‘UP! - YOURS?’
Added 13th January, 2017
By Jonathan Crouch
This is the very essence of a small, affordable Volkswagen, a high quality class-less car very much in the mould of the original Beetle. One of the lightest small runabouts you can buy, it still manages to feel solid, a triumph of packaging and design that’s streets ahead of any citycar the brand has previously brought us. Highlights include superb space efficiency, a brilliant detachable infotainment system and a city braking function that’ll pay for itself in peace of mind. All very clever and in execution, all very German - which might have delivered to the showrooms a very impressive but essentially rather soul-less result. Fortunately, the up! has enough character to make you like it as well as admire it - something crucial in an increasingly fashion-led market segment.
If you like the look and you can afford to go beyond entry-level poverty spec, then there aren’t too many downsides here. A few rivals can better the running costs - but not by much. And the SEAT and ŠKODA versions of this car are a little cheaper - but you’d likely lose what you gained in the probable trade-in value when the time came to sell. Overall then, this is the embodiment of friendly functionality behind a badge you probably thought you couldn’t afford. With potential cleverness you almost certainly won’t be expecting from something citycar-sized. A thumbs up! then? That’s about the size of it.