Volkswagen’s upcoming compact SUV will be based on the T-Cross Breeze concept; to share low cost MQB A0 platform with new Polo
Volkswagen is eyeing a sweet spot in India’s compact SUV market as we all know. The German auto major is focusing on its upcoming compact SUV that will be taking on the Hyundai Creta upon arrival, as reports suggest potential evaluation of its entry. The new SUV will be based on the Volkswagen T-Cross Breeze concept and it will be underpinned by the same platform as the latest generation Volkswagen Polo sold globally.
Currently, this segment is dominated by Hyundai Creta and with arrival of Volkswagen’s new SUV, the rivalry is expected to get intensified. It comes as part of Volkswagen strategy to become the affordable premium car brand in the country. Also, VW hopes to break Creta’s monopoly with this new T-Cross SUV, as the brand revealed its plan at the launch of the latest Passat.
The Volkswagen T-Cross SUV is expected to come here sometime in early 2019 and it will be based on the T-Cross Breeze concept showcased at the 2016 Geneva Motor Show in Switzerland. Based on the MQB A0 platform, it could appear with length of 4,133 mm, 1,798 mm in width and it will reportedly have a wheelbase of 2,560 mm. If we check the dimensional figures of T-Cross Breeze concept, then it can be said that the upcoming SUV would be 137 mm smaller in length compared to Creta.
Volkswagen is appearing to be bringing this SUV to India with high levels of localisation by trying to source components from Indian vendors and it could share plenty of elements with Skoda’s small SUV based on the low-cost platform that is being developed. The Volkswagen T-Cross SUV will likely come with aggressive pricing compared to Creta, throwing tough competition against the Hyundai SUV.
In terms of design and features the new VW SUV is expected to come pretty appealing and in line with the German brand’s contemporary models available in global market. Interesting fact is that, another model has a chance to be based on the ECO platform, on which both Volkswagen and its subsidiary Skoda are betting big to introduce a Jeep Compass rival. The ECO platform comes as a re-engineered version of the MQB architecture and it enables the cars to have lower production costs.
The first ever spy picture of the T-Cross based SUV emerged online a little while ago and as expected it has five doors unlike the flashy concept’s convertible two-door stance. By being based on the Polo, it could adopt small turbocharged petrol and engines with manual and automatic transmission options.
The rendering posted by AutoExpress shows the aggressive design adopted from the bigger T-Roc, giving a sportier stance. It features commendable ground clearance, large wheel arches, short overhangs, fat tyres and horizontal grille covering the width of the vehicle. It is expected to be launched in Europe next summer after the possible global premiere at the 2018 Paris Motor Show in October. It will likely get a 1.0-litre three-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine making 109 bhp.
It will compete against the Peugeot 2008, Citroen C4 Cactus, Hyundai Kona, Nissan Juke and the likes in Europe. With the wheelbase believed to be at 2,560 mm, it is 2 cm shorter than the Mk6 Golf and a massive 90 mm longer than the previous generation Polo. According to Volkswagen boss Herbert Diess, many improvements are being made on the brand’s vehicles in this particular category.
The small SUV is said to look “very sporty” and has a very exciting design with the grille being the only instantly recognizable element. It is expected to come with manual gearbox as standard while dual-clutch automatic will be given as optional. Four-wheel drive could be made available in the top-spec variants as well.
The upcoming B-segment SUV is reportedly codenamed VW216 in India. The Volkswagen Group is said to be invest €1 billion (approximately Rs. 7,600 crore) in the market in a bid to revive its fortunes. The brand establish a new production line at its Chakan plant and even set up an engineering centre exclusively for locally developed vehicles.
Volkswagen and Skoda will utilise the MQB A0 platform (low cost version of the flexible MQB architecture) to introduce a B-segment hatchback and sedan under Skoda as well as Volkswagen brands. The sedans could effectively replace the Vento and Rapid while the new hatchbacks may be launched in place of the Polo and Fabia.
Skoda has been given the job to develop the new platform and it is believed to hamper its entry into US as more focus has now been put on India. All in all, the T-Cross Breeze and upcoming Polo are expected to pull the brand back in the fray as customers’ preference for premium cars increased in recent times.
Volkswagen T-Cross Breeze Concept Images
Render Source: AutoExpress