All-new Volkswagen T-Roc Cabriolet goes on sale

  • Soft-top SUV will be Volkswagen’s only convertible
  • Two versions initially; high-performance R could follow
  • Available to order now from £26,750

Finally filling the soft-top gap in its model range that’s been present since the Beetle Cabriolet went off sale in 2018 is the new Volkswagen T-Roc Cabriolet – the German company’s first convertible SUV has gone on sale.

If you’re not a fan of SUVs, then make sure you’re sat down: the soft-top T-Roc is effectively the replacement for the Golf Cabriolet and continues VW’s convertible tradition that’s lasted over seven decades.

What’s different about the T-Roc Cabriolet?

Whereas the existing hard-top T-Roc is a more conventional five-door, five-seater SUV, other than its raised ride height the Cabriolet version follows the soft-top textbook to the letter.

White 2020 Volkswagen T-Roc Cabriolet side elevation roof down

That means it has a snug fabric roof that operates electrically – it lowers in nine seconds and is erected again in eleven – enveloping a cosy four-seater interior. Convertibles tend to not to be able to accommodate three passengers in the back due to the way the roof mechanism encroaches into the rear seat area.

Other classic traits include a small bootlid that allows access to a useful 284-litre luggage space, albeit through a narrow gap and two-door bodywork to enable the T-Roc to retain more of its structural integrity. The wheelbase – the distance between the front and rear wheels – has been extended on the Cabriolet by 40mm for the express purpose of giving rear seat passengers more room.

Which versions of the T-Roc Cabriolet are available?

From its launch, two turbocharged petrol engines will be offered in the T-Roc Cabriolet: a 115hp 1.0-litre TSI and a 150hp 1.5-litre TSI. Both have six-speed manual transmissions, but the latter is also available with Volkswagen’s optional seven-speed DSG twin-clutch automatic gearbox.

Those motors can be paired with a choice of Design and sportier R-Line specifications.

Design versions feature 17-inch Mayfield alloy wheels, an 8.0-inch multimedia touchscreen with integral satnav and a six-speaker sound system, dual-zone climate control and a suite of safety systems such as adaptive cruise control, autonomous emergency braking and lane-keeping assist to prevent you from drifting beyond the white lines. Design prices start at £26,750.

White 2020 Volkswagen T-Roc Cabriolet interior

Plump for the more aggressive R-Line and you’ll enjoy 19-inch Suzuka alloys, a purposeful bodykit, LED headlamps and a ride-height that’s lowered by 20mm (and closer to what a Golf Cabriolet would have been, anyway…). Those themes continue inside where the sports seats and steering wheel are complemented by VW’s Active Info Display – electronic instruments in plain English. If you fancy an R-Design, prepare to dig deeper – they cost from £31,920.

Two colours are exclusive to the Cabriolet, too: Ivy Green and Smokey Grey metallic.

Will there be a high-performance T-Roc R Cabriolet?

Nothing’s confirmed at this stage, but given the continuing growth of SUVs as a genre, and VW’s recent launch of a hard-top 300hp T-Roc R SUV, it would be a logical step to produce a Cabriolet version if sales were predicted to be sufficiently profitable.

Less exciting, but more likely to get the green light for sales are diesel-engined and plug-in hybrid (PHEV) versions of the T-Roc Cabriolet.

White 2020 Volkswagen T-Roc Cabriolet side elevation roof up

What this means for you

If you’re after a compact, fun to drive convertible to take advantage of the summer weather – all three days of it – then the T-Roc Cabriolet should be on your shortlist, even if you’re not immediately sold on the idea of it being an SUV. Think of it more of a taller-than-usual soft-top rather than a go-anywhere vehicle without a roof.

Right now, it has no direct rivals – the Range Rover Evoque Convertible went off sale in 2019, leaving the soon-to-be discontinued Audi A3 Cabriolet and BMW 2 Series Convertible as its nearest competitors.

And in truth, you’re unlikely to be considering the T-Roc Cabriolet if you had planned on buying the regular solid-roof SUV version anyway.

It’s thin-pickings for soft-top fans right now, so don’t dismiss the T-Roc without trying it first. In Design trim it doesn’t look too bad value, either.

Further reading:

>> Find out more about the VW T-Roc Cabriolet with our extensive preview

>> Still fancy the solid-roofed T-Roc? Indulge in our expert VW SUV review

>> Hankering after a Golf Cabriolet? Catch-up with its in-depth review

White 2020 Volkswagen T-Roc Cabriolet rear three-quarter roof up