Volkswagen Scirocco Coupe

£20,735 - £30,425

The Volkswagen Scirocco is one of the longest-established coupe names on the market and has tempted generations of sports-car buyers with its blend of eager performance, good looks and decent interior space. The current model was recently facelifted to keep it in contention with more modern arrivals including the Vauxhall Astra GTC, Audi TT, Peugeot RCZ, Renault Megane Coupe and BMW 2 Series.

The revisions to the Scirocco included new LED rear lights, redesigned headlights and restyled bumpers. The interior was largely left alone save for the addition of three circular instrument dials on the top of the dashboard that hark back to the original Scirocco. Overall, this is still one of the more distinctive-looking coupes that manages to be both sporty and reasonably practical.

There's a wide engine range, with everything from a fuel-sipping 1.4-litre petrol (52.3mpg) to the full-on Scirocco R (reviewed separately), which is powered by a 276bhp 2.0-litre petrol. Along the way there's a 182bhp 2.0-litre TDI diesel that manages 64.2mpg, yet can also go from 0-62mph in 7.5 seconds. It's our favourite engine in the line-up.

The Scirocco isn’t the most polished coupe out there – even fast versions of the VW Golf are better to drive. However, it's stable and grips well, plus it can be sharpened up with the optional Dynamic Chassis Control system.

The Scirocco is a spacious coupe, offering a surprising amount of room for rear-seat passengers. The boot's a good size, too, while the back seats split and fold so you can carry even more luggage.

Not including the top-spec R version, there are three trim levels: the entry-level model, GT and R Line. Standard equipment includes 17-inch alloys, automatic headlights, a touchscreen display, an auto-dimming rear-view mirror and air-conditioning.

The Scirocco is reliable and safe. It was awarded the full five stars by crash-test organization Euro NCAP and its safety equipment includes a comprehensive set of airbags, along with electronic stability control. ISOFIX mountings are standard, which is good news if you need to fit a child seat.