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VW Scirocco R lands with more for less

Hatching now: Volkswagen’s three-door Scirocco R has returned with updated styling to the exterior and cabin, plus more standard features such as a reversing camera.

No doubt about it, the refreshed Volkswagen Scirocco R is priced to please

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Volkswagen logo14 Jan 2015

VOLKSWAGEN’S Scirocco R hot hatch has fended off potential extinction in Australia and been re-launched with new styling and extra equipment for $2000 less than the outgoing model.

The coupe’s pricing now starts at $45,990 (plus on-road costs) for the six-speed manual version – down from $47,990 – while the seven-speed DSG double-clutch automatic transmission variant is $48,490, down from $50,490.

Volkswagen Group Australia (VGA) agonised over whether to continue with the feisty niche sports coupe that accounted for just 183 sales last year – down 59 per cent on 2013’s tally.

But after positive feedback from fans, dealers and the media who spotted the revised model after its release at last year’s Geneva motor show, the company decided to press on with the enhanced version.

The 2015 model retains the 188kW/330Nm 2.0-litre turbo four-cylinder engine but with an increase in low-down torque.

A refreshed exterior gets a redesigned front bumper, new bi-Xenon headlights, LED running lights and high intensity tail-lights.

The refined cabin receives a new-look instrument cluster gains a chronometer and charge pressure and oil temperature gauges reminiscent of the auxiliary dials found on the 1974 Scirocco’s centre console.

A reversing camera and parking sensors at front and rear join a long list of standard features that include 19-inch Cadiz alloy wheels with black R logo brake callipers, R-specific sports seats, 6.5-inch touchscreen and media system with navigation and flat-bottomed steering wheel.

In a move that should improve dynamics, Volkswagen has included an enhanced electronic locking differential, dubbed XDL, that uses hydraulic force to brake an inside wheel if it begins to spin and divert power to the outside wheel to minimise understeer.

It also has added adaptive chassis control with Comfort, Normal and Sport settings.

Volkswagen Australia public relations manager Kurt McGuiness said the German car-maker was pleased to be able to offer the vehicle with more features for less money.

“The Scirocco R is a hero model in our performance range and certainly one of our most exciting cars,” he said.

“We’re thrilled to offer the updated Scirocco R to our customers with enhanced features and an even more affordable entry price.”

The Scirocco R was launched in Australia in 2012, but speaking to GoAuto last year, VGA managing director John White said the company was uncertain about bringing in the updated model, but the positive reaction to the car convinced him to bring it back.

“At the launch of the Golf GTI (in September 2013) we indicated two cars were exiting the market, one being the Up the other being the Eos and we were considering what to do with Scirocco,” he said.

“Right about that time the car was shown at the Geneva auto show and after the feedback from the press, from the dealers and also from social media we made a decision that we’re going to keep the Scirocco R and introduce the new model.”

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