stats: VW T-Roc 1.4 TSI
Powertrain: 1.4l turbo, 110kW, 8-speed Tiptronic
Price: R489,000

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