Green and Bear It : VW Scirocco 2.0 TSI DSG

Car Specifications
Engine: 
1984cc, 16-valves, turbocharged
Cylinder Layout: 
in-line 4
Top Speed: 
233km/h
Transmission: 
6-speed DSG
0-100km/h: 
7.1 seconds
Power: 
200bhp at 5100-6000rpm
Torque: 
280Nm at 1700-5000rpm
Features: 
  • Styling is a Plus, but then there's always the 1.4L twincharged version

Green seems to be the theme for the past few posts. Thankfully for a change, in the case of the VW Scirocco, it's only 'green' in terms of its luminous Viper Green hue, as opposed to being yet another car for the tree-hugging brigade - not that there's anything wrong with 'going green' of course, lest thin-skinned readers start taking things the wrong way.

The 3rd generation 'rocco is a sexy beast, with the new Golf's slit eyed gaze and a curvaceous rump-end that promises much to the wildly imaginative. The edgy 2+2 comes from a long line of 'sporthatch-coupes' that began with the first and second generation Scirocco, which later evolved into the Corrado.

As much as the new model is visibly a hatchback, opinion was polarised over the true characters of the earlier cars, which boasted distinctive 'hatchback-coupe' silhouettes, especially during the era of the Corrado.

Shod in the turbine-shaped 18-inch alloys (finished in sterling silver, no less, for that added 'bling' factor), the 'rocco cuts a sexy, no-nonsense stance, also well-accentuated by its muscular rear haunches, which certainly gives it a strong presence on the roads.

Unlike the Porsche 911 GT3 RS Viper Green, the 'rocco's shade is near fluorescent and shows up hints of yellow, green and gold, depending on the viewing angle. Of course, an added complication now is colour matching by lesser paint-shops in the event of minor scrapes, since this is a colour that will require skill to mix and apply for it to blend perfectly.

Despite its seemingly compact proportions, the car will happily carry 4 adults with ease; the boot will accommodate shopping packages and grocery bags as well - although it is deep, the loading point is rather high due to the tail-gate design.

Inside the cabin, the seats are supportive for fast road use and the 'flat-bottomed' sports steering wheel is ribbed for the enthusiast's driving pleasure. Like the Golf GTI, the 'rocco is served by VW's 6-speed DSG transmission (with accompanying steering wheel mounted shift-paddles).

A similar turbocharged 2L powerplant powers the Scirocco and is mated to the quick-shifting DSG for explosive effect. There's no doubt that these cars (Golf GTI and 'Rocco 2.0 TSI) are effortless to drive quickly under normal traffic conditions. Prod the gas pedal and the car rockets away off the line with a slight chirrup from the 18-inch Pirelli PZero Rosso rubbers.

In fact, with the DSG's close-ratios under brisk acceleration, 100km/h seems to come up very quickly on the white-illuminated instruments (much quicker than the 7.1 seconds might otherwise suggest). Like the GTI, the Scirocco proves to be a tough customer when it comes to driving at a more relaxed pace.

On the move, the forced-induced punch hits hard in the low to mid-range with scarcely any turbo-lag to speak of. Despite the road noise at highway speeds, the 'rocco presents itself as a decent daily driver (as an alternative to the ubiquitous Golf GTI, although the Mk 6 GTI now gives +10bhp) for motorists who appreciate the prodigious thrust of a turbocharged engine yet want the refinement (and perceived prestige?) of an edgy continental marque.

There are 3 suspension modes to pick from: Sport, Comfort and erm, Normal. In Sport, the ride was never unbearable so we left it in that mode for most of our time with the car. The steering is meaty, yet communicative and the brakes forceful and easy to modulate.

Unlike the Golf VI GTI, the 'rocco doesn't have a LSD to really help a front-driver cope with the corners, but even then, grip levels are decent but you need to let the front end dig in before attempting to pile on the power; prodding the gas pedal any earlier is just wasted effort - thankfully the 'rocco punches hard down the straights.

p.s. If the Scirocco 2.0TSI isn't 'hard' enough for you, the fire-breathing 265bhp R variant is expected to arrive in Q1 2010. Now that Loco 'Rocco (on a side note, check out: http://www.locoroco.com/pc/index.php) should prove to be a real live wire.

Summary
Priced just under S$130k (1.4L comes in at approx. $97k), the Scirocco isn't a cheap proposition, but then again, it's sometimes difficult to put a price on 'coolness' and all in all, at least the 'Rocco presents a refreshing change from the many variants of the Golf and kawaii MINI, even though the latter car is still an appealing proposition to many buyers. - dk
Photos: 
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