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Volkswagen Scirocco review by Top Gear

You know how we love the Golf GTI. Now imagine a car that drives a little better, looks far better, and hardly costs more

  • Comfort

    A firm chassis of course, but the adaptive dampers and low-slung seats mean the Scirocco’s ride doesn’t feel too turbulent. The seats are terrific, but there’s a headroom shortage in the back. There’s also a fair bit of wind and road noise at speed, especially with the optional glass roof.

    Rated 7 out of 10
  • Performance

    There's a 1.4-litre TSI, two two-litre turbo four-pots with either 197bhp (as seen in the Golf GTI) or 260bhp in the R, plus a 2.0-litre TDI. While the 197bhp 2.0T engine might be broadly the same as the GTI's, the torque arrives earlier, making it seem quicker (though it hits 62mph in 7.2s, the same as the Golf). It's a bit inert when you really start to go mental, but you still come away with the sense that if you had to have a car that spans a multitude of situations, the Scirocco would be it. Since the 1.4TSI comes with Volkswagen's 'Twincharger' system (meaning it boasts both a supercharger and turbocharger), it's lively and responsive despite it's diminutive size. The 2.0TDI is fast-revving and punchy and sounds pretty rorty too. Not as clean and sweet as the petrol, but not rattly and never strained either. The 260bhp 2.0 in the R feels punchier than the 197bhp You can feel the extra oomph, and yes, it is empirically really very quick indeed (0-62mph in 6s and 155mph) but most of the time, the noise and the power delivery is lacking that little extra something. And that something is joy.

    Rated 7 out of 10
  • Cool

    Remember the impact the Audi TT had first time around? The Scirocco has that, but without trying too hard.

    Rated 8 out of 10
  • Quality

    If you’ve been in other modern VWs you’ll spot the parts sharing, but so what? That means you know the stuff works well and feel good to the touch. Only the interior door trim is a bit cheapo. As you drive, the bodyshell feels like it’s one solid ingot. It looks like that sort of quality from the outside too.

    Rated 8 out of 10
  • Handling

    All Scirocco's get VW's excellent ACC (adaptive chassis control) which lets you choose from three settings: 'comfort' for motorways, 'sport' for speed, and 'normal' for everything else. The ACC adjusts three things: the throttle map for better response, the steering for better feel and the damping for better control of Scirocco's mass. And it works. The VW driving vibe remains, but the car is a Golf GTI expanded to be 25 per cent better. It turns in precisely, suffers from less roll and lets you exploit the power.

    Rated 7 out of 10
  • Practicality

    It's a strict four-seater, although thanks to using the Golf's platform, room in the back is generous for a coupe. Rear head room, though, will be an issue for most adults and the rear headrests block the already small rear screen. Plus, if you sit in the back, there's virtually no vision and the blindspots will hide suburbs. At 292 litres, the boot isn't bad for a weekend toy, beating the likes of the Nissan 370Z for size.

    Rated 6 out of 10
  • Running costs

    Something this in-demand won’t depreciate, surely. And group 16 insurance even for the 200bhp model ain’t too bad if you say it quickly. CO2 is 179, less for the diesel and 1.4 of course. On variable servicing, you might be ableto get up to 18,000 miles interval. But not driving it the way we would.

Article source: www.topgear.com

Win tickets to see Paul Weller in session at Abbey Road Studios in association with the Volkswagen Beetle

The only way to win access to what promises to be a truly unforgettable show is by entering a competition being hosted by the digital music service Spotify.  To be in with a chance of winning one of 50 pairs of tickets, simply visit Volkswagen’s Facebook page; from here you will be invited to browse Spotify’s catalogue of over 18 million songs, and choose your ultimate track to add to the ‘VW Beetle Iconic Tracks’ playlist.  The competition is open until Friday 26 October, and Spotify will contact all of the winners during the week commencing 29 October. 

The design of the brand new Beetle was inspired by the original Volkswagen, a car that was immortalised on the cover of The Beatles’ landmark album ‘Abbey Road’. The new model reinvents that timeless design to create a truly modern classic - an icon reborn for the 21st Century.

Paul Weller’s career and influence spans multiple generations and genres. He is known for radical reinvention, whilst still maintaining a cohesive link to his love for all things mod, soul and rock ‘n’ roll. To this day he creates fresh and inventive music, with his latest album ‘Sonik Kicks’ hitting no.1 in the UK album charts.

