Volkswagen Scirocco Review

Gumtree Rating

4.0 rating

The first Scirocco landed in 1973 before being replaced in 1981 by the Mk2 that ran until 1992 – they were sleek, racy coupes that would garner many admiring glances across those decades. Then it was no more. Until that is, Volkswagen reintroduced its much more curvaceous, modern successor in 2008 which, like its predecessors, ran for around ten years until 2017. This review will focus on this most recent model, which is a great-value small coupe, but if you’re looking for a classic car, earlier versions are well worth a look too.

Check out our review or go to the Scirocco model page to learn more.

What we think about the Volkswagen Scirocco

The Scirocco looks good and drives well, and there are plenty of bargains to be had.

Pros

+

Stylish looks

+

Handles well

+

Impressive petrol engines

Cons

Not hugely practical

Firm ride

The Volkswagen Scirocco was available in seven trim levels: Scirocco, GT, GT Black edition, R-Line, R-Line Black Edition and (latterly) GTS and R. There were a couple of petrol engines (1.4 and 2.0-litre) with various power outputs and diesel options too.

Driving performance of the Volkswagen Scirocco

Our Driving Rating8 / 10

The Scirocco sits quite low on the road, so feels surefooted through corners. This is helped by a fairly tight suspension which is firm but not uncomfortable. The engines on offer are all solid performers, but the 2.0 TSI, borrowed from the Golf GTI, is the peppiest pick – the diesels have some grunt but are more tourer than sports car. Manual and automatic transmissions also accompany the range of engines, and the driving position is comfortable.

Safety and reliability of the Volkswagen Scirocco

Our Safety Rating7 / 10

Euro NCAP gave the Scirocco a five-star safety rating in 2009, so that’s reassuring. It has to be said, though, that it lacks the safety technology of more modern cars, despite running until 2017. Reliability-wise, this is a Volkswagen and also based on tried-and-tested Golf parts, so it shouldn’t give you much trouble. As it’s a sporty coupe, just stay on the look out for any signs of it being driven too hard by previous owners, such as scuffs and scrapes or engine rattles.

Under the bonnet of the Volkswagen Scirocco

Our Engine Rating9 / 10

An important thing to note about the Scirocco is that there was a lot of variation in engine outputs. This was dependent on both the options chosen and year of release. Generally speaking, the later the model the higher the horse-power, with the highest after 2014, but a test-drive is recommended to feel it for yourself. Petrol engines are either 1.4 or 2.0 TSI units – the smaller engine could feel a little lacking in pace (0-60 mph in 9.7 seconds), so many will prefer the 2.0-litre. The 2.0 diesels were no slouches though, with the higher-output versions accelerating to 60 mph in about 7.5 seconds.

What you'll find in the Volkswagen Scirocco

Our Design Rating8 / 10

The Scirocco looks great and can still hold its own today – no mean feat considering it first appeared in 2009. It had a facelift in 2014 that offered some subtle improvements, but if that’s out of your budget, earlier models are still very desirable. The R version’s meatier appearance (with enhanced bumpers and unique 18-inch alloys) screams sporty without being overpowering. If the extra cost and fuel bills aren’t for you then there’s also an R-Line model, which offers much of the get-up with less of the go.

Comfort and interiors in the Volkswagen Scirocco

Our Comfort Rating7 / 10

You’re probably not buying a Scirocco for practical reasons, and an accommodating family car it is not – getting a car seat in and out of the back very often won’t be fun. That said, it might surprise you. There’s a fairly sizeable boot, some useful space in the cabin and legroom (if not headroom) in the back is fine – but like most coupes, it can only seat four. The interior is stylish, with a feel of solidity and good quality too.

Volkswagen Scirocco dashboard

What features you'll find in the Volkswagen Scirocco

Our Features Rating7 / 10

Volkswagen improved things over the life of the Scirocco, and it was pretty well-specced when it launched. The infotainment system offered Bluetooth and a (small) touchscreen as standard – it doesn’t stack up with today’s systems but it’ll serve its purpose just fine. All models also had an electronic stability programme (ESP) to help maintain control. Continuing the safety theme of the tech, there’s an automatic application of the hazard lights when you undertake any heavy braking.

What fuel efficiency to expect from the Volkswagen Scirocco

Our Fuel Consumption Rating8 / 10

All of the engines deliver entirely manageable fuel efficiency, particularly considering this is a sports coupe. Unsurprisingly, the diesels offer the best fuel economy, with the lowest-powered unit capable of up to 63 mpg. The 1.4 petrol engine boasted mpg figures in the mid 40s, and the 125 bhp version maxed out at an impressive 52 mpg. Of course, the quicker 2.0-litre TSI was the least efficient (35-38 mpg, dependent on model), excepting the lowest-powered motor, which could reach 46 mpg.

Running costs of the Volkswagen Scirocco

Our Cost Rating7 / 10

Running a Scirocco needn’t be as expensive as it may seem with reasonable fuel economy and a 20,000-mile service schedule. A lot could depend on engine choices here. Servicing costs could be a lot higher when they come thanks to that prestigious VW badge, though you should benefit from the brand’s reliability in terms of the amount of servicing required. Insurance isn’t cheap either, starting at group 18 and going as high as 39 for the R, so these aren’t cars for first-time drivers.

Our verdict of the Volkswagen Scirocco

4.0 rating

4 / 5 Gumtree rating

The Volkswagen Scirocco is a stylish, reliable coupe with plenty of engine options and a lifespan that means it suits a range of budgets.