Volkswagen T-Roc SUV - Interior & comfort
The VW T-Roc interior matches the Golf for comfort, if not for quality
A car that looks as good as the T-Roc needs a similarly funky interior – thankfully, VW has provided. A small SUV should offer enough space for small families and feel a little more comfortable than the equivalent hatchback, too – something VW seems to have pulled off. There’s decent head and legroom all round, with enough space for two six-foot tall passengers to sit one behind the other thanks to generous VW T-Roc dimensions.
Ride quality is at its smoothest on 17-inch alloy wheels. If you'd rather the more distinctive looks of the bigger wheels, it's worth going for the all-round adaptive dampers that come as part of the Dynamic Chassis Control system, although even these won't smother the very sharpest of potholes.
The car’s interior is quiet at a cruise; you soon realise that the prominence of wind noise from around the door mirrors is down to the hushed nature of the engine and tyres.
Volkswagen T-Roc dashboard
The T-Roc may not look quite so imaginative inside as it does externally, but the sharply-shaped dashboard is more stylish than most other Volkswagen offerings, and is helped by body-coloured trim inserts on some trim levels.
We're a little disappointed, though, by some of the materials. Although the textures used are very attractive to look at, every surface is hard to the touch and this comes as something of a surprise after years of praising the soft-touch materials that have become the norm in Volkswagen models. They've even become commonplace in Skoda and SEAT models, many of which have more tactile finishes to their dashboards.
Everything is very solidly assembled, though, with no obvious creaks or groans, it's just a shame that the smart looks of the interior are let down by the way it feels.
The T-Roc is available in seven trim levels: S, SE, Active, Black Edition, Design, SEL and R-Line. S includes now-essential features like Bluetooth, digital radio and all-round electric windows, plus dual-zone climate control, an auto-dimming rear-view mirror, alloy wheels and LED daytime running lights. Standard SE equipment is fairly generous, as the eight-inch infotainment system gets Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity. Other standard features include a rear central armrest and ski hatch, all-round parking sensors, power-folding and heated door mirrors, roof rails and adaptive cruise control. A leather gearknob and steering wheel are also standard.
The good-value Active model comes with 17-inch alloy wheels, heated seats, ‘Active’ badging and an electric boot door, plus an upgraded sat nav. The Black Edition trim adds a number of black styling pieces, including a darkened finish to the wheels, front grille, window surrounds, side skirts and door mirror surrounds. It also gets black exhaust tailpipes, LED headlights, daytime running lights and grey contrast stitching throughout the interior.
Design specification is largely an exercise in aesthetics, with a choice of contrasting roof colours, chrome exhaust pipes, tinted rear windows, sportier bumper styling outside and a choice of coloured trim for the dashboard inside, along with LED reading lights, Illuminated front footwells and ambient lighting. Design trim also adds a useful Driver Alert System that warns of driver fatigue.
SEL models get 18-inch alloys, LED headlights, an uprated infotainment system with sat nav and the 10.3-inch Digital Cockpit Pro screen that replaces traditional dials. Also included is three years' access to the We Connect Plus service, which provides information on traffic, fuel prices, weather and more via the internet. There’s also an emergency call system that can automatically alert the emergency services after a crash and connect to a dedicated app on your smartphone to control some car functions.
R-Line brings a much sportier look, with lowered suspension, 19-inch alloy wheels, unique badging and a body kit. There’s also heated front sports seats and heated washer jets.
Unlike rivals like the Kia XCeed, the T-Roc offers a vast range of options, with Volkswagen being particularly keen to facilitate personalisation. A range of 17 and 18-inch wheels is available (ranging from around £150 to £400), which can also be paired with the Dynamic Chassis Control system (around £1,000), which gives a choice of driving modes and suspension settings. Sports suspension is a cheaper option for keener drivers, offering a lower ride height and progressive steering to improve cornering (around £400). LED headlights, if not fitted, are optional too.
Leather heated sports seats cost over £2,000, while a heated steering wheel can be added for around £330.
SEL cars get Volkswagen’s Digital Cockpit Pro as standard, a 10.3-inch TFT screen that replaces the car’s traditional dials behind the steering wheel. The display shows everything from speed to sat-nav directions and can be easily adjusted to your preferences. It’s available on other models as an option (roughly £450) – we think it’s definitely worth the money, especially if sat nav is fitted (costing around £1,000, or standard on SEL models). However, it's a shame this isn't standard, as is increasingly the case across the industry.