- Polo-based T-Cross due in April
- Comes with keen pricing
- Four-cylinder version due later in 2020
Volkswagen will, at long last, join the compact crossover party this April, introducing its smallest SUV, the T-Cross, to Australian audiences.
The company has been on the sidelines for a few years now, watching the likes of the Mitsubishi ASX, the Mazda CX-3 and the Toyota C-HR joined by entrants from Kia (Seltos) and Hyundai (Kona) while it waited.
Its opening gambit, however, is a strong one, with the entry-level 85TSI Life kicking things off at $27,990 plus on-road costs, offering a strong mix of modern tech and sensible spec.
Powered by an 85kW/200Nm three-cylinder turbocharged engine backed by a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox, the T-Cross 85TSI Life comes standard with 16-inch alloys, inductive phone charging, four USB charging points, an 8.0-inch multimedia system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, AEB with pedestrian and cyclist detection, parking sensors with manoeuvre braking (helps to avoid obstacles under 10km/h), lane-keep assist, automatic headlights and wipers and more.
Step into the $30,990 (plus ORC) 85TSI Style, and the T-Cross gains 17-inch rims, LED headlights with automatic high beam assist, adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitor, dual-zone air, keyless entry and parking assist.
A more powerful Style variant is also en route, with its price yet to be confirmed. It will offer 110kW and 250Nm from a 1.5-litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine, and score 18-inch alloys, tinted rear glass and unique cloth trim.
VW has also bundled together option packs across the grades. Adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert and parking assist can be added to the Life for $1200, while a Sound and Vision package comprising a digital dash, satellite navigation and a 300w audio system can be added across the two grades for $1900.
R-Line packages can be also added to both Style variants, but these kits are restricted to items like R-Line badging, 18-inch rims, scuff plates and pedal pads in alloy, bespoke cloth upholstery and a sports steering wheel, rather than bodykit add-ons.
Paint prices range from zero for white and ‘petrol’ blue, $600 for metallic orange, grey, silver or blue, and $800 for metallic turquoise.
“The T-Cross takes Volkswagen into new territory,” says the brand’s director of customer experience and Marketing and Jason Bradshaw.
“Previously Japanese and Korean brands have had this segment to themselves. To say that none can touch the T-Cross for technology is no empty boast.”
The second row of seats in the T-Cross can slide 140mm fore and aft, with 385L of luggage space available behind the seats with the seats in the most rearward position, according to Volkswagen.
While this figures already tops the cargo space of key rivals like the Subaru XV, space grows to 485 litres with the seats slid forward, giving it arguably more cargo space than all of its potential rivals, including the voluminous Honda HR-V (411 litres), Mitsubishi ASX (393 litres) and Hyundai Kona (361 litres).
The T-Cross will be built in Spain alongside the newest Polo.
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