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Used test: Volkswagen Golf vs Volkswagen T-Cross costs

Comfy and practical, a used VW Golf is a great buy, but are you better off with a small SUV like the VW T-Cross?...

Used Volkswagen Golf 2013-2020 driving

Buying and owning

Costs, equipment, reliability, safety and security

When new, our VW Golf came in at £21,200, while the VW T-Cross would've set you back £19,555. After five years on the used market, they've wound up at roughly £13,000 each. 

Over the next three years, our data predicts the Golf will lose £3750 of its current value, which is less than it predicts the T-Cross losing, its figure being £4225. 

Volkswagen T-Cross side driving

The Golf is going to gobble up less of your fuel money, too. On our test route, it averaged an impressive 46.5mpg. The T-Cross still managed a commendable 45.1mpg average, though. 

Insuring either car should be a relatively affordable affair. The Golf, in insurance group 13 (out of 50), should set you back around £457. In group 10, the T-Cross should cost you even less: around £399. 

If you're interested in buying a service plan through VW, we were quoted the same £492 figure for either car and that included two services.  

Used Volkswagen Golf 2013-2020 infotainment

Both cars are a bit mixed for kit. They impress when you see they got adaptive cruise control and adjustable lumbar support fitted as standard from new. 

Then again, the T-Cross baffles when you spot that the original owner had to pay extra for rear parking sensors and a rear-view camera, as we touched upon. Both cars demanded extra for climate control, as well as keyless entry and start, too. 

Volkswagen T-Cross infotainment

In our 2023 What Car? Reliability Survey, the Golf managed an 18th place finish out of 29 cars in the family car class. Its reliability score of 90.4% is respectable at best. The T-Cross, out of 22 cars in the small SUV class, ranked eighth. Its score of 96.9% is more confidence inspiring. As a car brand, VW came 22nd out of 32 manufacturers, its score 90.2%.

After safety testing, the Golf was awarded the full five stars from Euro NCAP back in 2012, but this rating has since expired and the Golf was never retested – it's worth noting that this generation of Golf was replaced in 2020. Meanwhile, the T-Cross was tested in 2019 and its five-star rating still stands.