By on August 2, 2017

2018 Volkswagen T-Roc

It’s the moment you’ve been waiting for. No, not the unveiling of Fiat Chrysler’s pavement-incinerating Dodge Demon, nor Tesla’s world — no, universe-saving Model 3.

No, the hottest thing in the land is the crossover, and no crossover breaks with staid utility vehicle norms quite like Volkswagen’s radical, two-door, pillarless, targa-top creation, the compact T-Roc. Hold on, that was the concept. Scratch that. The four-door, fixed-roof, happily pillared product of the concept’s metamorphosis will soon get its time in the spotlight, having been green-lit for production by a profit-focused VW.

The T-Roc, which kept the 2014 concept’s name despite dropping its ready-for-the-beach bodystyle, gets its big reveal on August 23rd, ahead of a global premiere at next month’s Frankfurt Auto Show. Can you handle it?

While some might say the production T-Roc, spotted earlier this year sans camouflage, bears a resemblance (when viewed from the front, anyway) to Ford’s Escape or even the defunct Dodge Caliber, it’s nonetheless an important product designed to bolster the recently introduced Atlas and newly enlarged 2018 Tiguan in VW’s U.S. lineup. As the brand’s smallest crossover, the T-Roc will slot below the previous-generation Tiguan, which stays on as the Tiguan Limited.

Having been drained of cash due to its own wrongdoing, VW’s post-Dieselgate hopes clearly lie in popular, high-profit crossovers. However, we’ll see the T-Roc well before Americans have the chance to buy one.

VW T-Roc display, Image: Volkswagen/YouTube

Production kicks off in the second half of this year, with the first vehicles going to European buyers. The T-Roc won’t arrive on North American shores for perhaps another year. According to a video released by VW, the model should contain the digital instrument display seen in the next-generation Golf. Not surprising, given it shares the Golf’s MQB platform.

What powerplants will make it to America remains unknown, but likely candidates include the new 150-horsepower 1.5-liter TSI four-cylinder and more than one version of VW’s turbocharged 2.0-liter. A 48-volt mild hybrid setup remains a possibility, potentially giving the T-Roc an enviable fuel economy figure.

[Image: CarPix, Volkswagen/YouTube]

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14 Comments on “Volkswagen’s Totally Toned-down T-Roc to Debut August 23rd...”

  • avatar

    It kinda looks like a mildly restyled Dodge Journey in that photo.

  • avatar

    I think I like it. I guess its Mazda CX-3 sized? Wonder what a 2.0T version will list at? $32K? Hope less.

  • avatar
    Kyree S. Williams

    Without quarter-panel windows and with those dimensions, it’s more or less a Golf on stilts.

    I’d rather have a Golf. Maybe this one:

  • avatar

    I thought T-Roc was one of the original characters in “The Walking Dead.”

  • avatar

    “Production kicks off in the second half of this year”…

    So… Now?

  • avatar

    “No, not the unveiling of Fiat Chrysler’s pavement-incinerating Dodge Demon, nor Tesla’s world — no, universe-saving Model 3.”

    Some day you’re gonna get smacked in the head by a windmill.

  • avatar

    It should almost be a class size up from the CX-3 and Chevy Trax, etc if Golf based, right? I think it looks handsome and way better than the overwrought Toyota C-HR and the dull Honda thingy based on the Fit.

  • avatar

    Gee. I don’t know, but do you think it might look vaguely like this car, only worse?×298-paint-change.gif

  • avatar

    “How do you do, fellow youth-centric SUVs?”

    Seriously though, this is painful how derivative, and likely successful, this thing is gonna be. That being said, 150 ain’t much to brag about….

  • avatar

    In related news, Hyundai/Kia has filed a lawsuit accusing Volkswagen of blatantly copying their CUVs.
    VW has denied the accusation, and insist that they only copied FCA vehicles.

  • avatar
    Clueless Economist

    Car companies need to stop over promising with cool concepts to only disappoint with the production model.

    VW has some serious style issues. First the Atlas and now this. Both are horrible designs. The T-Roc concept would have been a winner. The production version not so much.

    • 0 avatar

      Style depends on your taste. I don’t find either the Atlas or the T-Roc to be horrible designs. Just conservative if not a little derivative.

      Nothing wrong with that, at the very least 10 years from now the Atlas/T-Roc will have aged far better than some of its contemporaries (especially the C-HR). Daring designs are eye catching at first, but also quickly fall out of fashion and look outdated (example: 6th gen Sonata).

  • avatar
    Clueless Economist

    whynot, I agree with your comments in general about daring designs can look dated with time whereas conservative designs less so. The 2018 GMC Terrain is a good example of that. Not that the Terrain is a good design now, but it will look dated quickly.

    However, to my eye, the Atlas isn’t just conservative, it is an unappealing design. I may be wrong, but I don’t think it will ever sell in numbers VW needs for it to in order to be successful.

    The concept T-Roc was a good design. Period. It would have sold well if offered in both two and four doors.

    • 0 avatar

      Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. There are plenty of cars on the market that I personally find unattractive but have sold in the hundreds of thousands.

      Whether the Atlas will find lots of buyers or not will become clear in the next six months or so as production volumes ramp up. T-Roc will take longer, of course.

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