Volkswagen Up (2012) Review
Volkswagen Up (2012) At A Glance
Funky little city car. Cheap to run with low CO2. Lively and fun to drive. Large enough for four adults.
Automated manual is poor. Reports of clutch failure on manuals.
The Volkswagen Up is one of the most popular city cars in the segment, and competes directly with cars like the Toyota Aygo, Citroen C1, Peugeot 108, Hyundai i10 and its sister cars in the shape of the SEAT Mii and the Skoda Citigo. Conceived as a joint project to create a new city car for VW as well as SEAT and Skoda, the Up mixes traditional Volkswagen build quality and smart design with urban ability and impressive space efficiency given its size. Capable, fun to drive and available as an EV, the Up has a great deal going for it.
The Up was one of the most important cars Volkswagen has launched in the last few years, replacing the unloved Fox city car and instead offering a well thought out and compact package that’s economical, easy to drive and appealing to those downsizing from larger cars.
It’s nimble, distinctive, well built and represents good value for money. SEAT and Skoda both have their own versions, called the Mii and the Citigo, respectively, and while they are cheaper to buy and arguably more sensible choices, the appeal of the badge and the slightly more attractive design make it the most appealing of the three versions.
At launch, two versions of the same 1.0-litre petrol engine were offered, one with 60PS and one with 75PS. Both produce the same amount of torque and provide enough go to make town driving enjoyable, while a tall fifth gear makes motorway cruising subdued.
Latterly a turbocharged 1.0-litre version was introduced with 90PS, making the Up much more appealing to drive out of town. This same engine became the basis for the Up GTi, although this is considerably more expensive than the other versions.
The SEAT and Skoda versions went all-electric in 2019, and although the e-Up is available with the latest generation battery and motor tech, Volkswagen is the only one of the three to still offer a petrol version, in 60PS guise only.
There’s plenty of space in the cabin despite an overall length of just 3540mm. Space in the rear is good, with room for six-foot passengers, although it’s worth bearing in mind that it’ll drive much more slowly with four adults inside.
The boot is 251 litres, but can be expanded to 951 litres by folding the seats. Both the three-door model and five-door model have the same exterior dimensions and boot space, and while the Up is still ultimately a small car, it does offer an impressive amount of space given the compact exterior dimensions.
Sit behind the wheel and you could be forgiven for thinking you were in a larger car. The Volkswagen ‘feel’ permeates the cabin.
Everything is solid and well put together, and although there is a lack of soft touch materials the Up doesn’t feel any worse off for it. You’re still aware that this is a city car that is built down to a price, and some younger rivals have moved the game on a little, but this is still a pleasing cabin to spend time in.
It’s easy to drive too, with a characterful engine sound, smooth gear change and light steering. Visibility is good and because of the ‘wheel on each corner’ design you’re always very aware of the car’s small size, making it simple and enjoyable to thread through tight traffic. It’s handling is safe and secure rather than thrilling, but its sheer size makes it fun to punt along a quiet road.
Arguably there are more sensible options in the sector, but none of them can match the Up’s feel-good factor.
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On the inside of an Volkswagen Up (2012)
The comfortable and well designed driver’s seat is easy to adjust to a comfortable position and there’s plenty of stowage, including large door pockets, a drinks holder and a decent sized glove box.
The centre console is neat and simple, with all the controls in one place, rather than scattered. The instrument binnacle is clear, with a large speedo in the centre, flanked by a tiny rev counter on one side and a temperature gauge on the other.
Getting in and out of the back is tricky in the three-door but it’s not impossible. Once there it’s 'cosy', with enough space for a short trip. The five door is much easier to access, with wide opening doors –and there are also Isofix points for child seats, so for those with little ones it makes a lot of sense.
There’s an impressive 251 litre boot, which beats some cars from the class above.
Given Volkswagen’s semi-premium aspirations it was something of a challenge to translate that into a low-budget city car, but the reality is actually quite impressive.
The basic Up model isn’t packed with flair - you get varying shades of grey and black throughout - although you can fix this by choosing a higher specification model or even adding the ‘Sharkskin’ option. Moving one trim level up to the White or Black editions gets you a brighter dash panel, while the Beats also gets you smarter seat trim and a much brighter finish to the cabin.
It’s not all roses of course - there are some cheaper plastics dotted around the cabin but they feel built to last, which will matter more in the long run. The switches and buttons come direct from the Volkswagen stable too, so they feel like they’ve been pinched from a more expensive car, all of which boosts the feeling of quality.
Early Ups had a radio CD unit on low-end models, while higher up the range you got a supplementary system called Maps + More, a separate screen that offered Bluetooth for streaming and phone calls, satellite navigation and a trip computer.
On later models low-spec Ups have a CD player with a USB port and twin speakers, while higher grades and all new Ups get a dedicated phone cradle, DAB radio, auxiliary input and Bluetooth so you can connect your smartphone. Maps + More is now a dedicated app with TomTom navigation, an eco trainer and audio streaming. Of the two, the later system is preferable, as apart from anything it will benefit from regular updates and the ease of use.
