A newly minted Volkswagen T-Roc has been spotted in Germany, sporting a few tell-tale clues that suggest it’s a high-performance R version.
While it has no R-badging, the camouflage-free car reportedly emitted a similar engine note to the Golf R’s turbocharged 2.0-litre petrol engine through a quad-tipped exhaust system that mimics the pipes of VW’s fastest hot hatch.
It also featured 20-inch alloys, as fitted to the Tiguan R-Line trim, and differently shaped LED daytime running lights to those fitted on the T-Roc models revealed at the Frankfurt Motor Show last week.
The bodywork doesn’t seem too different to the regular models, though any changes on the production version will probably be subtle as they are with Golf R.
Speculation the pictured car is an R model is also supported by the fact that VW head of research and development Frank Welsche was last week reported as saying the company has already developed a prototype T-Roc R for testing.
Volkswagen had previously revealed it was considering a T-Roc R on a couple of occasions. In May company boss Herbert Deiss told UK motoring site Auto Express that the R sub-brand would be a good fit for high-performance SUVs of which there was “definitely customer demand”.
Also making a T-Roc R highly plausible is the fact it’s built on the same MQB modular platform as the Golf, allowing it to share the Golf R’s all-wheel drive undercarriage as well as its 213kW/370Nm 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo petrol engine.
Volkswagen has so far confirmed three T-Roc variants; an eponymous base model and upper-spec
‘Style’ and ‘Sport’ variants which will be similarly equipped, but presented differently.
They are expected to arrive in Australia sometime next year, with Volkswagen Australia working hard to secure allocation in the wake of unexpectedly strong global demand.
While it’s too early for Volkswagen Australia to confirm if a T-Roc R will head Down Under with the rest of the range, a spokesman told WhichCar it’s an attractive prospect with strong demand for sporty SUVs which led to the recent introduction of the Tiguan Sportline, which has the gutsy 162kW 2.0-litre turbo petrol engine which was previously only available in the range-topping Highline variant.