2019 Volkswagen T-Roc Interior, Performance Review And Pricing


The T-Roc ushers in a new level of design emotion for the brand, with a cute, compact shape and lots of personalisation options. Best of all, it’s great to drive with spirited engines and a chassis that blends control and fun with a fair degree of comfort. 


T-Roc Crash Test



Inside there’s more space for passengers and luggage than in a Golf (thanks to the increased height), plus plenty of hi-tech connectivity, autonomous driving and safety kit available. 

However, somewhat surprisingly for a VW, the quality of the plastics in the cabin are poor – more in keeping with a budget brand than a Volkswagen. That’s especially so given the list prices, which are close to premium.



In terms of dimensions and price, the Volkswagen T-Roc is essentially an off-road version of the top-selling VW Golf. It's been for sale since 2017, and while it has a small price premium over the Golf, it has been popular with buyers, mainly thanks to an interior that's roomier than its hatchback sibling. Like the Golf, the range is comprehensive, starting at S trim and now moving all the way up to R-Line, which was introduced in 2018. A rapid T-Roc R with four-wheel drive and nearly 300bhp is also due to hit showrooms in 2019.

As the T-Roc is based on the Golf, it slots into the VW crossover range between the larger Tiguan and recently introduced T-Cross. Prices start from around £19,250 and reach as high as £34,000, and the T-Roc has a variety of rivals, including the Audi Q2 (which shares running gear with the T-Roc), Mazda CX-3, MINI Countryman, Mercedes GLA and lower spec versions of the Volvo XC40. There's also the Toyota C-HR and Honda HR-V to consider, and also the BMW X1 and X2 and Lexus UX.



Where the T-Roc breaks away from the Golf is with its funky looking interior. Rather than use the Golf's cabin wholesale, VW has added splashes of colour inside, including dash panels that are colour coded to the exterior. However, there is also more use of hard plastics inside, which might be a bit of a disappointment if you're moving from a Golf to a T-Roc.

There are a variety of turbocharged petrol and diesel engines offered. For petrol power, you can choose the 1.0 TSI 115PS turbo, which is surprisingly capable in the T-Roc, VW's latest 1.5 TSI Evo 150PS with cylinder deactivation, or the 2.0 TSI 190PS petrol. 

All petrol engines come with a six-speed manual except the 2.0 TSI, which has a seven-speed DSG auto - this is available as an option with the 1.5 TSI Evo engine. 4MOTION four-wheel drive is also standard with the 2.0 TSI, and optional with the 1.5 TSI Evo DSG motor.

2020 BMW X6 M Competition Performance Review


BMW’s M division has been actively hinting about the introduction of electric propulsion for some time now, but it clearly thinks the traditional combustion engine still has some decent life left in it – as witnessed by the launch of the new X6 M, the German car maker’s most powerful and fastest-accelerating production SUV model to date.


The new performance SUV builds on the various strengths of the already highly capable X6 M50i, launched in the UK late last year. It also shares its mechanical package with the arguably less flashy but more versatile X5 M, alongside which it is assembled at BMW’s Spartanburg factory in the US state of South Carolina.

But rather than provide the X6 M with the electrified drivetrain that the times we live in might tend to prescribe, M has given it no lesser an engine than the twin-turbocharged 4.4-litre V8 used by the latest M5. 



In standard guise, the highly strung petrol unit, which uses a cross-bank manifold as well as M’s double Vanos variable camshaft timing and Valvetronic fully variable valve timing to give it a high-revving character, kicks out a meaningful 592bhp. However, with different electronic mapping, among other unspecified changes, it gains a further 24bhp, taking the output of the Competition model sold in the UK to 616bhp at 6000rpm. In both cases, torque peaks at 552lb ft between 1800rpm and 5800rpm.

This gives the new flagship X6 model some 49bhp more than its predecessor and a stout 93bhp more than the X6 M50i. For added perspective, it is also 74bhp more than that served up by the Porsche Cayenne Coupe Turbo and 24bhp more than that offered by the Audi RS Q8 – both of which use the same twin-turbocharged 4.0-litre V8 petrol engine in differing states of tune.



Drive is channelled via an eight-speed torque-converter automatic gearbox with steering-wheel mounted shift paddles to an M xDrive four-wheel drive system that accommodates an M differential to apportion drive individually between the rear wheels. Together, they are engineered to provide the X6 M with a distinct rear-wheel-drive bias.

 In the words of M: “It only brings the front wheels into play when the rear wheels aren’t able to transmit any more power to the road and additional tractive force is required.”



Suspension changes over the X6 M50i include a substantial brace at both the front and rear for greater rigidity, increased track widths, extra camber for the front wheels and subtle tweaks to the active roll stabilisation system, which uses electric motors to suppress lean in corners. Standard wheels are 21in up front and 22in at the rear, with 295/35 ZR21 and substantial 315/30 ZR22 tyres respectively.


Pricing

Yes, it’s pricey – some £17,780 more than the arguably more rounded X6 M50i. But you might just be looking at a future classic – 284g/km of CO2 and all.