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Volkswagen Up (2012) Value
A new Up remains one of the more expensive options in the city car class, particularly in the higher specification versions. The most basic 3-door model costs £12,705, compared to £11,015 for the basic Citroen C1, although the cheapest Hyundai i10 and Toyota Aygo models are £12,810 and £12,690 respectively.
The mid-range White and Black models add a little more equipment and cost £13,370 with five doors as standard, while the Beats model is £13,755. The top specification standard model is the R-Line at £14,525, while the performance GTi model is £16,140 for the 3-door model, while the pure EV e-Up is £20,555 including the current government plug-in car grant.
As for used examples, there are plenty to choose from thanks to the car’s popularity and several years of production, whether that is a nearly-new pre-reg car with low miles or an early car at a lower sticker price. A quick search of the classified ads turned up several examples with delivery mileage, in a range of specifications, for anything between £9,500 and £11,000 for a high-spec model.
For older examples, the earliest cars from 2013 are now approaching £4000, still a little more than the equivalent from SEAT or Skoda. The cheapest we found was a 2013 Take Up with five doors and under 50,000 miles for a fraction over £4000.
In the real world you should expect to beat 50mpg without little effort, and possibly over 60mpg if you drive the right way. The automated manual gearbox also costs a bit more in terms of fuel, which is another reason to give it a miss.
Ignore the Up GTI and the 90PS turbo, and the entire range is between group 1E and 3E, which means premiums don’t get much cheaper. That makes it as affordable as it possibly could be for new drivers, making it an ideal choice. Older and more experienced drivers can enjoy insuring their Citigo for as little as possible alongside fuel bills that are amongst the lowest in the class.
The 1.0-litre 90PS turbo is group 10E, so will push premiums up a little but not so much as to make it silly expensive.
New 1.0-litre 60PS models are measured under the tighter WLTP regulations are given an official combined figure of 50.4-52.3mpg, while used examples under the old regulations claimed between 62mpg and 68mpg combined depending on the specification.
Real MPG average for a Volkswagen Up (2012)
Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.
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Driving Volkswagen Up (2012)
With a wheel in each corner and short overhangs the car feels extremely nimble on a twistier road, and despite the modest power output on most models it can be fun to drive in the right conditions.
It isn’t bad over more rutted roads either, and although the suspension ‘thuds’ over lumps and bumps it never feels uncomfortable – so even if you live out of town in the countryside you should manage with the Up.
The light steering is precise, the visibility is very good and the handling is predictable, with more than enough grip offered by the front tyres.
Older Ups come with a 1.0-litre three cylinder petrol engine in 60PS or 75PS forms, with the turbocharged 90PS version introduced later and new cars sold only with the EV powertrain or the 60PS engine.
Performance isn’t overly impressive - the 60PS model takes 14.4 seconds to reach 62mph while the 75PS model takes 13.2 seconds - but the Up never feels as though it’s lacking in any way, particularly in town, which is where it's most at home. If you can find one the 90PS turbo petrol is a gem, giving the Up a useful extra slug of performance with very little penalty in terms of fuel consumption.
The engine ‘thrums’ in the way only a three-cylinder can – it sounds eager and willing when pushed without ever sounding strained or coarse. When you settle down to a cruise it’s impressively quiet and refined.
The Volkswagen Up has been tested twice by EuroNCAP. Once in 2011 when the car was initially launched, and then again in 2019 as the e-Up. In the first test it scored five stars, but in the most recent test it achieved three stars.
There are two mitigating factors in respect of the change in score. Firstly, Euro NCAP frequently raises the bar, so cars must keep getting safer to achieve a higher score, and secondly the e-Up is substantially heavier than the petrol Up - almost 400kg.
At launch, all models bar the entry-level Up (called Take Up) were fitted with ESC as standard, but this was included on all models when the range was revised in 2016. All new Ups come with ESC as standard, as well as lane assist, although automatic emergency braking is not available as an option on any version.
Volkswagen do not quote an official towing figure for the Up, and given its modest kerbweight and limited engine power, even if you can get a tow bar fitted it is not really suited to the job.
|1.0 115||59 mpg||8.8 s||110 g/km|
|1.0 60||63–69 mpg||13.2–16.7 s||94–105 g/km|
|1.0 60 ASG||64 mpg||15.3 s||103 g/km|
|1.0 75||60–69 mpg||13.2–14.9 s||94–108 g/km|
|1.0 75 ASG||63 mpg||13.9 s||105 g/km|
|1.0 90||64–67 mpg||9.9 s||101–106 g/km|
Volkswagen Up (2012) Models and Specs
With just a single engine option (other than the considerably more expensive Up GTI) on new cars there’s not much to think about on that front. On used examples, the 75PS is more useful out of town compared to the standard 60PS engine, while the 90PS turbocharged unit is the best of the bunch, although it was only available on more expensive models. The automated manual gearbox is also best avoided.
As for trim levels, the basic Up comes with more than you might expect, with things like air conditioning and alloy wheels as standard, so there’s no shame in going for the cheapest option.
