What's the used Volkswagen T-Cross estate like?
You know what it's like – you wait ages for a bus and then two come along at once. It's the same with Volkswagen and small SUVs, because hot on the heels of the T-Roc came the T-Cross. Its arrival in 2019 means used car buyers now have the choice of not one but two diminutive SUVs from the Wolfsburg manufacturer.
Much like the T-Roc, the T-Cross has a 1.0-litre petrol engine in 94bhp and 114bhp flavours, along with a 148bhp 1.5, the latter being available only with a seven-speed DSG automatic gearbox. There's also a 94bhp 1.6-litre diesel engine for those who dedicate their lives to long-haul motorway driving.
There are five trim levels, starting with S, which has 16in alloy wheels, driver and passenger seat height and lumbar adjustment, air-con, and 8in infotainment system with a DAB radio and automatic emergency braking (AEB) with pedestrian detection and lane-keeping assistance. SE is better equipped with 17in wheels, a variable-height boot floor, adaptive cruise control, auto lights and wipers, plus Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone connectivity.
Alterations in 2020 brought in the United trim, which is based on SE. It actually has smaller 16in alloys but adds front and rear parking sensors. SEL has these, too, plus LED headlights, dual-zone climate control and sat-nav. For sportier looks both inside and out, choose an R-Line. This model also gets bigger 18in wheels and a 10.3in digital instrument cluster.
To drive, the T-Cross is a paragon of ease; the steering is light at low speeds to aid with parking, yet weights up in a natural fashion as the pace rises to give you a good idea of what the front wheels are doing. Grip levels are also high and it'll hang on well in the bends (as long as you're not being stupid) without running wide. However, it never feels as much fun as the firmer and more agile Ford Puma, nor is it as refined as the T-Roc when it comes to road or wind noise at motorway speeds.
Those who happen to be blessed in the height department will find there's plenty of room in the front of a T-Cross. Large door pockets can be found all around that'll take a litre bottle of water, plus from SE spec upward, there are multiple USB charging sockets front and rear. The only major downside is that interior quality appears to have taken a nosedive because there isn't a soft touch plastic in sight, unlike the less expensive Polo upon which the T-Cross is based. Also, unless you find a T-Cross with a Design Pack fitted, the dashboard has no coloured highlights at all and looks very drab as a result.
Much like the Renault Captur, the rear bench seat in the T-Cross can be slid forwards or backwards to either increase leg room or boot capacity. With the bench slide all the way back, there's as much space as the Suzuki Vitara and, due to the straight roofline, enough head room for a 6ft adult. That said, a Skoda Kamiq is better still, and the Kamiq has a bigger boot, even when you slide the seats in the T-Cross as far forward as it'll go.
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