Volkswagen T-Roc Review & Prices

The Volkswagen T-Roc is a big-seller with a practical interior and lots of badge appeal, but alternatives are better to drive and cheaper to run

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RRP £28,330 - £40,155 Avg. Carwow saving £2,280 off RRP
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Reviewed by Tom Wiltshire after extensive testing of the vehicle.

What's good

  • Big boot
  • Quite peppy to drive on a twisting road
  • Straightforward interior tech

What's not so good

  • No hybrid or plug-in options available
  • Quite pricey compared with alternatives
  • Firm suspension

Find out more about the Volkswagen T-Roc

Is the Volkswagen T-Roc a good car?

The Volkswagen T-Roc is a bit like a Stanley cup - it’s slightly posh, pretty expensive and incredibly popular. Volkswagen sells almost as many T-Rocs as it does Golfs, so chances are if you’re looking for a small SUV, you’ve got a T-Roc shortlisted.

Luckily this Volkswagen does have quite a lot to recommend it. It’s practical, pretty good to drive, and has the enduring appeal of the Volkswagen badge.

The T-Roc sits between the T-Cross and the Tiguan in Volkswagen’s range of SUVs. It’s more stylish than the boxy T-Cross, and as well as the standard SUV can be had as the hot T-Roc R or the interesting T-Roc Convertible, both of which we’ve reviewed separately. It was launched in 2017 and underwent a pretty hefty facelift in 2022.

If you’re in the market for a small SUV, the T-Roc is just one of many cars you might be considering - and impressive alternatives include cars like the Peugeot 2008, Skoda Kamiq, and Ford Puma.

The T-Roc may not be particularly glitzy on the outside, but it’s stylish in a solid, classy way - and that continues on the inside, with an interior that’s more function over form but still operates well and feels quite good to sit in.

The T-Roc is a good all-round family car, but it’s beginning to feel a bit old hat next to more modern alternatives

Space is decent; though the back seats are only average, you do get a very big boot. Big rear doors make it excellent for child seats, too, and the T-Roc did score five stars in Euro NCAP’s crash-testing which is reassuring if it’s going to be used as a family car.

It’s pretty well-equipped as standard, too. Even entry-level cars get an 8.0-inch touchscreen that’s easy to use with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as standard, plus a digital driver’s display, climate control, all-round parking sensors and some smart storage solutions.

You do, however, pay handsomely if you want to move up the model range. The basic Life trim isn’t too expensive, but if you want the posher R-Line car with a more powerful engine the price jumps up quite a lot. With a few optional extras you can easily push the price over £40,000 - you can get a really nice BMW X1 M Sport for that sort of money.

The T-Roc does drive quite well for a small SUV, though. None of the engines have any hybrid or electric trickery, but that keeps the overall weight low - and that means it corners nicely and feels light on its feet around town. The engine range is good too, and there is even a diesel option and four-wheel drive available - both increasingly rare among compact SUVs.

At the entry level, there’s a 1.0-litre petrol with just 115hp which feels a bit sluggish. The 1.5-litre petrol with 150hp is probably the best all-rounder, with manual or automatic gearboxes available - while the 200hp 2.0-litre petrol is somewhat overkill. The diesels are great for very long-distance drivers, with miserly fuel consumption, but you won’t get the best from them around town.

If you like what you hear you can see how much you could save with Carwow’s Volkswagen T-Roc deals. You could also get a great deal by browsing used T-Roc models, as well as extensive stock of other used Volkswagens from our network of trusted dealers. When it’s time to sell your car, Carwow can help with that, too.

How much is the Volkswagen T-Roc?

The Volkswagen T-Roc has a RRP range of £28,330 to £40,155. However, with Carwow you can save on average £2,280. Prices start at £26,424 if paying cash. Monthly payments start at £285. The price of a used Volkswagen T-Roc on Carwow starts at £12,820.

Our most popular versions of the Volkswagen T-Roc are:

Model version Carwow price from
1.5 TSI EVO Life 5dr DSG £29,506 Compare offers

The T-Roc range kicks off at just over £28,000 for the ‘Life’ model, which does come well-equipped with a digital dashboard, 8.0-inch infotainment screen, LED headlights and all-round parking sensors. We’d recommend stepping up to at least Match trim, which brings bigger alloys, a rear-view camera and keyless entry for just a few hundred pounds more. 