Further up the range the Up Beats adds a more powerful audio system, but we’d skip the R-Line as the bigger alloys hurt the ride quality. On used models there are a myriad of models and special editions over the years, but we’d suggest looking at the Move Up as a minimum, with the High Up bringing extra luxury and Up Beats with the better audio system.
|Kerb Weight||926–1070 kg|
|Boot Space||251–959 L|
|Warranty||3 years / 60000 miles|
|Standard||Full-size spare wheel / Tyre-repair kit|
|Alternative||Full-size spare wheel|
|Road Tax Bands||A–B|
|Official MPG||58.9–68.9 mpg|
|Euro NCAP Safety Ratings|
On sale until April 2020
On sale until March 2018
|1.0 60ps Beats Asg 3dr||£11,320||65.7 mpg||15.3 s|
|1.0 60ps Beats Asg 5dr||£11,720||65.7 mpg||15.3 s|
|1.0 75ps Beats Asg 3dr||£11,815||64.2 mpg||13.9 s|
|1.0 75ps Beats Asg 5dr||£12,215||64.2 mpg||13.9 s|
On sale until April 2017
On sale until March 2017
|1.0 60ps Move Asg 3dr||£10,625||64.2 mpg||15.3 s|
|1.0 60ps Move Asg 5dr||£11,025||64.2 mpg||15.3 s|
|1.0 60ps Move BlueMotion Technology 3dr||£10,390||68.9 mpg||14.4 s|
|1.0 60ps Move BlueMotion Technology 5dr||£10,790||68.9 mpg||14.4 s|
|1.0 60ps Move Up 3dr||£10,030||62.8 mpg||14.4 s|
|1.0 60ps Move Up 5dr||£10,430||62.8 mpg||14.4 s|
|1.0 60ps Take Up 3dr||£8,975||62.8 mpg||14.4 s|
|1.0 60ps Take Up 5dr||£9,375||62.8 mpg||14.4 s|
|1.0 75ps High Asg 3dr||£12,225||62.8 mpg||13.9 s|
|1.0 75ps High Asg 5dr||£12,625||62.8 mpg||13.9 s|
|1.0 75ps High BlueMotion Technology 3dr||£11,990||67.3 mpg||13.2 s|
|1.0 75ps High BlueMotion Technology 5dr||£12,390||67.3 mpg||13.2 s|
|1.0 75ps High Up 3dr||£11,630||61.4 mpg||13.2 s|
|1.0 75ps High Up 5dr||£12,030||61.4 mpg||13.2 s|
On sale until June 2016
|1.0 60ps Look Up 3dr||£10,025||62.8 mpg||-|
On sale until April 2016
|1.0 60ps Look Up 5dr||£10,395||62.8 mpg||-|
On sale until January 2015
|Groove up 1.0 3dr||£12,125||60.1 mpg||13.2 s|
|Groove up 1.0 5dr||£12,500||60.1 mpg||13.2 s|
On sale until April 2013
|up! black 1.0 3dr||£11,455||60.1 mpg||13.2 s|
|up! black 1.0 5dr||£11,830||60.1 mpg||13.2 s|
|up! white 1.0 3dr||£11,455||60.1 mpg||13.2 s|
|up! white 1.0 5dr||£11,830||60.1 mpg||13.2 s|
- Funky little city car.
- Cheap to run with low CO2.
- Lively and fun to drive.
- Voted 'World Car of the Year 2012.
- Timing belts need replacing at 4 years/40k miles.
- Manual gearbox oil should be replaced at three years.
- Poor ride on 17-inch wheels.
- Some interior trim looks cheap.
- Cannot tow 750kg.
What to watch out for
13-8-2012: Report of clutch failure on September 2012 Up at 1604 miles.
5-9-2013: Paint runs into blisters on edges of doors, boot and bonnet on new High Up taken delivery of on 1-9-2013.
17-10-2013: Report of bulkhead leaks. May be blocked drains to the bulkhead vent well, or a failed seal or cover to the pollen filter.
21-2-2014: New Up ASG automated manual gearbox has given trouble from delivery. Sometimes the car will not move because the gear lever will not select a gear. Moving away from traffic lights on a hill the car sometimes stalls. It has been back to the dealer for a software update and there was some improvement.
30-5-2014: Complaint from 80 year old of "simply dreadful" Up ASG automated manual. We explained that the system cushions upchanges and he must not press the accelerator harder when it does this.
9-1-2015: Reader finds difficulty getting new Up into reverse gear without double de-clutching. Told by the dealer "it is a characteristic."
3-6-2015: 38 month old Volkswagen Up suffered clutch/transmission failure at 28k miles. May be clutch. May be transmission itself.
17-6-2015: Clutch failure of 2013 Volkswagen Up reported at 9,500 miles.
7-9-2015: ABS and Traction Control lights showing on 2012 Up, just over 3 years old. Fixed before by dealer, but refuses to fix now car is out of warranty. DRLs "blow on a regular basis".
28-12-2015: Gearbox of 6600 mile 2013/63 Up ASG (that had a software update) developed a problem where reverse won't engage when cold. It takes a number of attempts moving from drive to reverse and back before it will engage. Supplying VW dealer denied any knowledge of the problem.
