Volkswagen’s smallest SUV, the new T-Cross, unveiled in three cities at once

VW introduces its new T-Cross - due in Ireland next year - with the help of Cara Delevigne and her 41 millino Instagram followers

Ralf Brandstätter, chief operating officer of Volkswagen was joined on stage by supermodel and actress Cara Delevigne. It is her 41-million Instagram followers that VW found much more tempting than the traditional surrounds of a motor show

Ralf Brandstätter, chief operating officer of Volkswagen was joined on stage by supermodel and actress Cara Delevigne. It is her 41-million Instagram followers that VW found much more tempting than the traditional surrounds of a motor show

 

Volkswagen skipped the Paris motor show this year, and now we know why. The German giant was planning to get the airwaves all to itself for the launch of its new T-Cross, which has taken place in three cities almost simultaneously.

The T-Cross was unveiled in Amsterdam, Shanghai, and Sao Paulo in Brazil all on the one day. Ralf Brandstätter, chief operating officer of Volkswagen brand, explained at the world premiere in Amsterdam: “We’re actually presenting the T-Cross today three times over - we unveiled it a few hours ago in Shanghai, and São Paulo will follow later tonight. It shows just how important the T-Cross is to the Volkswagen brand as a truly global product.”

Brandstätter was joined on stage in Amsterdam by supermodel and actress Cara Delevigne, and it is her 41-million Instagram followers that VW found much more tempting than the traditional surrounds of a motor show.

The T-Cross for Europe will be built at VW’s Navarra plant in Spain, alongside the Polo with which it shares a chassis
The T-Cross for Europe will be built at VW’s Navarra plant in Spain, alongside the Polo with which it shares a chassis

Underneath, the T-Cross shares its platform with the Seat Arona, and with next year’s new Skoda Scala hatchback. It should be spacious, with a 2.6-metre wheelbase, and the boot can expand from 385-litres to 455-litres, thanks to an adjustable rear seat.

Four engines have been announced for the launch model, and only one of them is a diesel - a 1.6 TDI four-cylinder with 95hp. There are two versions of the 1.0-litre TSI turbo petrol three cylinder, with either 95hp or 115hp, and a range-topping 1.5 TSI petrol with 150hp. A lineup identical to that of the Arona, basically.

Underneath, the T-Cross shares its platform with the Seat Arona, and with next year’s new Skoda Scala hatchback
Underneath, the T-Cross shares its platform with the Seat Arona, and with next year’s new Skoda Scala hatchback

The T-Cross for Europe will be built at VW’s Navarra plant in Spain, alongside the Polo with which it shares a chassis. Production will also take place in South America and China.

It’s part of a major SUV-shaped product offensive by VW, which knows that it has to catch up fast in that arena. After all, sister brand Seat has had the Arona on sale for a year already, while car’s biggest rivals - the Nissan Juke and Renault Captur - are getting ready for replacement by second-generation models. Still, it seems that there’s room in the compact crossover market yet - VW expects the segment to double in volume between now and 2027. Expect to see a lot of T-Crosses about, in that case.

Irish specification and prices will be announced closer to the car’s on-sale date in 2019.