Volkswagen up! review - Practicality, comfort and boot space
It may be compact, but the Volkswagen up! is spacious for a city car
The up! is available as a three or a five-door hatchback with four seats and the compact but spacious layout means it’s perfect for short journeys and young families. The up! isn’t as big inside as the Polo supermini, but the versatile interior should prove practical enough. The comfortable, upright driving position and good all-round visibility make it very easy to drive. There are plenty of cubbyholes, too.
Don't be fooled by the up!'s big-car feel, it is still very compact, with a length of 3,540mm, width of 1,645mm and height of 1,489mm. It is the same size as the Fiat 500, but thanks to its 2,420mm wheelbase, the up! is much more spacious than its Italian rival. For context, the up! is nearly 500mm shorter than the Hyundai i10, Kia Picanto and Ford Fiesta, yet it still manages to offer similar boot space to the Kia and Hyundai.
Leg room, head room & passenger space
The inner roof is shaped to accommodate taller rear passengers. It means that while the up! isn’t exactly a family-sized car, there is quite a bit more space than you’d expect from a car of this size for those in the back seats – and the same goes for legroom. It’s only a four-seater though, so you may want to look elsewhere if you need the extra central seat in the back.
The up! has a 251-litre boot and space remains the same for both the three-door and five-door models, though the latter has better access to the rear seats. To achieve this figure you need the false floor in its lowest setting, which creates a high loading lip. All cars bar the entry-level model get split-folding rear seats, which creates a 959-litre load area, and with the floor panel raised the load area is completely flat.
The boot is bigger than the majority of rival city cars can offer, but the Volkswagen is beaten by the Hyundai i10, which has a 252-litre boot that expands to 1,046 litres when the rear seats are folded flat.
In this review
- 1Volkswagen up! reviewThe VW up! has been at the top of the city car class for a decade, and it’s still going strong
- 2Engines, performance and driveThe limited choice of engines takes nothing away from the entertainment on offer
- 3MPG, CO2 and Running CostsThe Volkswagen Up is a small car with a small engine, which means low running costs
- 4Interior, design and technologyThe Volkswagen up! is surprisingly sophisticated for a such a small car
- 5Practicality, comfort and boot space - currently readingIt may be compact, but the Volkswagen up! is spacious for a city car
- 6Reliability and SafetyVolkswagen has a solid reputation for reliability, although the up! could improve on its Euro NCAP safety score