21-2-2016: 2012 Volkswagen Up failed to start. Diagnostics said “fuel pump control circuit”, the garage changed the relay and car ran again. Same thing happened 3 weeks later, indicating a fault with the earth to the relay, the fuel tank sender pump or the earth to the fuel tank sender pump. Diagnostics can never tell more than “fuel pump control circuit”. They can't pinpoint this fault.
12-5-2016: Report of EPAS of 2014 Up suddenly failing. AA diagnosed some faults, cleard them, disconnected the battery, re-connected and all working again.
6-6-2016: Parking brake of 10k mile Up mysteriously stuck on after standing for 2 days. Rocking side to side freed it off.
6-2-2017: Report of engine coolant sensor (radiator fan thermo-switch) failing on a 2013 Up.
22-2-2017: Report of "sudden" clutch failure in a 3-year old Up.
17-3-2017: Report of rear drum brake cylinders of 2013 Up starting to leak at 32,000 miles. Estimated cost of repair £307.
2-2-2018: Report of corrosion of both front wings of 2012 Volkswagen Up (Bubbling paint at the top of the wheelarches.) Inspected by Volkswagen's independent repairer who confirmed that the vehicle hadn't suffered any previous accident damage and recommended two new wings. Volkswagen queried this and replaced one but repaired the other. Not covered by Volkswagen anti-corrosion warranty because they claimed defective paint, which is only warranted for three years. Owner asked to pay 25% of the cost which was £125. The fact that that it was in exactly the same place on both wings would signify that this might be a regular problem.
5-2-2018: Report of clutch failure on a September 2016 Up at 12,500 miles. Dealer quoted a huge £1100 to replace it.
15-7-2018: Report of gearbox problems with 2012 Take Up at 24,000 miles. At first a difficulty in engaging 1st or reverse. Now slipping out of 5th. Quoted £2000 for a new gearbox and £500 for fitting.
21-8-2018: Penetrative corrosion reported on 2012 Move Up near the filler cap. Uncertain if caused by paint chipped with a filler nozzle.
23-9-2018: Report of body corrosion on a 2012 Up. Dealer told owner that it’s covered in the warranty, and will probably replace part of a panel. "However, a month has gone by and as the man who needs to sanction the work is off sick nothing has happened and will not happen until his return. Of which there is no idea of his return. Firstly, I’m annoyed I have rust on a 12 plate car and secondly the dealer is totally unconcerned about sorting the problem until this man return(bought new) at 9,000 s to work sometime in the future."
11-11-2018: Report of power steering failing on 2015 Up at 20k miles, 4 months after bought used privately. Red warning light is permanently on and there is no power steering. Volkswagen is now saying it needs a new steering column and control panel at a cost of almost £2000. Independent Power Steering Specialists recommended.
10-1-2019: Report of 12,000 mile 2016 High Up run on Shell V-Power failing its first MoT on emissions. Later transpired that cat converter lambda sensor had failed. Replaced and running fine again.
10-1-2019: Report of two clutch faulures on 2017 Beats Up 75PS in under 4000 miles. 1st one just over 2k by backing it up hill into owner's garage. 2nd clutch after 1,800 miles only backing into the garage twice. Owner been driving for 65 years never burned a clutch before.
9-6-2019: Report of both DRLs failing on 2016 High Up at 13,000 miles.
2-7-2019: Clutch failure after "burning smell" reported on 2016 Up at 9,000 miles. Clutch was replaced under warranty as a manufacturing fault (despite VWG clutch warranty of only 6 months). Now at just under 3 years and 30,000 mies clutch is starting to smell again.
31-8-2019: Report of transmission whine in 30,000 mile 2013 Move Up, originally bought new and serviced regularly, firstly with the Main Dealer and when out of warranty with a reputable independent specialist. Whine thought to be a bearing failure and advised not to drive it unyil the transmission is removed and inspected in case more metal comes away and causes catastrophic failure of the box and/or its casing. Facing a £1500 bill.
22-9-2019: Report of burning smell from clutch of June 2018 Up Beats at 4800 miles when ascending gradients on the motorway. Car services on time. Owner lives in flat area with no steep hills.
26-10-2019: Report of significant rainwater leak into driver's footwell of 2015 VW Up after being left standing for 10 days. Supplying VW dealer traced leak to a faulty seal where wiring passes through the bulkhead separating engine and passenger compartments. Owner being charged £1k to rectify.
13-11-2019: Report of 20,000 mile 2013 VW Up intermittently reverting to two cylinders with both the engine management light and catalytic converter lights coming on. VW dealer can’t find anything wrong. The car is run on V-power superunleaded. Might be a blocked EGR. Might need a timing belt change.
18-12-2019: Three Star Euro NCAP rating for 2020 Volkswagen Up, comprising 81% Adult Occupant protection; 83% Child Occupant protection; 46% Vulnerable Road User protection (pedestrians, cyclists, etc.); and 55% Safety Assist.
3-5-2013: SEAT Mii, Skoda Citigo and Up recalled because some may be fitted with airbag control units with incorrect parameters programmed. On these vehicles the diagnostic function for the side crash sensors is deactivated resulting in potential faults not being recognised and the airbag warning not illuminating. The recall was to reprogramme the airbag cvontrol unit. Build dates 14-1-2013 to 19-3-2013. VINs: VSSZZZAAZDD320365 to VSSZZZAAZDD324562.
