Volkswagen has been in the headlines for all the wrong reasons of late. But, emissions scandals aside, let’s not forget that they make great cars. For a long time, the Golf and the Polo were two of their best options for the city car market. These days, however, there’s a new kid in town – the Up! And, it’s worth your consideration if you are looking for a small set of wheels with a little extra sophistication. Read on to find out more in our brief review.
When you think of compact city cars, you tend to imagine small vehicles with not much going on in the interior. The Up! Is certainly small. However, it’s surprisingly luxurious. We’ll be honest, it looks OK from the outside, without being spectacular, and there’s little to separate it from the competition. But, get behind the wheel and you will notice the differences straight away.
You have two engine choices. The new Volkswagen comes with a 1.0-litre standard petrol engine, but you can choose between a 59bhp or 74bhp model. You can also invest in a good variety of extras. The VW BlueMotion Technology is worth a look, as are the fuel economy components to help you save money at the pumps. If you want to go down the whole eco-route, there’s also an electric version of the car. It is pricey, however, and doesn’t have much storage, so avoid if you are planning on longer distance travel.
Let’s take a look at the driving experience offered by the Up! It’s small, agile, and perfect for getting around narrow streets and tight corners. There’s a fantastically small turning circle, too, and it’s simple to park. It’s good on the motorways, too. You never get the feeling the Up! Is struggling – which is more than can be said for other city cars.
There are seven trim options available, and if you are willing to spend the money you end up with a quite luxurious set of wheels. You get a CD player and Isofix seat belts as standard, but head up the levels and you can expect a lot more. At the top of the range, you can expect alloy wheels, heated front seats and a removable touchscreen sat nav. Even the lower range options are super comfortable. Bumps can be a big problem for small cars, but the Up! Seems to flatten them out well. There’s a surprising amount of room on the inside, too.
There’s no diesel option, of course. But, as you will know, that’s not much of a problem if you are buying a city car, as petrol is more economical on busy streets. The 59bhp version runs around 62.8mpg – this rises to 65.7mpg if you go for the BlueMotion technology version. The 74bhp engine runs for 60.1mpg – not a terrible loss when you consider the extra power. But, you get a gain if you go for the BlueMotion option, and you can expect around 67.3mpg – further than the 59bhp model.
Fancy getting down with the Up!? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section!
After more than 40 years as a marketing and advertising professional, Bob has made the transition from traditional to new media, providing companies with marketing consultation for the 21st century. He also writes extensive Web content on dozens of industries, including the automotive market, as well as social media, mobile marketing and many other technology topics.
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