The VW T-Roc is, in a roundabout way, the replacement for the Scirocco. The coupe-ish hatchback went off sale a couple of years ago to give the T-Roc and other models some space on the production line in Palmela, Portugal.
A shame to see it go, but hey - times are changing, and the poor old MkV Golf-based car was getting on a bit. But soon there’ll be a new version of the T-Roc (which will be made at Osnabrück, rather than Palmela), which has even greater chance of triggering petrolheads. We’re talking about the new T-Roc Cabriolet. Yep, it’s happening.
Now revealed in near-production concept form, the T-Roc Cab is not much of a surprise - VW announced it was going to do one quite some time ago. It may share a name with the crossover, but most of the bodywork is different. It’s inevitably had to drop to a two-door configuration, and the wheelbase is longer.
The folding fabric roof can be raised or lowered on the move in nine seconds, so long as you’re not travelling any faster than 19mph. Should the worst happen, you’ll be well protected - there’s a roll-over protection system that pops out behind the rear headrests, while the window frame has been reinforced to stop it caving in when it has the weight of the car sat on it. Handy.
The engine line-up will be a simple one from launch, consisting only of a 1.0-litre three-cylinder unit pushing out 113bhp and a 1.5-litre inline-four developing 148bhp, both sporting turbochargers. The triple will be manual only, but anyone opting for the 1.5 will have the option of a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic. It seems unlikely that VW would fit the 2.0-litre ‘EA888’ TSI engine destined for the tin-top T-Roc R, but you never know.
In the cabin, you’ll find an eight-inch infotainment screen which can - if the right option is ticked - be paired with an 11.7-inch screen-based ‘Active Info Display’.
Exactly how it looks in there will also depend on which of the T-Roc Cabriolet’s two trims you pick - Style or R-Line. Go for R-Line, and you have sportier seats, along with cosmetic enhancements on the outside, a slightly stiffer chassis and faster steering.
The T-Roc Cabriolet will make its public debut at the Frankfurt Motor Show next month, before a Spring 2020 launch.