The Volkswagen T-Cross is a small SUV that was first revealed as a concept at the 2016 Geneva Motor Show; the production T-Cross is Volkswagen’s contribution to the hugely popular small SUV segment and went on sale in March 2019.

Rivals include the Citroen C3 Aircross, Renault Captur and Mazda CX-3, as well as the other similarly sized models within the Volkswagen Group: the Seat Arona, Audi Q2 and Skoda Kamiq. The T-Cross is the smallest of the five SUVs in Volkswagen’s range, sitting below the T-Roc, Tiguan, Tiguan Allspace and Touareg.

The VW T-Cross is powered exclusively by 1.0-litre TSI petrol engines, offered in two power outputs and with a choice of five and six-speed manual gearboxes or a seven-speed DSG. A diesel model may follow in due course, but demand isn’t high – diesels generally make up around 5 to 10 per cent of sales in this class.

The usual Volkswagen trim line-up applies. S kicks off the range and brings a decent – but by no means exceptional – level of standard equipment, with 16-inch alloys, cloth upholstery, manual seat adjustment and an eight-inch infotainment system with DAB radio and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity. Manual air conditioning, all-round electric windows and start-stop are also included, as is Volkswagen Connect – the German brand’s connectivity system that allows the monitoring of various car functions via a phone app, plus 24-hour access to a customer service helpline.

Simple petrol-only engine lineup works well; driving experience safe and easy rather than thrilling

The mid-forties fuel economy and low CO2 emissions of the T-Cross are par for the small SUV course

Some rivals are more funky to look at, but the cabin is smart and the in-car tech is class-leading

Cubby-filled, spacious cabin made even more versatile thanks to sliding rear seat bench

Strong safety scores are highly likely, but VW’s cars are only average as an ownership prospect

The step up to SE and you get 17-inch alloys, front foglights, black roof rails, a front centre armrest with air-con vents for the rear seats, a leather steering wheel, a variable boot floor, and an auto-dimming rear-view mirror. Rain sensing wipers and Adaptive cruise control with AEB also feature at this level along with ‘Car-Net App Connect’ – an improved phone connectivity and mirroring system.     

The SEL trim level adds slightly more supportive seats, different 17-inch alloys, LED headlights, rear tinted glass, silver roof rails, two-zone climate control, front and rear parking sensors, plus an uprated infotainment system with sat-nav. An upgraded Car-Net service is also included.

Top-spec R-line adds 18-inch alloys and a host of interior and exterior styling upgrades and a standard 10.25-inch Active Info Display digital instrument system.

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