22-03-2017: R/2017/079: Airbag/belt tensioners may not trigger in event of an accident: Due to an error in the manufacturing process the air bag and/or seat belt pretensioner may not trigger in the event of a collision. Fix: On affected vehicles replace air bag assembly and seatbelt pretensioner where necessary. VIN: WVGZZZ1TZHW015832 to WVGZZZ1TZHW029384; WVWZZZAUZHP016078 to WVWZZZAUZHP552907; WV2ZZZ7HZHH020247 to WV2ZZZ7HZHH084411; WVWZZZ3CZHE029991 to WVWZZZ3CZHP013537; WVWZZZ13ZHV002320 to WVWZZZ13ZHV005588; WVGZZZ5NZHW320847 to WVGZZZ5NZHW847521; WVWZZZAAZHD005939 to WVWZZZAAZHD037356; WV1ZZZ2HZHH002360 to WV1ZZZ2HZHH002373; WVWZZZAUZHW037011 to WVWZZZAUZHW804016; WV1ZZZ7HZHX013663 to WV1ZZZ7HZHX014052; WV3ZZZ7JZHX014827 to WV3ZZZ7JZHX014827: Build dates: 01-05-2016 to 31-10-2016.
- August 2011: Volkswagen Up first shown
- October 2011: Volkswagen Up is now available to order
- August 2012: Up with ASG gearbox launched
- November 2013: Volkswagen Twin-Up revealed
- January 2015: Street Up and Club Up introduced
- April 2015
- January 2016
- February 2016: Mid-life upgrade for Volkswagen Up announced
- July 2016: Upgrade pricing announced and open for orders
- November 2016: Volkswagen announces new colours and customisation
- October 2018: Automated manual dropped from range
- October 2019: New engine for High Up!
- January 2020: Volkswagen Up range updated for 2020
Volkswagen Up first shown
The Up is an entirely new design, offering maximum space on a minimal footprint (3,540mm x 1,640mm), making it ideal for driving in the world’s cities. It will be launched in Europe in December. There are three versions for different budgets and needs: take up! is the entry-level car, move up! the comfort-oriented model and high up! the top version. At the car’s market launch, there will also be two models based on the high up!: up! black and up! white.
At 3.54 metres in length and 1.64 metres in width and 1.48 metres in height, the up! is one of the smallest four-seater cars. Its overall length consists of short body overhangs and a long wheelbase of 2.42 metres. Use of space in the car is exceptionally good, because of the wheelbase, which is one of the longest in the segment, combined with an engine that is mounted well forward. The 251-litre boot is also significantly larger than is typical in this class. When the rear seat is fully folded, cargo space is increased to 951 litres.
Volkswagen Up is now available to order
Ahead of the city specialist arriving in UK showrooms in spring 2012. While the up! might have the interior space and features of a larger car, its prices are in keeping with its small footprint, starting at £7,995 (RRP OTR), and rising to £11,180.
Shown in production form at this year’s Frankfurt Motor Show, the up! is an entirely new vehicle that offers space for four, the latest technology and highly efficient engines. From launch, the up! will be available with two 1.0-litre three-cylinder belt cam petrol engine options as well as a BlueMotion Technology version; it will have three doors and three trim levels – Take up!, Move up! and High up! – plus a special edition, the up! black and up! white. A five-door version is expected to join the line-up in the second half of 2012.
Take Up The range starts with the £7,995 1.0-litre 60 PS Take Up. Key items of specification include body-coloured bumpers, daytime running lights, front and side head/thorax airbags, the new RCD 215 CD radio with aux-in, rear ISOFIX points, and 14-inch steel wheels.
Move Up For £8,970, customers can upgrade to the Move Up. This brings a host of comfort-oriented features, including remote central locking, air conditioning, electric front windows, easy-entry seats, a height-adjustable driver’s seat, variable-height load floor and 60:40 split/fold rear seats. Outside, the Move Up gains body-coloured door mirrors and handles.
For just £360 more, the Move Up BlueMotion Technology adds a Stop/Start system that reduces urban fuel consumption by up to six per cent, battery regeneration and low rolling resistance tyres. These measures enhance combined fuel economy to an expected 67.2 mpg, and reduce emissions from 105 g/km to a forecast 97g/km – making it exempt from road tax.
High Up The £10,390 75 PS High Up model is perfect for sophisticated urbanites, coming as it does with heated front seats, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, gear lever and handbrake grip, electrically heated and adjustable door mirrors, the Maps & More personal infotainment device and a choice of dashboard colour. From the outside, the High Up is distinguished by its front fog lights and 15-inch alloy wheels.
Up black and Up white For the sybaritic, the special edition £11,180 Up Black and Up White models are based on the High Up, but add even more style, from the deep black pearl or pure white metallic paint to the chrome door mirror caps and door side strips to the 16-inch alloy wheels with body-coloured centre sections. Inside there is a body-coloured dash, special ‘stripes’ upholstery and carpet mats.
Options kept simple, with a choice of eight packs available, as detailed below.