Abbey Road very rarely opens its doors to members of the public, so this competition offers a once-in-a-lifetime chance to visit Studio One, and see a master of his craft perform in a truly inspiring setting. The largest of Abbey Road’s spaces, the studio has hosted recording sessions from the likes of Pink Floyd, Elbow and Kanye West, plus film scores including Star Wars, Batman, Raiders of the Lost Ark, The English Patient and 2001 A Space Odyssey. Most famously, The Beatles performed ‘All You Need is Love’ in Studio One, which was broadcast live to the nation in 1967.

Paul Weller said: ‘It’s always exciting for me to perform at Abbey Road, in a space where so many icons have gone before me.’

Kirsten Stagg, National Communications Manager at Volkswagen said: ‘We are hugely excited about the launch of the 21st century Beetle, and we are thrilled to be able to offer the chance for members of the public to see a legendary performer in such an iconic venue.’

The competition will be promoted by a national advertising campaign on Spotify, encouraging Spotify’s audience of music lovers to take part.  The URL for entering is: www.facebook.com/volkswagenuk. For more information on the new Volkswagen Beetle please visit http://www.volkswagen.co.uk/new/beetle-nf/home

Article source: www.volkswagen.co.uk

Volkswagen’s all-new Golf is making its motor show debut this week in Paris, with the seventh-generation of the evergreen model displaying a new look plus new technology, engines, safety and infotainment features. But no Golf line-up would be complete without the iconic GTI.  That’s why Volkswagen has also revealed a concept of the GTI Golf on the stand alongside the standard hatchback.


The new Golf GTI, which is set to go on sale in mainland Europe in early 2013 and the UK in summer 2013, is powered by an advanced engine from the existing EA888 series: a 2.0-litre turbocharged direct-injection petrol engine with 220 PS (10 PS more than the current Golf GTI).  For the first time in the car’s history, the GTI will also be available, direct from the factory, with a ‘performance pack’ which will boost the car’s maximum power to 230 PS.  


In the entry-level car with 220 PS, maximum torque has been increased by 70 Nm to 350 Nm – the same as the previous Golf R – which gives impressive flexibility and in-gear acceleration.  The new Golf GTI concept with 220 PS has a zero to 62 mph time of 6.6* seconds and a top speed of 153 mph; add the performance pack and maximum power rises to 230 PS, top speed to 155 mph, and the sprint time falls to 6.5 seconds.


Adding the 10 PS pack not only enhances performance but also handling, with front brake disc diameters increased, plus a front axle differential lock which reduces power-related understeer.


But the GTI’s power does not come at the cost of fuel economy or emissions.  Both GTI versions will be equipped with a standard Stop/Start system, and fulfil the EU-6 emissions standard that takes effect in 2014. With a six-speed manual gearbox, the GTI is set to return 47.1* mpg (an 18 per cent improvement over the Mk VI), with carbon dioxide emissions of 140 g/km.  A six-speed DSG gearbox is available as an option for both power levels.


Both GTI models also benefit as standard from a variable ratio steering system which, in essence, allows the driver toturn the car through a desired radius with smaller movements of the steering wheel.  While conventional steering systems work with a fixed ratio, the new Golf GTI operates with a variable steering ratio which reduces steering input perceptibly when manoeuvring and parking. On twisting country roads, the driver experiences a benefit in dynamics due to the more direct layout.


Naturally, the new Golf GTI also benefits from all the technological advances of the standard seventh-generation Golf, such as reduced weight, new safety systems including multi-collision brake and innovative infotainment systems. 


The new Golf GTI concept is distinguished by numerous external and internal styling features, including red brake callipers, honeycomb grille with double red stripe detail, smoked LED rear lights and LED licence plate illumination and chrome 80 mm diameter tailpipes.  Inside, tartan sports seats, a flat bottomed steering wheel, GTI golf ball gear knob and GTI-specific red ambience lighting hark back to cars of previous generations while remaining completely up to date and refreshed for the new generation.

article source: Volkswagen.co.uk

Beetle Cabriolet prepares to make world debut at La Auto Show

Its unmistakable silhouette has given an iconic status to the different generations of the Beetle.  The fact that over 330,000 units of the original Beetle Cabriolet cars were produced from 1949 to 1980 speaks for itself.  In creating the latest version of the Beetle Cabriolet, Volkswagen has reinterpreted the timeless design of bygone days and given the silhouette a sportier and more dynamic look.  The combination of a flatter roofline and the more upright windshield gives the car a silhouette that resembles that of the legendary original Beetle Cabriolet.