Style and R-Line add extra luxury and sportiness, respectively through visual appeal and equipment, though the R-Line does get sports suspension. At the top of the range there’s the T-Roc R, which we’ve reviewed separately.

The T-Roc does seem quite expensive compared with cars of a similar size, such as the Peugeot 2008 or Skoda Kamiq - which both start at several thousand pounds less. Add on some desirable extras, such as an automatic gearbox or additional equipment, and the price soon jumps significantly.

Performance and drive comfort

The T-Roc is composed and can even be quite fun, though it’s not the most comfortable over bumps

In town

With good visibility and light steering the T-Roc is pretty easy to drive around town. While the suspension can feel a little firm over some bigger bumps - it’s not as cushioned as a Peugeot 2008, for example - it’s not unbearable by any means.

Though automatic gearboxes are usually easier for town driving, in the T-Roc we’d avoid the seven-speed DSG that’s available on certain engine variants. While it’s perfectly good most of the time, it can be annoyingly hesitant right when you need a quick response - such as if you’re trying to nip out into traffic at a junction or roundabout.

And unlike most of the alternatives you might consider, the T-Roc isn’t available with any hybrid, plug-in hybrid or electric engine options. Instead, you get just plain petrol and diesel - which aren’t the most efficient in heavy traffic. The hybrid powertrain of a Toyota C-HR suits urban driving much better.

On the motorway

The T-Roc feels composed at a cruise, and isn’t bothered by crosswinds - it’s quite relaxing, especially considering adaptive cruise control is fitted as standard to help you maintain your distance to the car in front.

Wind and road noise are well contained, though some of the engines - particularly the diesels - can be a little noisy, especially if you drop down a gear for an overtake. 

The firm suspension never really settles down either, leading you to feel expansion joints and poor surfaces more than you would in a vehicle with softer suspension.

On a twisty road

Out on twistier roads, the T-Roc holds its own really well. It’s not the most invigorating car to drive, but you can certainly have fun with it. You get a good sense of the road surface and grip beneath you as well - moreso than in a Peugeot 2008.

The T-Roc is notably lightweight compared with some alternatives - that’s the benefit of not fitting a hybrid powertrain - which means it feels nimble and  changes direction with more urgency than something like a Toyota C-HR.

Optional Dynamic Chassis Control (DCC) brings adjustable suspension, which helps numb the otherwise quite firm ride - it allows you to set the car’s suspension to its softest setting for a more comfortable trip, but to keep the engine and gearbox in their sportier settings for a more involving drive.

The T-Roc is rare in that four-wheel drive is available on certain models - very few small SUVs offer this. While this doesn’t exactly turn it into a miniature Land Rover, it might be useful if you live rurally and frequently need extra grip.

Space and practicality

Average rear seat space, but good storage and a huge boot

Volkswagen has done a good job of making the cabin of the T-Roc practical. There are large door bins, two central cupholders – albeit quite awkwardly-shaped ones – and a good space in the centre console to hold your phone when it’s connected to the infotainment system. 

The glove box is a decent size too, while the central armrest lifts up to reveal a small cubby. You can adjust the armrest by sliding it forwards and backwards, making it easy to get comfortable. You even get a useful drawer under the driver’s seat.

There’s loads of adjustment in the driver’s seat and notably in the steering wheel, which telescopes out a really long way - great if you’re tall. Electrically-adjustable seats aren’t even available as an optional extra, though, and having to adjust your own seat on a car that can cost well over £40,000 feels a bit mean.

Space in the back seats

The T-Roc is by no means small, but it’s a bit tighter in the back seats compared to the Peugeot 2008 or Skoda Kamiq.

Taller people in particular will find the rear seats to be a squeeze, with the legroom being rather limited. You’ll find your knees digging into the back of the front seats, while there isn’t the most foot room either. Headroom is quite good, even for adults. 

The middle seat though is not really an option for anything more than a short journey, as you’ll take up precious space from the feet of other passengers, and it’s not wide enough to hold three adults for too long. 

Storage is pretty good though, as you get a decent door bin, seat pockets for any devices or books, and a large folding armrest in the middle. It’s nice and easy to fit child seats, too, with wide-opening rear doors and just about enough space for a bulky rear-facing unit.

