Volkswagen up! review - Reliability and Safety
Volkswagen has a solid reputation for reliability and the Up has a good Euro NCAP score
There have been no major safety upgrades to the up!, so its five-star Euro NCAP crash test score from 2011 still stands. All versions get four airbags and stability control, while an autonomous emergency braking system is a £375 option.
The up! scored 89 per cent for adult occupant safety, and 86 per cent in the safety assist category. It's a disappointment that Volkswagen doesn't give the entry-level Take up! models ESP stability control as standard, but all versions come with driver and passenger airbags in addition to Isofix child seat attachments, anti-lock brakes and seat belt reminders.
The up!'s optional City Emergency Braking system (which comes as part of a pack that costs £410) uses a laser to scan the road ahead and automatically applies the brakes if it senses an imminent collision.
The Volkswagen up! didn’t feature in our 2019 Driver Power survey, but Volkswagen itself finished mid-table in 17th place out of 30 manufacturers. The brand scored best for quality, with a third-place finish in that category. 20.2% of owners reported experiencing a fault with their car. The up! has scored well for reliability in the past, however.
Volkswagen offers an industry standard three-year/60,000-mile warranty with the up!. It’s easy enough to find rival city cars with longer periods of cover if you want them – the Hyundai i10 and the Toyota Aygo both come with five-year/unlimited-mileage warranties and the Kia offers seven years and 100,000 miles of cover with the Picanto. The Skoda Citigo matches the up!'s warranty, although Skoda offers three years' breakdown cover, compared to one year on the VW.
Individual servicing costs for brand new versions of the up! will depend on the dealer but it’s such a small, low cost car that it’s unlikely to burn much of a hole in your pocket. For slightly older models, Volkswagen offers a fixed price service plan for cars between three and 15 years old with engines up to 2.0 litres (that comfortably covers the up!). A minor service costs £149, a major service costs £299 and there are also bundles that include MoTs, air conditioning recharges and other routine bits of maintenance.
In this review
- 1Volkswagen up! reviewThe Volkswagen up! is a sensible city car that has practicality, style and fun driving up its sleeve
- 2Engines, performance and driveThe engine options are limited, but that's not too much of a bad thing
- 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 spaceIt's small, but the Up is spacious for a city car
- 6Reliability and Safety - currently readingVolkswagen has a solid reputation for reliability and the Up has a good Euro NCAP score