- Sensor pack (£350): parking sensors, cruise control, multifunction computer
- Driver’s assistance pack (£400): City Emergency Braking, ESP, passenger airbag deactivation switch
- Comfort pack (£350): remote central locking, electric front windows, height adjustable driver’s seat
- Winter pack (£350): front fog lights, heated front seats, electrically heated and adjustable door mirrors
- Chrome pack (£250): chrome door mirror caps and side strips
- Sports pack (£450): 16-inch alloy wheels, sports suspension and tinted glass from the B-pillar backwards
- Sound pack (£100): four additional speakers (two front, two rear)
- Leather-look pack (£650): leather-look seats, leather-covered steering wheel, gear lever and handbrake, plus carpet mats
|Combined mpg||Price, £ RRP OTR|
|Take up!||1.0-litre 60 PS 5 spd manual||105||62.7||7,995|
|Move up!||1.0-litre 60 PS 5 spd manual||105||62.7||8,970|
|Move up!||1.0-litre BlueMotion Technology 60 PS 5 spd manual||97*||67.2*||9,330|
|High up!||1.0-litre 75 PS 5 spd manual||108||60.1||10,390|
|up! black||1.0-litre 75 PS 5 spd manual||108||60.1||11,180|
|up! white||1.0-litre 75 PS 5 spd manual||108||60.1||11,180|
Up with ASG gearbox launched
The Volkswagen Up is now available with a new automated manual gearbox (ASG). Costing £595, the automatic gearbox is available on both three and five-door Move Up and High Up models (excluding BlueMotion Technology versions). As well as being cost-effective, the new five-speed ASG gearbox is extremely efficient, with improved fuel economy and lower CO2 emissions when compared with its manual counterpart.
The ASG is an automated version of the five-speed manual gearbox in the Up. The driver simply uses the gear lever to select D (Drive), N (Neutral) or R (Reverse) (there is no P (Park)) and the gearbox switches to the optimum gear for the situation. The gear shift points have been calculated to help achieve maximum fuel efficiency, depending on road profile and throttle position. The driver can also change up or down manually using the gear lever. Steering wheel paddle shift is not available on the Up.
The new gearbox is space-efficient, with the activation systems taking up a minimum of room, and has also been optimised to be as light as possible: at around 30 kg, it weighs just three kilograms more than the manual version. Two electromechanical actuators are positioned directly on the gearbox, and control the gate selection and engage or disengage the gears. A further electric motor is used to control the clutch.
Volkswagen Twin-Up revealed
Volkswagen has unveiled a hybrid version of the up! city car at the Tokyo Motor Show. The twin up! concept uses a modified version of the XL1’s diesel-electric drivetrain and is said to return an incredible 257mpg.
The twin up! concept is based on a plug-in hybrid system, which combines a 0.8-litre two-cylinder turbodiesel engine, with a 27kW electric motor. Power is delivered to the front-wheels through a seven-speed DSG gearbox and top speed will be 87mph. However, acceleration will not be impressive, with official figures saying 0-62mph will take a zimmer frame rattling 15.7 seconds.
On battery power alone, the twin up! can cover a range of 31 miles, thanks to a 8.6 kWh lithium-ion battery pack that is positioned between the rear seats and the boot.
Combined torque peaks at 215Nm, while CO2 emissions are just 27g/km, which makes the twin up! exempt from London’s Congestion Charge.
Street Up and Club Up introduced
Prices start from £11,995 (RRP OTR). Both are based on the flagship High Up trim, which includes front fog lights, heated front seats and a 'Maps & More' portable infotainment device. However, the Street and Club Up are loaded with more styling features for an extra £610.
The Street up gets 16-inch Upsilon alloy wheels, standard Pure White, Black Pearl or Reflex Silver paint, 65% tinted glass from the B-pillar back, 'Street' badging, decals on side, bonnet, boot and roof, wing mirrors in silver (except for the Reflex Silver models on which they are black), body coloured bumpers with chrome moulding on the front fog lights, leather steering wheel with up! logo, up! scuff plates with yellow stripe, black roof lining, carpet mats and unique 'Street' cloth upholstery.
The Club up gets 16-inch Triangle alloy wheels, standard Blueberry metallic (unique to the Club up!) or Black Pearl paint, 65% tinted glass from the B-pillar back, 'Club' badging, decals on side panels in silver, wing mirrors in silver, up! scuff plates, black roof lining, carpet mats and unique 'Club' Tartan Tonic cloth upholstery. Both special editions are powered by the Up's more powerful 1.0-litre petrol engine delivering 75PS.
Factory fitted Park and Convenience Pack available for Up. Combines City Emergency Braking, parking sensors and Maps & More for £695 (£870 when ordered separately).
Look Up opened for orders, based on the Move Up. 1.0-litre 60 PS three-door offered with 15-inch Fortaleza alloy wheels, unique interior trim, black wing mirror casings and black foil decals. Range of colours include Saturn Yellow, Tornado Red or Pure White, adding a theoretical £1,000-worth of extra equipment and features for its £9,995 price (RRP OTR), an increase of £70 over the price of the standard Move Up.
