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Geneva show: VW goes troppo with Scirocco

Familar: New Scirocco revives a VW name first seen in the mid-1970s.

Volkswagen wows Geneva with its production Scirocco coupe and a hybrid-diesel Golf

7 Mar 2008

VOLKSWAGEN has unveiled the production version of its new Scirocco coupe at the Geneva motor show, along with a hybrid-diesel Golf concept car.

While maintaining the same basic shape as the original concept that was revealed at the Paris motor show in 2006, the styling of the Scirocco production car is not as overtly aggressive.

The Scirocco coupe is based on the Golf platform and will be positioned as an affordable premium sportscar with prices in Germany starting at the equivalent of $35,500 when it goes on sale there mid-year.

Volkswagen Australia is expected to bring the Scirocco here, although no final decision has been made.

Don’t hold your breath though, with VW Australia warning we may have to wait until late next year or even 2010 for the new coupe.

At least there is a good chance the Scirocco is likely to come to Australia, with VW already stating the car will not be exported to the US.

3 center imageThe engine line-up for the Scirocco is yet to be released, but it is expected petrol, turbo petrol and diesel units will be offered. The 1.4 petrol engine that uses both a turbo and supercharger, and is currently used in the Golf GT, is also expected to power the Scirocco.

Dr Martin Winterkorn said the Scirocco is good news for lovers of sports cars.

“What we have done with the Scirocco is to put the kind of sports car in our showrooms that people have dreamed of owning,” he said.

“A dream that a good deal of motorists, in spite of all the high-end engineering we have integrated, can actually afford.” The Scirocco is quite shapely by Vokswagen standards, with bulging rear arches and low and wide stance.

Unfortunately, the muscular large grille that dominated the front-end of the Iroc concept car has been banished for the production model. The Scirocco now runs a more traditional grille separated by a thin body-coloured bumper.

The original Scirocco coupe was sold in Europe from the mid-1970s until early 1990s. It was never officially sold in Australia, though a handful of right-hand-drive versions were imported privately.

The Golf TDI Hybrid concept car on the VW stand in Geneva could be easily missed as it looks just like any other silver Golf hatch.

The big difference is that this concept runs a powertrain that allows it to record a combined fuel consumption figure of just 3.4L/100km.

It uses a 1.2-litre turbo-diesel engine linked to a seven-speed DSG dual clutch automatic.

The hybrid can run in electric-only mode at low speeds or alternatively on diesel power only. Under acceleration it can use both power sources, both of which shut down when the car comes to a halt.

Minor exterior changes include a slightly lower ride height, a unique grille and smaller air-intakes - all designed to improve aerodynamic efficiency over the standard production car.

The Golf TDI Hybrid is clearly a concept car at this stage, but the very fact that Volkswagen presented it indicates the German giant is considering following the Peugeot-Citroen group, which is well advanced with a diesel-electric hybrid drive program.

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