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VW Scirocco R Line

The VW Scirocco R Line adds a dash more panache, but it’s all for show with no added go

Overall Auto Express Rating

4.0 out of 5

The Volkswagen Scirocco R Line is a brilliant all-rounder in terms of looks, efficiency and performance. It won’t be worth the extra £1,525 outlay for most buyers, but it makes sense if you’re looking for a more desirable package with a sportier appearance and handling edge over the Scirocco GT. The fact that this version is an official model line will help with residual values, too.

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There’s some stiff competition in the sporty coupe market these days, with the Audi TT and BMW 2 Series offering all the thrills and style drivers could want. The long-in-the-tooth Volkswagen Scirocco is still up for the scrap though, and offers good value, decent performance and looks though. Especially if you specify the R Line version.

The Scirocco R Line is based on Scirocco GT spec, but it’s roughly a grand more expensive with a ‘like for like’ engine choice, so you’ll need to be quite committed to the car’s extra visual impact. What you get is a set of bigger and more boldacious 19-inch alloy wheels, and a racy looking body kit with a bespoke radiator grille, new front and rear bumpers, and side skirts. That’s on the outside, while inside there’s a pair of heated R-Line leather sports seats and a sporty perforated leather-trimmed steering wheel. The seats feature an embossed R highlight, and they’re deeper, more supportive and more comfortable than the standard items.

There’s a set of shiny chrome-look pedals underfoot, while the standard equipment carried over from the GT includes Adaptive Chassis Control, a touchscreen sat-nav system and DAB radio.

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The sporty Scirocco spec sheet also includes front fog lamps, dual-zone climate control and rear tinted windows, and the build quality and fit-and-finish are as exemplary as we’ve come to expect.

You can choose the R Line package with a range of engines, but we tested it with a 138bhp 2.0 TDI under the bonnet, which has since been upgraded with an extra 10bhp. It’s the most efficient Scirocco you can buy, with a smooth power delivery and one of the best-sounding four-cylinder diesel notes out there. It’s not the fastest Scirocco for sale – 0-62mph takes a lengthy 9.2 seconds – but it idles with decent refinement and has plenty of torque for motorway work.

The larger wheels mean that while the ride is firmer than on the GT – which has 18-inch alloys – it’s still excellent at ironing out bumps. The Adaptive Chassis Control has default, Comfort and Sport modes, and there’s a noticeable benefit in selecting Comfort around town. If you accelerate hard, however, the nose lifts as you move off; Sport mode makes the Scirocco feel much more balanced.When you boil it all down, though, the R Line is merely a more stylish Scirocco that costs a fair chunk of cash more than the GT. It looks the part, but not all buyers will be drawn in by the extra glamour.

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