The new model also incorporates design cues from the modern Volkswagen line-up: the air inlet under the bumper, the flat contour of the hood’s bottom edge and in particular the tail lights show the car’s close family ties.  In the new Beetle Cabriolet, Volkswagen brings together modern technology and the highest standards of quality with the emotional legacy of the car’s ‘forefather’.  As on the nostalgic icon, the headlights retain their classic shape.

Another feature contributing to the special charm of the new Beetle Cabriolet is the traditional soft top.  When open it lies very flat, enabling good vision to the rear.  Despite its compact construction, the top is very wide and elongated in shape.  It opens and closes entirely automatically (on all models) within around 10 seconds, including on the move.

Standard on the Beetle Cabriolet is a soft-top cover, which, if desired, tucks the opened top neatly away.  Surrounding chrome trim accentuates the borders between steel and fabric.  As in other Beetle models, the compact instrument panel with an extra large round instrument cluster and several nostalgic elements, such as the additional glovebox, create a markedly different design inside the new Beetle Cabriolet as well.

With its spacious and comfortably designed interior the Beetle Cabriolet is a real four-seat vehicle.  The 225 litre boot includes a fold-down symmetrically split rear bench seat which allows bigger items to be transported even when the roof is closed.

To provide added safety in the event of a rollover accident, Volkswagen has developed an active rollover protection system.  It consists of two extendable modules fitted inside the vehicle in concealed fashion behind the back of the rear bench seat.  If the car were to roll over, the two rollover modules would be activated via the central airbag triggering unit.  Along with the fixed A-pillars, they provide effective protection for the occupants of all four seats within a matter of milliseconds.  Another extra safety feature is the standard front and head-thorax airbag system.

The new Beetle Cabriolet will be available with seven engines.  The entry-level engine is a highly efficient 1.2-litre TSI with 105 PS.  Straight after launch, the BlueMotion Technology version of this petrol engine will also be available.  The other petrol options are the lively 1.4-litre TSI and the 2.0-litre version, producing 160 and 200 PS respectively.  Diesel engines comprise a 1.6-litre TDI with 105 PS (also available as a BlueMotion Technology version) and a 2.0-litre TDI with 140 PS.

The Beetle Cabriolet will make its world debut at the Los Angeles Motor Show on 28 November and is due to go on sale in the UK in spring 2013.  Prices and specification details will be announced closer to launch.

Article source: www.volkswagen.co.uk

All-new seventh generation Volkswagen Golf breaks cover in Berlin

The all-new Volkswagen Golf has been unveiled in Berlin, 36 years after the original model redefined the small family car.  The seventh generation Golf builds on the success of its predecessors, of which over 29 million have been sold, bringing new levels of comfort, practicality, safety and efficiency to the class. 

Despite offering more room for passengers and more advanced technological features than ever before, new production techniques contribute to the Mk VII Golf being up to 100 kg lighter than the car it replaces, helping to make it up to 23 per cent more efficient than before.  On top of this, the new Golf is also safer than ever, thanks not just to a stronger body structure (which is also 23 kg lighter) but also to a raft of standard and optional passive and active safety systems.

The new Golf is built on the so-called MQB (Modularer Querbaukasten) platform or Modular Transverse Matrix.  This standardises many vehicle component parameters across brands and vehicle classes, and allows access to new powertrains and technologies, including innovations in the areas of safety and infotainment, which until now were reserved for vehicles in higher segments. 

At 4,255 mm long, the new Golf is 56 mm longer than its predecessor, with a 59 mm longer wheelbase of 2,637 mm.  The front wheels are 43 mm further forward, helping to generate more interior space, while the Golf is also 13 mm wider, at 1,799 mm, and 28 mm lower, at 1,452 mm.  This helps to create a 10 per cent improvement in the drag co-efficient, which is now 0.27 Cd. 

Though the new car’s dimensions are larger, its overall design is unmistakeably that of a Golf, thanks to a design DNA that has evolved through the decades.  Walter de Silva, Head of Design for Volkswagen AG, said: ‘One of the keys to the Golf’s success lies in its continuity.  There are a handful of cars with a design that, like the Golf’s, has been refined, tweaked and enhanced down the decades and thus become timeless.’

