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2015 Volkswagen Street Up review

The Volkswagen Up is one of our favourite city cars. For 2015, VW has added this special edition with fresh styling inside and out, but is it right up our street?

Words ByDoug Revolta

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Volkswagen announced earlier this year that two new special-edition versions of its Up city car would be joining the line-up, and they’ve now arrived in the UK.

The Street and Club editions sit below the range-topping Rock Up and are based on the High Up. They feature fresh cosmetic tweaks inside and out for a Β£610 premium over the cost of the High Up.

The special editions share equipment levels and cost exactly the same: Β£11,995 for a three-door, or Β£12,370 for a five-door - but they offer different colour schemes. Are they worth the extra over a High Up?

What’s the 2015 Street Up like inside?

The main selling point of this special-edition Up is its interior features, and it’s brimming with equipment. It brings air-con, heated front seats, a portable infotainment system and front foglights from the High Up model and adds some styling revisions on top of that.

To help it stand out from the crowd, the Street Up gains 16in alloys, new paintwork, tinted rear windows, bespoke badging and chrome detailing around the foglights. Inside, there's a special cloth upholstery with yellow stitching, as well as a leather steering wheel.

The cosmetic alterations mean that it looks great on urban roads and, as much as it's a great car for town driving, the touchscreen sat-nav, DAB radio and heated seats mean that the Street Up is also a great companion on longer journeys.

Just as in other Ups in the range, the build quality in the interior is class-leading and everything is logically laid out and easy to use.

What’s the 2015 Street Up like to drive?

With changes on the Street Up focused solely on styling and equipment, prospective buyers will be pleased to hear that it's as good to drive as the other models in the range.

There’s only one engine choice, but the 74bhp three-cylinder 1.0-litre petrol engine it comes with is sweet enough for city driving and motorway trips. It’s quick off the line at traffic lights in town, and its steering is light, precise and confidence-inspiring.

With most things remaining the same from the normal versions of the Up, the main difference with this Street Up version is its ride. That’s because it comes with 16in alloys, as opposed to the standard 14in steel wheels that are fitted to entry-level models or the High Up's 15in alloys.

The result is that while the wheels look great on the Street Up, it crashes over bumps a bit more on uneven city roads than Ups on smaller wheels. Out on longer motorway stretches, too, there’s more road and tyre noise in the cabin, and engine noise invades the cabin over 4000rpm.


Should I buy one?

By keeping modifications to design and interior features, Volkswagen has done well not to tamper too much with the winning Up formula on this special edition. It’s as fantastic to drive as the rest of the Up range and its dark colour scheme with flashes of yellow will appeal to some.

However, we'd recommend avoiding those 16in alloys because of the negative impact it has on the ride. Ultimately, we’d recommend saving your money and sticking with the High Up; it's better to drive and comes with the same generous equipment list.

If you are desperate for a distinctive city car with lots of kit and a simple engine, it might be worth looking at the Up's special-edition sister car offerings. The Skoda Citigo Monte Carlo Edition and the Seat Mii by Mango both undercut the Street Up by almost Β£1000, but neither looks nor feels as high in quality inside.

What Car? says

**

Rivals**

Skoda Citigo

Seat Mii

Volkswagen Street Up 5dr

Engine size

1.0-litre petrol

Price

Β£12,370

Power

74bhp

Torque

75lb ft

0-62mph

13.2 seconds

Top speed

106mph

Fuel economy

60.1mpg

CO2

108g/km