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They say good things come in small packages, and at only 3.5m long Volkswagen’s new city car is certainly small. To put that into context it is 28.5cm shorter than the unloved Fox it replaces and only 53.5cm longer than the original Mini. Volkswagen Up VW's done a good job with the styling There’s no denying VW has done a …

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Happy

Very tempted

I must say I am very tempted.

What about headroom and visibility? how tall is the reviewer, (I'm 1.93 metres)?

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Re: Very tempted

He said he was 5'11" (aka 1.83m - or more correctly 13.1 linguine).

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Re: Very tempted

Pulling my leg are you, This car can in no way be called pretty...

Should have gone to spec savers.

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Re: Very tempted

Compared to an Aygo, it's a right looker.

Sounds like it's nicer to drive than an Aygo as well and has a usable boot.

- Had an Aygo as a hire car once. Horrible little thing.

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Boffin

Re: Very tempted

"He said he was 5'11" (aka 1.83m - or more correctly 13.1 linguine)."

More precisely 180.3338 cm (1.8033m) or 12.881 linguine courtesy of the Reg Online Standards Converter

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Anonymous Coward

@compared to the Aygo

Only if you look through beer goggles, if you think it I'd pretty you've obviously never been out with a good looking pretty girl. Do you always end up waking up next to her ugly mate.

Give up the beer and quick.

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Surprisingly thirsty?

My Audi A3 cab (140bhp 2.0TDi) has averaged over 50mpg in its first 15,000 miles, despite the fact that I sometimes enjoy driving it. It's fairly easy to get >60mpg even with the lid off on any trip over about 10 miles. I would have thought it would be reasonable to expect 80-90mpg out of a car like this?

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Re: Surprisingly thirsty?

You are comparing apples with pears.

The size of this thing precludes the fitting of a larger, heavier turbodiesel engine. It's intended City Car use precludes the use of a DPF and these are now mandatory on oil-burners. Thus a petrol engine is a must.

The sweet spot for fuel consumption, if you're fuel-agnostic, is the Focus size.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Surprisingly thirsty?

Throw in my 10 year old Civic, boss's Astra Van or his wife's Corsa, all more than that, some by quite a margin.

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Boffin

Re: Surprisingly thirsty?

> You are comparing apples with pears.

Agreed, though it is possible to convert between the two. Diesel has about 12% more energy than the same volume of petrol, and correspondingly releases about 12% more CO2. (See, for example https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diesel_fuel#Fuel_value_and_price)

For a diesel car to have the same CO2 emissions as a petrol car that does 52mpg, it would need to do 52 * 1.12 = 58mpg.

> The sweet spot for fuel consumption, if you're fuel-agnostic, is the Focus size.

It depends on the type of driving. There are three main things that cause you to use fuel. Changing momentum, overcoming air resistance, and overcoming friction with the road.

For city driving, changing momentum is the dominant cause of fuel usage, since you spend a lot of time accelerating and decelerating, and you are going slowly enough for air resistance to not matter. The way to reduce this fuel usage is to reduce the weight of the car, hence city cars are small and lightweight. Since air resistance is neglible at low speeds, they don't need to be as aerodynamic.

For motorway driving, air resistance is dominant, since the force is proportional to the speed of the car cubed* but you don't change speed much. Here, reducing the car's weight doesn't have much of an effect, but making the car more aerodynamic does. This is why bigger cars can achieve high fuel economy for motorway driving.

Friction of tyres on the road is usually smaller than the other two causes of fuel usage, but chunky off road tyres are less efficient than slicker road tyres (unless you actually are off road, in which cases having the wheels spin road without you moving anywhere is infinitely inefficient).

*ignoring wind for simplicity

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FAIL

52MPG ?!?!

What a compromised car if you only get 52MPG in real world driving.

I get about that from a much bigger / better Toyota Auris 2.0D, and I am not making any special effort to be frugal.

I think I'll stick with the Toyota.

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Pint

Re: 52MPG ?!?!

That's what I was thinking, I'm not sure where you're winning here with the Up!, although admittedly it is a very nicely packaged car. I get 50+ MPG from my '07 diesel Astra Estate, which I can then haul almost anything around in at will, instead of being stuffed in a tiny box.

How about giving it some unique character? Get the 1.2 TDI from the Polo Bluemotion, stick it under the boot, raise that boot floor to be completely flat when the back seats are down, stuff the spare tyre in the space where the engine used to be at the front.

A unique 4 seater RWD hatch, and I guarantee with that engine on board, you'll get absolutely ridiculous economy.

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Re: 52MPG ?!?!

Uh... Or you could put an 8.0 litre W16 mid-chassis, throw in some radiators and ramp up the map to 1,000hp, like Bugatti did. That would be fun, too, right?

Unfortunately it's not the car on review, which is a small, city, petrol. As a commenter above has already pointed out, this is an extremely good economy for this type of car.

Reading a review of a car and then saying "why didn't they..." and coming up with a completely different concept is a bit, well, giraffe.

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Re: 52MPG ?!?!

Yes but the only thing you want from a small city car is good MPG.

