Volkswagen T-Roc long-term test: report 4

Can What Car?'s 5-star small SUV of 2023 be the perfect companion for our senior videographer? That's what we're going to be finding out over the coming months...

Using T-Roc air conditioning controls at night

The car Volkswagen T-Roc 1.0 TSI 110 Life Run by Kiall Garrett, senior videographer

Why it’s here To prove whether this five-star small SUV can be big enough and comfortable enough to meet the demands of regular long-distance load-lugging journeys.

Needs to be spacious enough to carry around lots of camera equipment and chew through long motorway journeys with ease while delivering good fuel economy on a town-based commute.

Mileage 2186 List Price £27,815 Target Price £26,414 Price as tested £30,585 Official economy 47.1mpg Test economy 39.8mpg

7 February 2024 – Let there be illuminated climate controls

When the Volkswagen T-Roc was first launched, it came with good old physical buttons and dials for the climate controls.

As part of its mid-life facelift last year, someone at the German manufacturer decided these brilliantly simple and effective controls should be deleted and replaced with a touch-sensitive panel, which are far more fiddly to use while driving – and unfortunately, replacing physical controls with touch-sensitive alternatives is a trait that is becoming more and more common in new cars. 

Using the T-Roc climate controls at night

However, using the T-Roc’s air conditioning controls haven’t been anywhere near as frustrating as I had anticipated. That’s because the area you need to tap at is quite large, it’s responsive and, importantly, it’s illuminated so you can see it easily when it’s dark.

The T-Roc's illuminated climate controls

It’s not better than physical controls, but it is better than some other fully models from the brand, notably the Volkswagen ID 4 electric SUV, which has a similar setup but no lighting – so you have to use the force to change the temperature at night.

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