T-Roc rocks!

Volkswagen T-Roc, front
Volkswagen T-Roc, front
Volkswagen T-Roc, front
Volkswagen T-Roc, side
Volkswagen T-Roc, rear
Volkswagen T-Roc, rear
Volkswagen T-Roc, rear
Volkswagen T-Roc, interior

THE bright headlights fitted to so many cars these days are a boon for night driving, but they are hugely dangerous for other road users if they aren't properly adjusted.

So if you often get flashed by other road users when your lights are on dip, please get them checked to make sure they're not dazzling.

This was brought to mind the first time I drove the excellent Volkswagen T-Roc a couple of weeks ago.

I had only used it in daylight for the first couple of days, so when I had to go out at night, it came as a shock to find it was dazzling oncoming traffic.

Unfortunately, the headlights were self-levelling, and so there was nothing I could do to adjust them. My only option was to drive on sidelights, and used the headlights of the car in front to see where I was going.

I hate being dazzled so much, that I will not do it to others unless I have no alternative.

The T-Roc 1.6 diesel is otherwise a superb medium SUV that is only available with front wheel drive.

However, other models in the range are available with all wheel drive, so there is a large tunnel in the rear floor that compromises space a little. That said, there is enough room for five inside as long as the journey is not too long.

This engine has been around for many years, but has been continually refined and updated so that it now produces a very good 115bhp.

It's also quieter and more refined at low speeds than earlier versions, which could be a little agricultural at times.

That said, it does get noisy when asked to pull from anything under 1,400 revs.

From 1,500, it takes a split second to produce the power, but from 1,800 it gives maximum boost immediately and excellent acceleration in fourthgear.

The zero to 60 miles an hour time of under 11 seconds may not sound particularly good, but the power is there where you need it in the mid-range, and it's also capable of 64 miles per gallon, in the latest more realistic comparison figures.

That equates to around 50 in real use, which has to be very good.

The ride is really impressive, and the T-Roc insulates the occupants from rough country roads with huge ease.

But I found that it wasn't so good at slow speeds around town and I put this down to the larger than standard alloy wheels and low profile tyres fitted.

This is a problem in many cars and not just this VW. Stick to smaller rims and higher profile rubber and you'll almost invariably be more comfortable.

The latest SUV's all come with excellent road holding but this one is one of the best, tracking through the corners with excellent grip and lovely balance.

There's little roll and the seats hold in all the right places for great control, helped by the brilliant VW Group power steering.

Very good seat and steering column adjustment means every size of driver can get fully comfortable behind the wheel, and the boot is large, with a false floor adding a quarter as much again.

The Design model I drove comes with 17-inch alloys, adaptive cruise control with city emergency braking, phone mirroring so apps can be used on the eight inch screen, ambient lighting, a very good DAB stereo, two USB sockets and climate control.

FAST FACTS

Price: £24,660

Mechanical: 115bhp, 1,598cc, 4cyl diesel engine driving front wheels via 6-speed manual gearbox

Max Speed: 116mph

0-62mph: 10.9 seconds

Combined MPG: 64

Insurance Group: 12

C02 emissions: 115g/km

Bik rating: 31%

Warranty: 3yrs/60,000 miles

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