It's like building an 1000hp 8L V16 and saying well it isn't fast but what do you expect from a supercar?

The only reason for not fitting a diesel is to sell it in the US, and the US aren't going to buy a family car that you can't fit 6kids and 36 cupholders in.

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Re: 52MPG ?!?!

Come on pals, this is a PETROL engine. My own 2011 Polo that likely sports a close cousin of this engine (3 cylinders, 1200CC) eats between 5.2L/100km and 6.0L/100. This converts to 54-47 mpg in your strange units if I'm not misled (most online converters seem to be for US gallons). I think it's pretty decent for a petrol engine, so at 50 mpg the Up is in the same ballpark.

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Re: 52MPG ?!?!

I know, I'm not exactly thinking in the realms of what's there, just daydreaming a bit.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: 52MPG ?!?!

Nope, you want small size since parking is hard to find in cities and you're often made to rent a space in London areas. I've seen some pretty tiny garages in cities too.

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Shrunk my a***

You call that shrunk? My fleet of Sirion Mk3s (I got two - 2003 and 2004) is 3.68 m in length (only 18 cm longer) and they have nearly double the luggage space, 5 doors, can seat 4 adults properly or 3 adults and two kids. VW still has a lot to learn in terms of interal space optimization and design :)

You call that fun to drive? The Sirions can hit 0-60 in 8s and the 4x4 can go onto country roads with several inches of soft mud on them from a weekly bout of torrential rain (like the one we are having now in the UK or the one they had in Europe in mid may). Now that is what I call fun to drive :)

They also do 52mpg if driven sensibly (very difficult with a car that goes like the proverbial clappers and growls like an angry bullterrier about to break off its leash). So VW economy is also just barely on par with a 2003 car.

One word: Meah.... Not impressed, not impressed... At all..

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Coat

13s 0-60?

Shoulda called it the Hurry Up...

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Wrong punctuation mark

Shouldda been called the Up?

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Thumb Up

Looks good.

It looks good, I love the way the sat nav integrates with the stereo and vehicle systems.

But I have to agree with others 50-52 mpg from a 1L petrol engine, that's really poor, should be knocking on the door of at least 60 mpg.

We've just picked up a Fiesta 1.6 TDCi ECOnetic and the first 200 miles we're getting 57mpg!

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Anonymous Coward

"Unique to a car in this class is the City Emergency Braking system"

So it's unrelated to the near-identical feature on this car's blood brother, the marginally cheaper just-lunched Skoda Citigo, then?

And as others have said, 50ish mpg?

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Facepalm

Re: "Unique to a car in this class is the City Emergency Braking system"

So it is not a bad copy of a long list of better designed, better executed and more fun to drive cars by Daihatsu and Suzuki?

We have seen only some of them in Europe and even the ones we have seen have been crippled by Toyota (Daihatsu) and GM (Suzuki) marketing. In Japan they have had ~10+ models across all manufacturers in this class at any give time for the last 30+ years. Hyundai and Kia also do cars in that category (Amica, Atoz, i10, Picanto, etc). If you want to "drawn" in a sea of cars in that category you need to go to the far east.

In any case, VW is neither original, nor the best in class. Its only redeeming feature is that it is VW which for some strange reason makes some people have a hard on and give it unjustified 0.95 reviews.

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Flame

I normally get 52mpg from a Renault bloody Megane with a roofbox.

Without the roofbox it gets 62ish.

Though I would accept the lower fuel economy in exchange for ELECTRICS THAT WORK!!

Sorry rant over now.

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Anonymous Coward

You did buy a Renault.

They've never understood electrics.

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I agree. My wife's got one, lovely car, but the electrics do just what they fancy. At the moment, the rear windows go down on their own.

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FAIL

what about the skoda citigo - same platform and better if you are not a badge snob

no mention of the other VAG cars based on the same platform, that are cheaper if you are not a badge snob

look at the Seat Mii, or the Skoda Citigo

the skoda is better equiped, cheaper and has been available in 5 door format since launch unlike the VW up which will not have a 5 door variant until q4 2012 or even q1 2013

in the auto express group test the skoda was more economical than the other 2, better equiped and cheaper like for like factory fit options

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FAIL

Re: what about the skoda citigo - same platform and better if you are not a badge snob

Fail yourself - both cars are mentioned in the penultimate paragraph

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Re: what about the skoda citigo - same platform and better if you are not a badge snob

These tiny cars aren't my cup of tea, but I'm not fond of expensive german badges either.

If the other half wanted a small car, I'd recommend a Skoda Citigroup.

Generally, according to warranty websites, they're better thrown together than their german compatriates.

(Mine would have to be the Octavia VRS though.)

Saw one of these "UP!"s the other day. In white. Didn't like the design, too cold, clinical and germanic. Like driving around in an iPod.

And whats the exclamation mark about? "Ja, dis is ein fun wagen. See der exclamation mark!"

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Good

Interior looks really attractive. Satnav has the advantage of cheap map updates, maybe?

50 Mpg is a little poor. As others have said, for maximum MPG, go for a diesel Focus. Technology means you have to PAY for food fuel economy, as the smallest/simplest engines aren't the most frugal.

