2014 Volkswagen Scirocco R | Road Test

Posted on Jul 21, 2014 by
2014 Volkswagen Scirocco R
  • Editor Rating

  • Rated 4.5 stars
  • Outstanding
AEDAED 164,000
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  • Exterior
    Editor: 90%
  • Interior
    Editor: 90%
  • Quality
    Editor: 90%
  • Features
    Editor: 80%
  • Performance
    Editor: 85%
  • Value for money
    Editor: 90%

Review Summary:

It's not your average hot hatch; in fact there's nothing quite ordinary about it at all. From its voluptuous exterior, to the way it drives, the 2014 Scirocco R is a class apart.

Pros

* Exterior styling that turns heads although it's been in the market for 6 years now.
* The drive offered by the Scirocco is best experienced, and not described.

Cons

* The Scirocco R is among the thirstier of the lot.
* Entering and exiting from the rear seats could very well be considered an acrobatic show.

Introduction & Summary

Named after a Mediterranean wind, the Volkswagen Scirocco is not a new nameplate to the brand as thought by many, but instead, one that has been a part of the line-up since the early 1970’s. Dimensionally smaller than its more successful sibling, – the Golf – the Scirocco brings some German flair to an otherwise rather dull segment of the market.

2014 Volkswagen Scirocco R front

As you’ve probably already gathered from the title, this review isn’t about the standard Scirocco, but instead, its gym-going sibling whose drinks are limited to different flavours of protein shakes, and who happens to be a strong believer in brawn over brains. In addition to cosmetic differences between the two, performance upgrades and mechanical alterations seep into the equation to differentiate the bipolar siblings even further.

Styling & Design

The Volkswagen Scirocco is one of those cars that had it been able to speak, would belt out American duo LMFAO’s “Sexy and I Know It” at the top of its voice, wherever it went. While a gloss black grille and large slats in the lower half of the bumper come together to create the Scirocco R’s aggressive mien, its broad rear end could most definitely earn it the title “Kim Kardashian of the Automotive World.”

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Along the length of the German , its prominent shoulder lines, ascending window lines and large 19 inch Talladega alloys, give it a certain personality and finesse that isn’t easy to come by in its segment. Making its sporting pretensions clearer, the 2014 Volkswagen Scirocco R also welcomes a rear spoiler, a gloss black diffuser, twin chrome exhaust outlets, and a miniscule R badge on its boot decklid; just to let others know you’re probably not the one they want to challenge at the lights.

Features

Inside, the Scirocco R is home to black Vienna leather with grey stitching around the well bolstered sports seats, and a combination of piano black trim and silver inserts along the dashboard and door panels. While the driver benefits from a power adjustable seat, the individual riding shotgun has to make do with a rotary knob for tilt, and a pump action lever for height adjustments.

2014 Volkswagen Scirocco R interior

Overhead, the tilting panoramic roof allows for passengers to enjoy breathtaking vistas of the star studded night sky, however, packing in its fair share of quirks, it isn’t all A-OK with the 2014 Volkswagen Scirocco R. A laggy infotainment system not only depreciates the experience inside the cabin, but the lack of a reverse camera is something that comes as quite a surprise. To make highway trips easier, there’s also a cruise control system fitted into the seductive hatch, but just be careful while activating it, since for some strange reason, the designers’ thought integrating it into the indicator stalk made a ton of sense. Instead, what ends up happening is the unintentional blinking of your indicators when all you wanted to do was switch the silly thing on!

Performance, Ride & Handling

Powered by a turbo four-cylinder TSI unit which works as the base platform for race cars in the Scirocco R-Cup, the 2.0 litre engine propels the German hatch from 0 – 100 km/h in 5.8 seconds and packs a top whack of 250 km/h. Mated to a six speed dual clutch transmission, the 2014 Volkswagen Scirocco R is also equipped with an XDS transverse differential lock on its front axle, to improve traction and prevent it from losing its 255 horsepower and hefty 350 Nm of torque to the dreaded wheelspin at the beginning of any run.

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Fitted with tire sensors which monitor where the wheel is and how fast it is moving, subframe sensors that monitor movements, and sensors that feed data to the chassis every millisecond, the Adaptive Chassis Control (DCC) system ensures each shock absorber reacts accordingly to whether Sport, Normal, or Comfort damping modes have been selected. With the simple tap of a button, it’s quite astonishing to see how the 1,344 kg Scirocco R transforms from a comfortable highway cruiser, to a nimble corner carving hatchback, almost instantaneously.

Popping the gear lever into manual mode, the Scirocco R also allows driver’s to take greater pleasure in the progression through the six speed transmission, as it holds onto gears significantly longer before ending the whistle from the turbocharger upfront and gifting those inside the vehicle and out, with aural symphonies that come in the form of snarly exhaust pops.

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Once in the driver’s seat with 17 inch brakes at your disposal, oodles of power under your right foot, and a turbocharger whining up front, there’s something about the 2014 Volkswagen Scirocco R that just gets you. It brings a smile to your face and the hidden Mohammed Bin Sulayem out of you, as you wrestle with the steering wheel to keep it straight and not let the immense amounts of torque take over in the battle against torque steer. Simply said, it’s a fun car to drive, a ton of fun!

Comfort & Practicality

Judging by its size, it’s evident that the Scirocco isn’t the most spacious of vehicles out there. To hop into the rear seats, you can expect to hear creaks, cracks and complaints of cramps, but once in there, it’s a rather snug fit with two individual seats that will accommodate two, and strictly, only two passengers. Practicality wise, the Scirocco R does well for itself, as the 292 litre boot space is able to gobble up an entire suitcase. Yes, I was crazy enough to take it to the airport, but you really can’t blame me for never wanting to leave the driver’s seat.

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Fuel economy on the other hand, isn’t the Scirocco’s strongest point and quite frankly, if you read this far in search of fuel economy read outs, you’re reading the wrong review. Because the Scirocco R is a performance hungry hatchback that is like that annoying friend who asks for a taste of your drink and takes the biggest sip possible every single time. Each time the turbo spools and the exhaust pops as a reflex of your stretched right foot, there’s a noticeable drop in the fuel gauge, but in all honesty, it’s a small price to pay for the joy it brings you. And oh, in case you’re still wondering, it’s around 11 litres for every 100 kilometres.

Price & Verdict

The 2014 Volkswagen Scirocco R is obnoxious and will make you look like a hooligan, it may even need you to reduce your friend circle, and it most definitely will take you the pumps a lot more often than you need to. But if you thought I wasn’t a fan of the German hatchback that oozes with sex appeal, then you’d be far, far from the truth.

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In actuality, the Scirocco R delivers an intoxicating experience, one that will bring a smile to your face and one that could very well cure depression too. So take a loan if you need to, fire that shrink if you need to as well, because for AED 164,000 the Scirocco R will make you feel like you’ve never felt before. It will make you feel alive.

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