Finally unveiled after a million little teasers, the VW T-ROC is here... but we're feeling a little apathetic.
The Golf-based mini SUV - the much anticipated VW T-ROC - is the rock star of this chilly Thursday morning in Southern Africa, but we can't help but feel a little apathetic about it. Tickets were expensive and the performance by the rock star who we all wanted to see was fine, we suppose, but we're left feeling a little empty, patronised, underwhelmed, bored, slightly stirred, but most of all, not feeling much at all.
As always with VW the tune is catchy, the dimensions are well thought out, and the SUV that South Africans will undoubtedly and eventually buy most will, no doubt, be exceptionally good. For the young family, this will be the most sought after new toy from the Highveld to the Cape and it will likely remain so, facelift after facelift, until the end of time.
But what the hell is going on with the brightly coloured cabin? Traditionally Gusheshe is a fan of brightly coloured interiors and agrees with most that it is "funky". But now that every small SUV seems painted by a toddler - the latest being the Hyundai Kona (which has really made it tacky) - bright coloured interiors feel like they're trying too hard, and like the interior of a nursery school, feel like they're trying to distract the mind with colour to make us feel special.
We concede that this is cynical, yes, and perhaps we're embarrassed that we too are a part of the consumerist machine and likewise woo'ed by the gimmicks of giant corporates as they look to stand out in a crowd of colourful cabins. But still, we're upset that VW, like the rest of them, will get away with it, and make us all wrongly believe that we're special. Because why? We can customise cabin colour within the limits of how much the world's best-selling car manufacturer allows us to - and because of that we should rejoice and spend money?
"What's your point then?" you ask. Nothing really we suppose. The car looks fine, we suppose. Of course it does. Most VWs do and we especially like the backside - but when was the last time VW released something that really made you look twice, something that redefined the landscape of a segment? This is not innovative stuff by Volkswagen - it's colourful stuff. In navy blue with a white roof, it actually looks likes a Renault Captur and for a moment in the trailer I thought it actually was a Captur that they were going exploit in order to highlight the T-ROC with an industry-stirring and provocative overtake. But nope, it was just a navy blue T-ROC.
Look, VW certainly have it all figured out and their numbers prove it. We like VW! We're South African, of course we do. VW is as a part of our genes as Nelson Mandela is. But to be honest, we're far more excited about the fully-electric I.D. VWs expected in the 2020s and this here - with its usual usual - is just usual usual VW and we're not too phased at all to be honest. A little patronised with the paintbrush, yes. A little Bored. But worst of all, we're deeply apathetic and that there is the worst feeling you can have - no feeling at all.
Expect it to start at around R400K - R450K.