Volkswagen Scirocco GTS review

8 Aug, 2013 9:30am Luke Madden

Special edition helps keep sporty Volkswagen coupe in the spotlight


The GTS is a good way to make your Scirocco stand out, but it’s also very expensive. The car still feels impressive after five years on sale, too, even though the ride is a bit on the firm side. Yet the more practical new Golf GTI three-door costs about the same once you’ve added a few extras. We’ve no problem recommending the Scirocco – just not one this expensive.

The Volkswagen Scirocco GTS special edition is VW's tactic to ensure the Scirocco wasn't forgotten after the launch of the Golf GTI.

The Scirocco is based on the old Golf’s platform, so it’s at a disadvantage, but it does have looks on its side. Although the styling is unchanged since 2008, this is still one of VW’s smartest designs, and the GTS’s unique 18-inch Thunder alloys, racing stripes, bodykit and GTS badges add a bit of love-it-or-hate-it style.

Volkswagen Scirocco review

We tested a car fitted with the 207bhp 2.0-litre TSI engine, but you can also have the GTS with a 175bhp 2.0-litre TDI diesel. Both engines are the same as in the standard Scirocco, but not much needed changing. Not only does the 2.0 TSI produce a deep growl from its exhausts, but it’s also flexible enough to pull well from low revs and accelerate hard all the way to the red line.

A 0-62mph time of 6.9 seconds is impressive and not too far away from the 6.5 seconds achieved by the new Golf GTI MkVII. It’s surprising how close the Scirocco gets to the new GTI in bends, too. We expected it to feel outdated, but it still feels really responsive, grippy and agile.

In terms of comfort, though, the Scirocco struggles. The ride is nowhere near as willing to soak up big bumps as the latest Golf GTI’s – and that’s even with the standard Adaptive Chassis Control system set to Comfort.

The interior still feels relatively up to date, and the GTS adds special floor mats, a few extra pieces of gloss black trim and some GTS-badged leather seats. It all feels suitably upmarket, but while there is sat-nav, it feels old-hat compared with the latest touchscreen system that VW offers in the new Golf.

Prices for the GTS start from £28,540 for a manual model – although our DSG car costs £465 more than the R-Line model on which it’s based, at £29,940.

Considering you’re only getting a few visual updates for your cash, it doesn’t seem like great value. In fact, when you can have a brand new three-door Golf GTI for less, you may not even want a Scirocco at all.

Key specs

  • Price: £29,940
  • Engine: 2.0-litre 4cyl turbo
  • Power: 207bhp
  • Transmission: Six-speed DSG automatic, front-wheel drive
  • 0-62mph: 6.9 seconds
  • Top speed: 148mph
  • Econ/CO2: 37.7mpg/174g/km
  • Equipment: Leather upholstery, sat-nav, air-con, electric windows
  • On sale : Now