mReview: 2022 Volkswagen T-Cross - Refreshingly Analogue

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Editors%2 Fimages%2 F1678669718026 T Cross FeaturedIn a market saturated with compact crossovers that are all vying to create the same user experience, the Volkswagen T-Cross is indeed a breath of fresh air.

Other manufacturers have opted to load their entry-level vehicles with guff in a bid to shift units. Volkswagen opted to embrace the T-Cross' honest-to-god characteristics instead. All the money that has gone into the vehicle has been spent wisely, to create a genuinely continental experience at an entry-level price point.

Looks That Betray its Age

It is this rugged look that contributes to a design that really doesn’t look its age. Despite the design being almost half a decade old, it actually still manages to go toe-to-toe visually against cars that were designed and/or facelifted more recently.Editors%2 Fimages%2 F1678669744449 T Cross 05And you can expect the car to look fresh for years to come. That’s because its designers appear to not have fallen into the design fad pitfalls of the late 2010s. Crisp, but crucially simple, lines have been used to define the profile of the vehicle, and relative simplicity has been adhered to elsewhere, keeping the car looking fresh.

Don’t get me wrong - there still is some stylistic fussiness. But impressively, the Volkswagen designers have managed to incorporate a design trend, a rear light bar, that is popular amongst new cars today into a sketch that was penned in the mid-2010s.

Proper Space Inside

Whilst you do not have a lot of excess space within the cabin, there’s just about enough room for you to be comfortable. Aside from the contrast trim on the dashboard, you’d find a distinct lack of squidgy materials within the cabin. Still, build quality is excellent - everything feels properly screwed in. The switchgear used happens to be your typical VAG fare, so you’d be getting buttons and panels that have also been fitted to cars costing significantly more.Editors%2 Fimages%2 F1678669752123 T Cross 08Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are available on your infotainment screen. However, being a slightly older system, the former is wired. Not the end of the world, seeing that some other, more premium vehicles also require the use of a cable. Sound quality is also excellent, with it soundly beating systems in cars that cost significantly more. This is partially due to our test car’s optional Beats audio system.

How Does it Drive?

The T-Cross is actually very entertaining on the move. You actually feel more connected to the car than other vehicles in its class. It is surprisingly analogue-feeling, the sufficient steering feedback and quick rack allowing you to accurately place the car where it needs to be. Which is useful when navigating through tight, older car parks.Editors%2 Fimages%2 F1678669762156 T Cross 06It doesn’t ride as well as some of its closest rivals, but I’d take better handling over ride comfort any day of the week. The stiff suspension also helps the car to better resist the twisting forces generated by its engine, despite its higher ride height.Editors%2 Fimages%2 F1678669770905 T Cross 07And this motor happens to be the same 1.0 litre, three cylinder lump that you’d find in other VAG cars. It behaves ever so slightly differently in this application though. You aren’t insulated from the traits of a heavily turbocharged three cylinder as compared to other VAG cars with the same engine. Also, whilst the seven speed DSG is good once the car is up to speed, the first to second change can be slightly clunky in stop-start traffic.

Could This be the Best Compact Crossover Buy Today?

There are other cars in its class that offer plusher cabins and greater refinement. But there’s always a sense that these cars are trying a little too hard. Additional equipment and design fads may look and feel good when the car is new, though whether or not these withstand the test of time is another question altogether.Editors%2 Fimages%2 F1678669779584 T Cross 04And this is the T-Cross’ strength. You most certainly will not feel short changed buying one, as it has all the hallmarks of a solid, continental vehicle, sans their typical, eye-watering price tag. The simplicity, efficiency and timeless good looks also mean you’d have a car that will not look out of date even years down the road!

Volkswagen T-Cross Specifications
Price: $151,400  VES Band: A2
Turbocharge Inline 3
1.0 litre
114 bhp, 200 Nm
7 Speed DSG
Driven Wheels:
18.5 km/L
10.2 s
Top Speed:
193 km/h 
Fuel Tank Capacity:
40 L
4,108 mm x 1,760 mm x 1,584 mm
2,551 mm
Cargo Capacity:
385 L

Photo Credits: ACube Creative (@weareacube)

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