VW will initially launch the T-Roc in 3 derivatives: The entry level 1.4 TSI 110kW Design, the 2.0 TSI 140kW 4MOTION® DSG Design and the 2.0 TSI 140kW 4MOTION® DSG R-Line.
The entry level and the flagship derivatives will arrive before the year is up and the middle-order 2.0 TSI Design is set to arrive in early January 2021.
The entry-level T-Roc 1.4 TSI 110kW Design is said to sip fuel at 6.9l/100km. The 0 – 100km/h dash takes 8.4 seconds, and a top speed of 205km. The 2.0 TSI engine blips the 100km/h mark in 7.2 seconds and on to a top speed of 216km/h. Fuel consumption on this car is a claimed 8.3l/100km.
Let’s Start with Names
First off, the T-Roc name continues the brand’s new naming convention for its SUVs. Initially the plan was to continue naming VW SUV’s starting with T, think Tiguan, Touran (not offered here any longer) and Touareg. This was all well and good until internal project names for the T-Cross and T-Roc seemed to roll of the tongue quite well and so it was decided to go public with these names on the new models. Happy days.
But you may be wondering about the trim names which have also been changed – Yes, Volkswagen has a new Y-structure naming plan for their trim lines. These are “Design” and “R-Line” trims. As the name suggests, the Design line offers something with more styling and aesthetics where the R-Line offer something more sporty. Ok that’s settled then.
Much is new with the T-Roc, including it being the first car launched here with the new VW badge after the brand update that was introduced last year. The T-Roc design is certainly unique in the VW family, an overall impression that is compact yet stylish. There’s coupé-inspired lines, bulging wheel arches, chrome strips that outline the top and bottom of the bodywork and of course, the stand out signature headlights. The design is uncluttered and clean, quite possibly the most appealing of all VW SUV products.
Key exterior differentiators include optional 18-inch alloy wheels on the Design trim or 19-inch alloys wheel that come with the R-Line. The T-Roc gives customers a choice of contrasting colours for the body colour against the roof and side mirrors. This allows for 26 colour combinations across the range for the Design trim and 21 on the R-Line.
The Volkswagen T-Roc offers various degrees of digital connectivity and interaction. Base spec for phone connectivity is the App-Connect feature that allows smartphone connections via the USB ports and in turn, allows for smartphone-like use on the infotainment touchscreen.
An upgrade to this is the Discover Media infotainment option which allows for a wireless App-Connect as well as wireless charging if your phone is suited to this level of charging. If not, of course there are two USB ports available for this.
The T-Roc also features VW’s latest vehicle-to-smartphone data interface. We-Connect Go is an application that allows you access to your car’s information via your phone.
I.Q Drive – Safety Features
I.Q Drive ups the ante in terms of passive safety features and comfort technology. I.Q Drive is a suite of technology features. Passive features include standard items such as stability control, blind spot monitoring, park distance control, fatigue detection, auto lighting and dimming mirrors.
On top of this, I.Q Drive adds a number of driver assistance systems. These are things like Emergency Assist, Front Assist or Lane Assist – each of which can take active measures to avoid an accident or reduce accident damage such as applying the brakes when the driver doesn’t do so or steering the car back into its lane. Other I.Q Drive technologies include Traffic Jam Assist for adaptive driving in traffic and Adaptive Cruise Control.
In this segment, these technologies are becoming a necessary differentiator and indeed make for added safety credentials.
Is it Practical?
Volkswagen’s T-Roc is built on the same MQB platform as the Golf. In size, it is 80mm longer than the baby VW T-Cross and 162mm shorter than a VW Tiguan. Whilst it still finds itself in the compact segment, it’s got more luggage space than a VW Golf or even some sedan competitors. Claimed boot capacity is 455-litres and with 60:40 split seats, that can be enlarged to 1,290-litres.
Not too long ago, Volkswagen’s line-up consisted of two SUV’s in total interspersed with such historically dominant sedan nameplates as the Jetta and Passat and the more recent CC and Arteon. That has all changed and it’s a glimpse into the world demand for anything with a slightly raised ride height and any semblance of “utility”.
The only sedan available for sale by Volkswagen SA in 2020 is the Polo Sedan. The T-Roc is Volkswagen’s fourth SUV and like the T-Cross it will garner praise in the region and this will translate into strong sales figures.
Some overseas publications have observed that the T-Roc can be quite expensive, and I assume this is because of the options available on each of the trim lines. VW South Africa has not confirmed pricing and will only do this in August 2020. They did give an indication of the region of between R500,000 and R600,000 for all derivatives but we’ll have to wait and see if they can indeed keep it within that. With fluctuating exchange rates, it’s a difficult task for any manufacturer.
The order books are open should you be one of the many interested.
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