Mid-life upgrade for Volkswagen Up announced
The main upgrade is an optional new 3-cylinder 1.0 TSI engine. This turbocharged direct petrol injection (TSI) delivers a powerful 90PS. Maximum torque of 160Nm is available from 1500 rpm. Top speed 116mph with 64.2mpg equating to 102g/km CO2.
Every version of the upgraded Up comes with new headlights with LED daytime running lights as standard, new bumpers, a prominent rear diffuser, newly designed tail lights, new exterior mirror housings with integrated indicator lights, new colours and décors for the dashpad (dashboard styling panel) as well as new seat designs.
New Smartphone integration. Just connect the smartphone above the dashpad, pair via Bluetooth and it becomes an infotainment system with navigation system and on-board computer functions, thanks to the Volkswagen app.
Choice of 13 body colours, 9 exterior decals, ten new dashpad designs, three roof colours, three design packs, two colour packs and two basic colours for the interior trim (“Titanium Black” and “Ceramique”), coloured alloy wheels and individualised-colour ambient light available for the top-of-the-range models.
Previous range of two three-cylinder engines continues with multi-point injection (MPI) that deliver 60PS or 75PS. These are augmented by the sporty new 1.0 TSI (90PS). While the zero tailpipe emission electric e-Up (82PS).
Seven trim levels: take up!, move up!, high up! and eco up! (all of which are available as two- and four-door versions) as well as the load up!, cross up! and e-up! (each available as a four-door version). An overview of the vehicle equipment upgrades:
Three new roof packs designed to match the paint schemes – including roofs painted in contrasting black, white or grey as well as contrasting colour door mirror caps and tinted rear windows. Other additions to the range are three design packs, including a dashpad, design decals for the exterior, and contrasting door mirror caps. The range of equipment packages is rounded off by the colour packs, with the up! being given a final eye-catching flourish – along with the contrasting colours “Hot Orange” or “Gold Beige” – with 16-inch alloy wheels, design decals for the body and matching door mirror caps.
Upgrade pricing announced and open for orders
Revised Up range includes new-for-2016 UP Beats model. Created in conjunction with high-end Californian electronics company Beats Audio and joining the familiar Take Up, Move Up, and High Up trims, the Up Beats feature a powerful 300-watt seven-speaker sound system, including a potent subwoofer in the boot.
External styling cues include bespoke colour combinations, Beats graphics and, depending on the colour of the car, red or black door mirrors. There’s also a subtle Beats badge on the B-pillar. Inside, the Up Beats has a 3D dashpad design, which includes the Beats logo, and a cream coloured interior.
The number of exterior paint colour options has increased from 10 to 13 and, of these, seven are new colours including ‘Costa Azul’, ‘Honey Yellow’ and ‘Savanna Gold’. The roof of the new up! can be coloured separately, via the new Roof Pack, in either black, white or ‘Urano Grey’. The Roof Pack also adds colour co-ordinated door mirrors and 65 per cent tinted rear side windows.
|Model||Engine||Gearbox||Doors||Power||CO 2 (g/km)||OTR RRP|
|Take up!||1.0-litre||Manual||3||60 PS||101*||£8,995.00|
|Take up!||1.0-litre||Manual||5||60 PS||101*||£9,395.00|
|Take up!||1.0-litre BMT||Manual||3||60 PS||96*||£9,295.00|
|Take up!||1.0-litre BMT||Manual||5||60 PS||96*||£9,695.00|
|Move up!||1.0-litre||Manual||3||60 PS||101*||£10,025.00|
|Move up!||1.0-litre||Manual||5||60 PS||101*||£10,425.00|
|Move up!||1.0-litre||ASG||3||60 PS||100*||£10,625,.00|
|Move up!||1.0-litre||ASG||5||60 PS||100*||£11,025.00|
|Move up!||1.0-litre BMT||Manual||3||60 PS||96*||£10,325.00|
|Move up!||1.0-litre BMT||Manual||5||60 PS||96*||£10,725.00|
|High up!||1.0-litre||Manual||3||75 PS||101*||£11,580.00|
|High up!||1.0-litre||Manual||5||75 PS||101*||£11,980.00|
|High up!||1.0-litre BMT||ASG||3||75 PS||97*||£12,480.00|
|High up!||1.0-litre BMT||ASG||5||75 PS||97*||£12,880.00|
|High up!||1.0-litre BMT||Manual||3||75 PS||96*||£11,880.00|
|High up!||1.0-litre BMT||Manual||5||75 PS||96*||£12,280.00|
|High up!||1.0-litre TSI||Manual||3||90 PS||108*||£12,055.00|
|High up!||1.0-litre TSI||Manual||5||90 PS||108*||£12,455.00|
|up! Beats||1.0-litre||Manual||3||60 PS||101*||£10,400.00|
|up! Beats||1.0-litre||Manual||5||60 PS||101*||£10,800.00|
|up! Beats||1.0-litre||ASG||3||60 PS||100*||£11,000.00|
|up! Beats||1.0-litre||ASG||5||60 PS||100*||£11,400.00|
|up! Beats||1.0-litre BMT||Manual||3||60 PS||96*||£10,700.00|
|up! Beats||1.0-litre BMT||Manual||5||60 PS||96*||£11,100.00|
|up! Beats||1.0-litre||Manual||3||75 PS||101*||£10,875.00|
|up! Beats||1.0-litre||Manual||5||75 PS||101*||£11,275.00|
|up! Beats||1.0-litre||ASG||3||75 PS||103*||£11,475.00|
|up! Beats||1.0-litre||ASG||5||75 PS||103*||£11,875.00|
|up! Beats||1.0-litre BMT||Manual||3||75 PS||96*||£11,175.00|
|up! Beats||1.0-litre BMT||Manual||5||75 PS||96*||£11,575.00|
|up! Beats||1.0-litre TSI||Manual||3||90 PS||108*||£11,350.00|
|up! Beats||1.0-litre TSI||Manual||5||90 PS||108*||£11,750.00|
Volkswagen announces new colours and customisation
Volkswagen customers can then specify a different coloured roof to fit their preferred scheme, with the options being ‘Black’, ‘White’ or ‘Grey’. The contrast between the roof and the bodywork can be particularly vivid, and can create a stylish combination that gives the Up a sporty finish or adds a premium designer tone to the city car’s surfaces.
