New Volkswagen T-Cross SUV set to arrive in 2018

The new small VW Polo crossover is likely to be called the T-Cross and our exclusive images reveal how it could look.

Volkswagen’s belated assault on the SUV market will continue next summer with a Polo-based crossover that’s likely to be called the T-Cross, and our exclusive images show how it could look.

The Polo SUV will borrow styling cues from the larger T-Roc, such as its full-width grille and swollen wheelarches, for a more rugged and sportier look. It’ll also get a raised ride-height, too, which will further distinguish the SUV from standard models in the Polo range.

As with the Polo hatchback and SEAT Arona compact crossover, VW’s latest SUV will be based on the smallest version of its MQB platform. While details of engines have yet to be confirmed, we’d expect the range to start with a 109bhp 1.0-litre three-cylinder turbo petrol unit. Dual-clutch auto gearboxes will be offered alongside the manual units. It’ll compete head-on with cars like the Nissan Juke, Citroen C4 Cactus and Peugeot 2008.

Auto Express understands the wheelbase is likely to measure 2,560mm – that’s a hefty 90mm increase over the previous Polo generation and less than two centimetres shorter than the Mk6 Golf’s. Expect VW engineers to use this gain to improve rear passenger space and boot capacity, although short overhangs front and rear should ensure that the hike in overall length is much more modest.

The styling will remain conservative, with cues from the facelifted version of the Golf. Interior quality will be improved slightly, but the biggest tweaks in the cabin are likely to be in connectivity. VW boss Herbert Diess is said to have targeted enhancements in this area for all the brand’s vehicles.

“The baby SUV looks very sporty,” said one company insider. “You will wonder whether it’s a VW at all; you may recognise the grille, but it’s a very exciting design elsewhere.”

Less likely to make it into production is the drop-top roof that featured on the T-Cross Breeze concept at 2016’s Geneva Motor Show. There will, however, be at least the option of all-wheel drive, meaning the Polo SUV could be a capable little car in bad weather.

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