2021 Volkswagen T-Cross Review

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The Volkswagen T-Cross is a small SUV that’s part of a booming trend that’s giving hatchbacks a run for their money. This is because their raised driving position, paired with family car practicality, affordable running costs and good equipment levels make it a perfect option if you regularly carry several passengers.


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2021 Volkswagen T-Cross design

2021 Volkswagen T-Cross front side shot

Straight away you might be asking yourself what the difference is between the Volkswagen T-Cross and the T-Roc. Well, you’d be right to ask this question because on the face of it they’re too very similar cars. However, the T-Cross is actually the smaller brother of the T-Roc, the latter of which is slightly larger and isn’t as box-like in its styling.

As for the styling of the VW T-Cross, you’ll be glad to know that typical Volkswagen quality is on display. Even the entry-level SE specification comes with 17in alloy wheels, black roof rails, and a radiator grille covered with a high gloss surface and chrome strip.

For those of you who like your vehicle personalisation, there’s a whopping 12 colours to choose from that include fluorescent options or more neutral colours, depending on your preference. You can even have the spokes of your T-Cross’ wheels set as the same colour as the car itself.

2021 Volkswagen T-Cross rear shot

There’s nothing featured on the T-Cross that’s overly styled and that theme continues as you move around the car. At the back there’s a neat integrated roof spoiler and a neat rear LED ‘strip’ which incorporates smart tech that lights up in a modern, snazzy way when you brake.

As we’ll get into in a later section of this blog, the Volkswagen T-Cross isn’t designed to be as fun to drive as the T-Roc. But despite this, if you want to turn your small family car into a bit of a track star when it comes to looks, we recommend looking at Black Edition and R Line models. The former blacks out the T-Cross and adds decorative inserts to give it a bit less innocence, while the R Line takes it a step further and chucks in an aggressive R-Line bodykit, plus chunkier 18in alloy wheels.


2021 Volkswagen T-Cross interior

2021 Volkswagen T-Cross interior

What most drivers will like about the Volkswagen’s T-Cross interior is how modern and elevated it is. Quite literally you sit farther from the road in the T-Cross than you do in a Ford Puma, Kia Stonic and Skoda Kamiq. This gives you a commanding view of the road ahead, working wonders for your visibility at junctions too thanks to the vehicle’s slim pillars.

There are nice shiny body-coloured plastics inside the T-Cross that give the cabin an airy feel, as do the big windows. What’s more is each trim level comes with an 8in infotainment touchscreen display that nestles smartly into the dashboard and comes as standard with Bluetooth connectivity, USB charging and DAB radio.

For the best interior trim check out the SEL or R Line trims which get much more pizzazz thanks to decorative inserts inside and upgraded upholstery.

2021 Volkswagen T-Cross dashboard

2021 Volkswagen T-Cross infotainment and tech


The SE trim comes with a second USB charging port and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity which lets you mirror your smartphone on the car’s screen.

If you want a bigger display, you have the option to upgrade to a larger 9.2in screen that comes with voice control as standard. Regardless of which one you choose, the software is very user-friendly and is pretty intuitive when you’re interacting with it.

There’s plenty of clever technology onboard the Volkswagen T-Cross as standard. For example, each spec is equipped with lane keeping assist, automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control and a driver alert system that can detect when you’re fatigued and alert you to take a break. These safety systems earned the car a five-star Euro NCAP rating in the latest round of testing.

At the more premium end of the T-Cross range, the SEL trim gets even more comfort tech that make longer journeys enjoyable for all the family. This includes dual-zone air conditioning and front and rear parking sensors which make it possible for those in the front and back to control their own temperatures, while the parking sensors make manoeuvring a doddle.


2021 Volkswagen T-Cross practicality

Volkswagen T-Cross back seats

Although the Volkswagen T-Cross is smaller than the T-Roc, in a way it’s actually more practical because of clever features it has onboard.

For starters, in the front of the car you’ve got plenty of legroom like you would in the Polo that it shares its underpinnings with. The T-Cross also has a high roofline which means you get plenty of headroom whether you’re sat up top or in the back.

There are lots of storage spaces in the T-Cross you can take advantage of when you’ve got your hands full. In the front there’s a sliding drawer under the driver’s seat, then you get big door bins, a large glovebox and a plethora of trays, cupholders and cubbies for your other bits.

The T-Cross may be a small SUV but you get a decent amount of room in the back. A couple of six-footers will be fine getting comfortable back there. A small central floor tunnel means the middle seat can be used by another adult, though we wouldn’t say it’s fit for long journeys with three adults sat abreast.

A good feature of the Volkswagen T-Cross is the sliding rear seats which feature on every spec and let you prioritise boot or passenger space.

Volkswagen T-Cross boot space

Speaking of boot space, it’s pretty good by the standards of a small SUV – 455 litres. The sliding rear seats mean you can increase this to become as big as the Nissan Qashqai’s. SE trim levels and above come with a height-adjustable boot floor too which mean you can take the strain out of lifting heavier items into the back by reducing the load lip.


2021 Volkswagen T-Cross driving

2021 Volkswagen T-Cross driving

The Volkswagen T-Cross rides fairly well for a small SUV and remains stable even when you hit some bumps, potholes or uneven surfaces.

Through town the T-Cross has light steering which is perfect for parking and manoeuvring through traffic. This doesn’t firm up as much as the Ford Puma’s when you get up to motorway speed, so it’s not as fun here. However, the T-Cross does get weightier and there’s plenty of grip to keep the car balanced when driving long-distance.

A simple engine range makes it bliss to pick a Volkswagen T-Cross to suit your needs. The entry-level 1.0-litre petrol engine might only have 95bhp but its turbocharger means it’s nippy enough for most, though the 0-60mph time of 11.8 seconds won’t promise bucketloads of fun.

We’d recommend looking at the punchier 110bhp version of this engine which cuts this 0-60mph time down to 10.8 seconds. It’s no less efficient either, with the same combined fuel economy of 50mpg keeping running costs low.

At the very top of the T-Cross range is a bigger 1.5-litre petrol unit with 150bhp that is only available with a smooth automatic gearbox. The extra power means you can accelerate from 0-60mph in a mere 8.5 seconds which feels very punchy. It’s also reasonable on fuel too, with a combined fuel economy of 48mpg.


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