Update: ‘Second-generation VW T-Roc confirmed with hybrid’ section updated.
The VW T-Roc, the German automaker’s Euro-focused compact crossover, received its mid-life facelift in November 2021. Volkswagen is amid a massive EV onslaught, but it left out electrification in the compact crossover segment. The company hasn’t introduced any sort of electrification in the T-Roc for the 2023 model year either.
Volkswagen didn’t implement mild-hybrid technology in the sixth-generation VW Polo or second-generation VW Tiguan facelifts in 2021. The company has ruled-out electrification for the current T-Roc as well. The 2023 VW T-Roc is available with conventional 1.0L TSI gasoline, 1.5L TSI gasoline, 2.0L TSI gasoline, and 2.0L TDI diesel engine options. A 6-speed manual and 7-speed dual-clutch automatic remain the transmission choices, and an AWD system is available optionally.
2023 VW T-Roc design
The 2023 VW T-Roc carries over the previous model’s design, which includes subtle changes from the pre-facelift model that wasn’t as sharp. IQ.Light with LED matrix headlights and a light strip in the radiator grille gave the T-Roc a more sophisticated look and improved its road presence with the facelift in 2021. The reshaped motif on the front bumper sides gave it a tougher styling. Newly designed alloy wheels in 17 and 19-inch sizes and revised rear lights with new graphics and dynamic turn signals were also among the exterior changes.
The VW T-Roc hasn’t received any interior design changes either with the MY2023 update. Previously, Volkswagen introduced a newly designed dashboard, a sleeker steering wheel, a more contemporary center console housing a new climate control panel, and a new tablet-style touchscreen infotainment system from the MIB3 family. There are no changes on the safety front either. IQ.DRIVE Travel Assist and Predictive Cruise Control which allow assisted steering, braking, and acceleration were new in 2021.
VW T-Roc Cabriolet
Volkswagen continues to offer the cabriolet body style of the T-Roc. Like the outgoing model, it features an electrically operated, three-layer, soft fabric top that can open in under nine seconds. It is available in Style and R-Line trims.
Customers going for the soft-top get three powertrain options. They get to choose from an 81 kW (109 hp) 1-liter TSI that can be had with a 6-speed manual gearbox. A more powerful 1.5-liter TSI with 110 kW (148 hp) is also on offer. This engine can be had with a 6-speed manual gearbox or a 7-speed DSG.
The VW T-Roc costs EUR 25,800 (USD 28,034) onwards. On the other hand, the T-Roc Cabriolet starts at EUR 34,635 (USD 37,635) for the base Style variant with the 1-liter TSI engine.
Second-generation VW T-Roc confirmed with hybrid
On March 5, 2021, Volkswagen confirmed in an announcement that a second-generation T-Roc exists in the pipeline. In an interview with Automobilwoche, which the German publication released on April 2, 2023, CEO Thomas Schäfer said that the company plans to launch the next-gen Passat and next-gen Tiguan in 2023, then the (European) Tayron (Tiguan Allspace successor) in 2024, and then the next-gen T-Roc, “towards 2025.” He confirmed that the next-gen T-Roc will be the last Volkswagen with an internal combustion engine.
T-Roc fans disappointed by the lack of electrification can get their hopes up. In the announcement dated March 5, 2021, Volkswagen confirmed that the future T-Roc will be available with plug-in hybrid technology. The company classifies T-Roc, Golf, Tiguan, Passat, and Tayron as core models that will receive successors with plug-in hybrid technology and an electric range of 100 km (62 miles).
We will still need combustion engines for a while, but they should be as efficient as possible, which is why the next generation of our core products (including Golf, Tiguan, Passat, Tayron and T-ROC) – all of which are world models – will also be fitted with the latest generation of plug-in hybrid technology, with an electric range of up to 100 kilometers.Ralf Brandstätter, former CEO, Volkswagen Passenger Cars, in March 2021
The VW T-Roc PHEV should get a new Volkswagen plug-in hybrid powertrain that consists of the 1.5-liter TSI EVO petrol engine and a permanent magnet synchronous motor integrated into the gearbox housing. A lithium-ion battery pack with an energy storage capacity of around 15 kWh could supply the electric motor. The all-new system may debut in the next-gen VW Tiguan.
With Volkswagen targeting an EV mode range of up to 100 km (62 miles) from its next-gen PHEVs, the T-Roc PHEV could be among its most eco-friendly internal combustion engine models. The company could equip it with an 11 kW three-phase on-board charger to encourage customers to use it mostly in EV mode due to faster charging (compared to older PHEVs with lower capacity single-phase OBCs).
The next-gen VW T-Roc promises to improve its driving dynamics. Volkswagen is developing a new control chassis technology and could offer it in the next-gen T-Roc. When the company demonstrated its new high-tech chassis in an Arteon Shooting Brake in November 2021, the car was very composed, showing no pitching. The new control chassis offers comfortable driving, which could also be helpful to make performance models like the T-Roc R more practical for public roads.
1+ million T-Roc units sold
It’s not surprising that VW thinks of the T-Roc as its core model. In 2017, the crossover was launched, followed by the sporty T-Roc R by the end of 2019. Spring 2020 onwards, VW also introduced the T-Roc Cabriolet which has contributed to the overall sales. Within four years of its launch, Volkswagen had managed to sell 1 million units of the T-Roc worldwide. In 2022, the T-Roc was the best-selling SUV in Europe. The improved next-gen VW T-Roc (with the PHEV system) could go on sale next year.
With the current model already five-years old, it seems like VW is saving up electrification and advanced features for the second generation T-Roc in 2024. The company has confirmed plug-in hybrid tech for the compact SUV, after all.
2023 VW T-Roc FAQs
What is the 2023 VW T-Roc release date?
The 2023 VW T-Roc should go on sale soon. An all-new T-Roc with a PHEV system is expected in 2024.
Which SUVs will be 2023 VW T-Roc competitors?
What is the new VW T-Roc price?
The base VW T-Roc facelift is priced at EUR 25,800 (USD 28,034).
Featured Image Source: Volkswagen Group