Is Volkswagen Up a good car?

Volkswagen Up

The Volkswagen Up is the smallest car VW makes, but don’t get fooled into thinking that small size means a lack of quality because the VW Up is a lot more sophisticated than what it may seem from the outside. However, is Volkswagen Up a good car? It depends on how you look at it because the Up is a great car for what it is, yet it can not be compared to any other car that is not in its segment.

The VW Up engine lineup consists of a few 1.0L 3-cylinder inline engines with power outputs ranging from 60hp to 115hp for the top-of-the-line GTI models. The Up does not come in diesel variants while there are a few hybrid and electric versions with the VW e-Up which are only starting to become popular.

Design-wise, the VW Up is small, so much so that its size dwarfs everything else about the car. Interior-wise, the Up is also small, but not as much as you’d think given the outside proportions. The driving experience is surprisingly stable and comfortable, especially when considering the higher-end GTI models.

The VW Up is a relatively reliable car as well as it is fairly simple in its construction and not many people tend to drive these a lot. Value is strong as these are not expensive to buy to begin with while practicality makes it only decent if you tend to drive by yourself.

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VW UP – The powertrain

As mentioned in the beginning, the VW Up comes with a 1.0L 3-cylinder engine making between 60hp and 115hp. This means you can get a VW Up in various engine configurations with 60hp,70hp,80hp,90hp, and 115hp. All of these are based on the same engine which means that the only difference is the state of tune and the turbocharger used for the GTI model.

The VW Up is also available with a few hybrid and electric engines where the most popular one is the VW e-Up, a fully electric version of the VW Up. The VW Up is designed with efficiency in mind which means that the most efficient gasoline engines are available of returning up to almost 60MPG.

All VW Up models are strictly FWD cars while you can get both a 5-speed manual version or an ASG automatic. The VW Up GTI has the most entertaining engine of the lot and even though 115hp might not sound like much, it does make the Up GTI incredibly fast.

VW Up – Design and chassis

The VW Up is a small city car which means that hardly anyone is ever going to turn their heads when a VW Up goes past. It’s a small, harmless-looking automobile that looks neat, but it’s not exciting at all. Interior-wise, the VW Up looks surprisingly sophisticated considering its size which means that it does punch above its weight limit when it comes to interior design.

The suspension and chassis tuning of the VW Up is solely focused on comfort which means that the VW Up is no sports car. However, the VW Up GTI is a lot more dynamic and some people even take these to track events, but mostly for the fun of it, not really because the Up GTI is a true sports car.

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VW Up – Reliability and common issues

The VW Up is a surprisingly reliable car, but that could very easily be since not many of these ever manage to do any serious miles anyway and because they are very simple in construction. That does not mean that the VW Up does not suffer from its share of issues, because it does.

The most common VW Up issues are associated with the engine, the gearbox, the steering system clockspring, the ignition coils, and the electrics. Maintenance-wise, the VW Up is cheap and fairly easy to maintain.

VW Up – Value and practicality

The VW Up can be had for just a few thousand dollars which means that it’s a really affordable car. They don’t depreciate all that heavily because they are cheap. As far as practicality is concerned, the VW Up is as you’d expect an unpractical car, but only if you often travel with multiple passengers.

There is also a four-door version of the VW Up, but it is not as popular. Cargo space is limited, to say the least, while the overall visibility is pretty good.

FAQ Section

Is the VW Up worth it?

Many people are drawn to the VW Up because it is a full-fledged VW with a price that is not all VW-like. However, it only makes sense to buy one if you are in the market for such a car. City get-around cars have become popular in the last decade or two with the arrival of the Fiat 500, the Renault Twizzy, and the Smart.

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These cars are not to be used anywhere else but the city, but many people use cars such as the Fiat or the VW even for long-distance journeys. That being said, if you need a car for busy city streets, the VW Up is worth it, but if you want a more everyday type of car that can do everything, then it is not worth it.

Why is the VW Up discontinued?

The VW Up stopped production a year ago because it made no sense to make it, especially because VW has now introduced the new ID. lineup which could potentially spawn a VW Up successor. The Up has been around for quite a while, but VW didn’t do all that much to change it throughout the years.

Since the Dieselgate scandal, VW is slowly changing its entire lineup to include more electric cars while some even more popular cars like the VW Passat sedan are going out of production.

Is the VW Up safe?

Back in 2011, the VW Up earned a stellar 5-star safety rating with ease. Even though you might think that a car as small as the VW Up is not safe, crash testing has shown otherwise. This is because VW spends huge amounts of money on making cars as safe as possible.

Even with cars as small as the Up, VW has made all the right adjustments not to sacrifice safety.

Marko Mikulic

Why do you love writing about cars? I love writing about cars as cars are a huge personal interest of mine. I was raised in a car enthusiast community and ever since I was young, I always wanted to do car-related work.

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