Boot Space

The T-Roc’s boot is one of the largest among small SUVs. With 445 litres of space, it’s bigger than the 400-litre Skoda Kamiq or the 434-litre Peugeot 2008, and dwarfs the 377-litre Toyota C-HR.

It’s a nice square shape, too, and all models get an adjustable boot floor which can be lowered for maximum volume or raised up to make a totally flat loading sill with no lip between the boot and the folded seatbacks.

The seats fold in a 60:40 split, and you also get a ski hatch to facilitate through-loading of long, narrow items.

Interior style, infotainment and accessories

The T-Roc hasn’t got the most exciting cabin around, but it’s simply styled and well-equipped

The T-Roc isn’t and never will be a style icon, but it’s all simply laid out and has clear lines across the dash. The majority of T-Rocs will come with dark grey and black trim for the cloth upholstery and dashboard.

The materials used high-up are of good quality, but lower down and in the back, scratchier plastics are easy to find and detract from the overall feel of the cabin quite a bit. There’s some ambient lighting that’s fitted as standard, which adds a little more character. It's a shame that, since the facelift in 2022, Volkswagen no longer offers the T-Roc with colourful inserts in the dashboard - these really brightened the interior up.

What you will have to contend with is a reduced amount of buttons in the central console. Yes, it looks simpler and easier to navigate, but the air conditioning controls are now consolidated to a touch-sensitive slider that’s tricky to use on the move.

With Apple CarPlay and Android Auto fitted as standard, you’ll likely to use that rather than the standard-fit infotainment system. That being said, it’s not a bad system — running smoothly and is easy enough to navigate on the go. 

As standard, you also get a digital driver’s display rather than conventional dials. There are multiple configurable displays too, so you’ll be able to find the setup and screen you’re happy with. 

MPG, emissions and tax

With a wide range of engines, T-Roc running costs extend from reasonable to somewhat less reasonable. Unlike many of its competitors, there are no hybrid or electric variants available, which does limit its appeal slightly.

The basic 1.0-litre engine is pretty efficient round town, and on a gentle run should be able to top 50mpg. The 1.5-litre petrol averages around 40mpg with a manual gearbox. The automatic makes it slightly less efficient around town, but does improve cruising economy because it allows for fewer revs in top gear. You’re likely to see around 35mpg from the 2.0-litre petrol.

The fuel-sipper in the range is the 2.0-litre diesel, which should be able to average over 50mpg and approaching 60mpg on a long run. However, it’s not great if you do lots of short trips as it’ll never really get a chance to warm up, and it’s also more expensive to buy.

Road tax costs are reasonable, as are benefit-in-kind company car tax costs, but the T-Roc will never compete with hybrid or PHEV alternatives on this score, let alone electric models, as its emissions are simply far too high in comparison.

Safety and security

The refreshed T-Roc hasn’t been retested by Euro NCAP, but when it was put through its paces in 2017 it scored five stars. That included high scores for both occupant categories (96% for adults, 87% for children) and decent returns on assists and pedestrian safety. That being said, Euro NCAP testing has become more intense since then. 

As standard, the T-Roc comes with automatic emergency braking, lane keep assist, front and rear parking sensors, driver alert system and cruise control. If you have an automatic, you get adaptive cruise control with distance control, which makes driving longer distances much easier. 

You also get curtain airbags for the front and rear, ISOFIX points and e-Call for Europe to make sure you and your passengers are safe.

Reliability and problems

A limited number of the pre-facelift T-Roc had issues with bonnets coming loose and a faulty seatbelt retractor, but besides those, the T-Roc manages to be quite a reliable car. Not the most reliable, but certainly unlikely to let you down. 

Volkswagen doesn’t offer the best warranty package around, but the first two years have an unlimited mileage warranty which is helpful. The third year of warranty can be finished early if you reach 60,000 miles from new. VW does offer extended warranty packages from £140 per year.

Buy or lease the Volkswagen T-Roc at a price you’ll love
We take the hassle and haggle out of car buying by finding you great deals from local and national dealers
RRP £28,330 - £40,155 Avg. Carwow saving £2,280 off RRP
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Compare new offers Compare used deals
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