Parkers overall rating: 4.5 out of 5 4.5

With a wide range of turbocharged petrol and diesel engines, Volkswagen Scirocco performance impresses regardless of which motor is under the bonnet.

A slick-six speed gearbox is standard while there’s the option of an excellent semi-automatic system called DSG, with six ratios – or or seven on the 1.4 TSI.

Petrol engines from launch

The two petrol engines are both TSI units starting with the excellent 1.4-litre which uses both a turbocharger and supercharger to produce an impressive 158bhp.

Considering its small size this engine is a real gem and offers great performance, sprinting from 0-62mph in just 8.0 seconds while averaging 44mpg.

An entry-level 1.4-litre TSI with 120bhp was also available, introduced in early 2010 which covers the 0-62mph sprint in 9.7 seconds and returns 44mpg.

However, for extra performance look to the 2.0-litre TSI. This is the same engine that’s used in the 2005 Golf GTI and with 197bhp it provides strong pace with a 0-62mph time of 7.2 seconds.

In October 2009 this engine was replaced by a newer 2.0-litre TSI engine that’s borrowed from the 2009 Golf GTI. This has 207bhp and is even more impressive than the previous engine. It also brings the 0-62mph time down to 6.9 seconds yet economy is a useful 38mpg.

All the TSI units deliver a lovely engine note while there’s a sporty rasp from the twin exhaust pipes, adding to the enjoyable driving experience.

Diesel engines from launch

The 2.0 TDI is the latest common-rail unit and so far smoother and quieter than previous Volkswagen diesels. It’s available with either 138bhp or 168bhp (in GT trim) and both offer plenty of pulling power as you’d expect. 0-62mph takes 9.3 seconds in the 138bhp while economy is an impressive 55mpg.

The more powerful manages the same 0-62mph sprint in 8.1 seconds and has large reserves of grunt, making overtaking simple.

New engines added

Summer 2014 saw the engine line-up further revised in conjunction with the Scirocco’s exterior facelift.

The entry-level 1.4-litre had its power upped to 123bhp, while the more powerful version was replaced by a detuned 2.0-litre with 178bhp. The existing 207bhp motor was further upgraded, this time to 217bhp.

Both diesels also enjoyed a power increase, now producing 148bhp and 181bhp.

As it’s based on the Golf it’s no surprise that Volkswagen Scirocco handling is a strong point. Thanks to minimal overhangs and a low centre of gravity there’s barely any body roll in bends while traction is excellent. All the controls such as the clutch and gearbox work with real precision making the Scirocco an incredibly enjoyable and rewarding car to drive.

Precise steering with strong feedback plus almost endless levels of grip make the coupe better to drive and even more agile than the superb Golf GTI.