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Facepalm

Frankfurt Motor Show

I was at the Frnkfurt Motor Show where this car was unveiled.

Walking along the fleet of cars looking at the number plates:

Red Car - Red Up!

Blue Car - Blue Up!

Yellow Car - Yellow Up!

Green Car - Green Up!

White Car - White Up!

wait for it...

Black Car - Black Up!

All it was missing was Jazz hands and the horn saying "Maaaaammmmmmmmy" when you pushed it...

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Coat

Re: Frankfurt Motor Show

I've heard that there's a customisable version in the offing. The purchaser will be able to specify individual panel colours, choose from a range of window tints, add a variety of styling accessories and also pick one of a wide selection of interior trim levels and materials.

Create a car that is unique: Up Yours.

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Re: Frankfurt Motor Show

Return of the multi-colour golf?

The one with every panel a different colour so that people knew you were an art teacher (did anyone else buy them?)

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Re: Frankfurt Motor Show

I don't think I want a Blue one.

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Re: Frankfurt Motor Show

That's the marketing they're using here in France. The colours names not the Jazz hands.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Frankfurt Motor Show

The Polo Harlequin? It looked like a scrap yard special, or that Bennetton F1 car from the early 90s.

My art teacher drove a Hyundai Accent. But then our school's art dept. got slammed at an inspection. The english teacher did drive a 2CV.

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MJI
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Re: multi-colour golf

I thought it looked like they had an accident and those were the only panels they could get.

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xyz
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Devil

A contractor writes....

I've got a factory chipped 3.5L merc with 7 speed box, dropped suspension, ultra low profiles tyres, tuned exhaust, electronically limited to 155mph, so my questions are.... what's mpg and why do you need it?

Oh and do you buy 2 of these cars, one for each foot?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: A contractor writes....

7 Speed?? 3.5L??

INKSPE!

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"There's lots of room in back for small car"

I don't care if English isn't your first language, you're never fitting a small car in the back of this one.

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Anonymous Coward

Well put.

> Aside from the BMC Mini and new Fiat 500, it’s the only very small car I actually like the look off.

And thanks for distinguishing between the real and BMW.

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Anonymous Coward

Err...

"There’s no denying VW has done a good job with the styling. Aside from the BMC Mini and new Fiat 500"

It looks like a fiat panda.

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Dab of Oppo

"The Volkswagen Up! is a b*tch and I spanked it"

~~ Troy Queef, Executive Associate Editor-At-Large for DAB OF OPPO magazine

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Painted metal interior?

There is a reason most modern cars don't go down that route, cheap it maybe but it is noisy, just try the Aygo or one of its identicals by other makes. Another tiny impractical pseudo eco-box with real world economy way below its claims and rivaled by other much more practical cars.

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Re: Painted metal interior?

Agreed. I still can't reconcile the comments of "typical premium VW finish" with the amount of bare metal on the interior surfaces (the dash is actually a plastic insert, painted in body colour, though). This is a cost-cutting measure, and nothing else.

The Up is good, but the new Fiat Panda is so much better in every way barring the badge-snobbery, perhaps, although the current Panda seems to enjoy something of a following as a statement against this sort of thing.

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Alert

Fuel economy

I should come clean here and admit I spent most of my week driving the Up with my right foot buried in the carpet - it being someone else's car and petrol. Had it been my car and fuel I'm pretty sure I could have got 60+mpg from it. My actual figure of 52mpg is probably the very worst you would get.

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Re: Fuel economy

Thanks for the admission - my comment that it was thirsty cost me a downvote - despite the fact that loads of people agreed with me! I feel better about it now :-)

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Anonymous Coward

Last week in BA High Life mag

I was reading a comparison between the Up! and the current Panda.

The Panda won.

I can undersand this. Last summer I rented a virtually brand new Panda in Spain and loved it.

Just before that The wife had bought a new Ford Ka and I commented on the similarity of lots of the driver interfaces. It turns out that the Panda, the Ka and the Fiat 500 are effecvtivy the same car (with minor differences) coming off the same production lines somewhere in the Czech Republic.

For me the panda is way the better car - and it has 4 doors.

From what I remember, Top Gear (the mag not the show) also put the Panda ahead.

I ike that city-breaking thing though, I could use that.

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Re: Last week in BA High Life mag

The car you had was the previous-model Panda, and it is indeed the basis of both the Ford Ka and Fiat 500 (and the Lancia/Chrysler Ypsilon). While the newest Panda (launched this year) has returned to Italy, the 500 and Ka are still both made in the same FIAT plant in Poland.

Ford did the cosmetic design for the Ka, based on FIAT's platform, but then completely outsourced the development of the car to FIAT, which makes it fun to see comments from reviewers in the likes of "What Car?" that claimed that the Ka would be mechanically more reliable than the 500, being a Ford.. (the only mechanical difference between the cars is a different rear suspension arm and dampers; everything else is 100% identical, and all FIAT).

The Up isn't a bad car - it's very good, and a world away from VW's previous efforts at this size. But it's not the best.

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