The door mirrors have caps that can be finished in the same tone as the roof, or even be matched to the wheels. In this way, the personalisation options of the Up are almost unique to each customer. For example, the offbeat ‘Polygon Black’ wheels can be ordered with a ‘Fortana Red’ or a ‘Sandstorm Yellow’ finish. The wing mirrors can then be trimmed in the same tone of red or yellow to match.
This can be further embellished with a range of six side decals, plus a roof decal which reads ‘THIS SIDE Up’ (£150 RRP). There’s als a ‘Motorway’ decal that paints a road up the Up’s bonnet and over the roof. And if that striking style statements gets a bit too much, the decals can be simply removed.
The upper dashpad is available in nine different designs, which include solid colours and a ‘Pixels’ finish. The Honey Yellow 2D Pixels and the Red 2D Pixels dash designs are no-cost options, and also come with the chance to finish the seat bolsters in Honey Yellow or ‘Beam’ Black/Red cloth. In addition, the Up beats models have a unique ‘beats’ dashpad finish.
Despite the dazzling array of choice the process of selecting a complete new Up design has been simplified, with Volkswagen offering customers the chance to specify pre-defined style packs. As an example, the ‘La Boca Hot Orange’ alloy pack includes 16-inch ‘La Boca Black’ alloy wheels with a ‘Hot Orange’ finish, with ‘Hot Orange’ door mirrors and side decals. All this for £375 RRP.
The Cube White 3D design pack includes a ‘Cube White 3D’ dashpad, Black or White decals on the door panels and Black, White or Grey door mirrors. This pack costs £110 RRP. Additional design packs include Wood 3D Pixels and Pixels Savanna Gold 3D. .
Adding further fizz to the funky new Up package is the arrival of the new 90 PS turbocharged petrol engine. Available to order from Volkswagen Retailers now from £11,350 (RRP OTR), this new engine shifts the High Up and the Up beats from a standstill to 62 mph in a sprightly 9.9 seconds.
Automated manual dropped from range
Up models are no longer supplied with automated manual transmissions.
New engine for High Up!
High Up! specification now offered with 60PS 1.0-litre petrol engine.
Volkswagen Up range updated for 2020
The refreshed Up benefits from new trim levels. The entry-level car, fitted with 15-inch ‘Fortaleza’ alloy wheels, a five-inch colour Composition screen, smartphone navigation interface and DAB radio, is now simply named Up, and is available in both three and five-door body styles.
White and Black Edition versions are also now on sale, bringing 16-inch ‘La Boca’ wheels with black or white highlights, as well as a painted roof, mirror housings and dash pads finished in the corresponding colour. The White and Black Edition models are available only in practical five-door body style. Three-door versions are reserved for the GTI and entry-level model.
The Beats specification continues in the range, identifiable by its 15-inch ‘Radial’ alloy wheels, red or black mirror housings and Beats badging. On the inside is the exclusive Beats interior, while the car’s standout 300-watt sound system includes an under-boot-floor subwoofer by the famed audio specialist.
New to the Up range for 2020 is the R-Line specification. Bringing sportier features from Volkswagen’s R sub-brand, the Up R-Line has 16-inch ‘Triangle’ Black alloy wheels as standard and 17-inch ‘Polygon’ alloy wheels optionally available, while black painted roof and door mirror housings complement the sportier styling. Front fog lights sit within the bespoke R-Line bumper, while R-Line badging completes the styling package. The Up R-Line sits squatter than the standard Up, with lowered sports suspension. In addition, the high-end R-Line receives comfort features such as heated front seats alongside electrically heated and adjustable door mirrors.
At the top of the line-up is the GTI, which returns with 17-inch ‘Oswald’ alloy wheels, GTI badging and the hallmark ‘Jacara’ checked cloth upholstery, as well as ambient lighting.
Volkswagen up! prices, fuel economy and CO2
CO2 (g/km, WLTP)
Fuel economy (mpg, WLTP combined)
Price (RRP OTR)
Black/White Edition (5dr)