FRESH VIEW – Volkswagen T-Cross

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VW’s tiny new crossover is headed to SA, and it appears to be priced just right

With the demand for compact crossovers reaching new highs, it seems only logical that every automaker wants a piece of the pie. The latest is Volkswagen, with their new T-Cross, and the good news is that it is coming to Msanzi.

The T-Cross is actually Volkswagen’s smallest crossover. To give you an idea of its size, we should mention that it is based on the sixth-generation Polo. The T-Cross sits below the T-Roc in Volkswagen's global portfolio, which in turn sit below the Tiguan and the Touareg.

Being based on the Polo, means that it rides on the same MQB platform, and just like the Polo, it will be exclusively front-wheel drive. And because of this, it has allowed Volkswagen engineers to stretch out its wheelbase to a generous 2.56m and seat up to five adults, despite being only 4.11m long.

For the greatest possible versatility in the interior, its sliding rear seat can be adjusted by 14 centimetres, allowing more passenger leg room or more luggage space. The luggage compartment has a capacity that varies between 385 and 455 litres. If that’s not enough, the rear seatback folds down fully or partially to expand cargo volume to an impressive 1,281 litres.

It will launch globally with a choice of a single diesel engine, and three petrol engines - a 1.0 TSI three-cylinder petrol available with either 70kw or 85kw, and a 1.5 TSI four-cylinder petrol motor with 110kw. The sole diesel variant is a 1.6 TDI four-cylinder engine that produces 70kw. Although, the line-up for South Africa has yet to be confirmed. All engines comply with the latest Euro 6d-TEMP emission standard.

Standard equipment for the new T-Cross includes numerous driver assistance systems which were previously reserved for higher vehicle classes. Together with the vehicle's outstanding crash characteristics and exemplary occupant protection, these increase safety, reduce the risk of a collision and improve driving comfort.

Already included as standard equipment are the Front Assist area monitoring system with Pedestrian Monitoring and City Emergency Braking System, the lane keeping assistant Lane Assist, Hill Start Assist, the proactive occupant protection system, and the Blind Spot Detection lane change assist system with the integrated Rear Traffic Alert. Also available as options are the Driver Alert System, automatic adaptive cruise control and Park Assist.

Volkswagen South Africa have yet to release final pricing, but have said that the T-Cross will start at just under R300 000, when it does arrive in the third quarter of 2019. Expect it to go up against rivals like the Renault Duster, Ford EcoSport, Honda HR-V, Hyundai Creta and Suzuki Vitara. Volkswagen has also confirmed that the larger two-tone coloured T-Roc crossover – which was previously not earmarked for a local release – will in fact be introduced locally some time in 2020.

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