Inside the Golf there is more room than ever.  Rear legroom is improved by 15 mm, and the front seats have been moved 20 mm further back, benefitting taller drivers.  Front shoulder room is improved by 31 mm to 1,420 mm (at the rear it is 30 mm wider) and elbow room by 22 mm to 1,469 mm (20 mm wider at the rear).  There is more room for luggage, too: the boot is 30 litres larger, at 380 litres, with a low 685 mm sill to make loading effortless.  The front passenger seat can also optionally fold fully forward, creating a loadspace which is up to 2,412 mm long.

In the cockpit, the centre console is now angled more towards the driver, giving them easier, more ergonomic and direct access to auxiliary controls, including the new generation of touchscreen infotainment systems that is available on the Golf.  All Golf models now have touchscreen systems as standard, starting in the UK with a 5.8-inch colour display system, and rising to the range-topping satellite navigation system with eight-inch colour display.  It operates with finger gestures that will be familiar to smartphone users.  Features include DAB digital radio, auxiliary inputs (including USB), Bluetooth telephone preparation and access to vehicle trip information.

Between the front seats, space is increased by virtue of the new electronic parking brake with auto-hold feature.  And for the first time in a Volkswagen, the compartment under the centre armrest optionally includes a universal phone holder with inductive aerial, which not only increases the signal strength of a phone placed in it, but also reduces the drain on the phone’s battery.

The new Golf also features a number of innovative standard safety systems, while optional systems include many previously only available on vehicles in a class above.  Standard on all new Golf models is a multi-collision brake system.  This automatically brakes the vehicle after a collision, to reduce kinetic energy significantly and thus minimise the chance of a second impact.  Research in Germany shows that around a quarter of accidents involving personal injury are multi-collision events. Also the PreCrash system that made its debut on the Touareg is standard from the SE upwards.  If it detects the possibility of an accident, it pre-tensions seatbelts and closes the windows and sunroof, leaving just a small gap, to ensure the best possible protection from the airbags.

Other electronic aids include Adaptive Cruise Control (standard in the UK from SE models upwards), which uses radar sensors to maintain a set distance from the vehicle in front; Front Assist, which can bring the vehicle to a complete stop and operates at speeds of up to 150 km/h (approx. 93 mph); and City Emergency Braking, which operates at up to 30 km/h (approx. 19 mph), and can reduce or prevent the chance of accidents occurring.  A Driver Alert System, as introduced on the Passat, monitors the driver’s inputs, to detect any signs of tiredness; while a camera-operated Lane Assist system can help keep the car in a specific lane, providing countersteering assistance where necessary.  A Dynamic Light Assist system optionally masks the vehicle’s high beam lighting, making for brilliant illumination without dazzling on-coming traffic.  

The Golf’s steering now uses a variable ratio system that offers more agile steering in dynamic driving situations, while ensuring high-speed stability, and easy manoeuvring in the city.  Specify the latest generation Park Assist, and the new Golf will even park itself in a space no more than 80 cm longer than the vehicle.

For the first time, the Golf is also available with driver profile selection, which allows the driver to choose from four modes – Eco, Sport, Normal and Individual; with a DSG gearbox a fifth option – Comfort – is also offered.  Each of these modes alters the throttle mapping and engine management (among other parameters) to the chosen style, so in Eco mode, for example, the engine management, air conditioning and ancillary systems are controlled to achieve maximum fuel consumption. 

Powering the Golf is a new range of petrol and diesel engines, all of which incorporate Stop/Start and battery regeneration systems.  At launch, the petrol engines are a 1.2-litre TSI 85 PS unit returning 4.9 l/100 km (around 57.6 mpg and 113 g/km), and a 1.4-litre TSI 140 PS unit with Active Cylinder Technology, which can deactivate two of the cylinders, and achieves up to 4.8 l/100 km (58.9 mpg and 112 g/km).  The launch diesel engines are a 1.6-litre unit with 105 PS, which returns 3.8 l/100 km (74.3 mpg and 99 g/km), and a 2.0-litre 150 PS unit which returns 4.1 l/100 km (68.9 mpg and 106 g/km). 

Further details on the new Golf will be revealed at the Paris Motor Show.  The car will go on sale from October, with the first UK deliveries expected in January 2013.

Article source: www.volkswagen.co.uk