A very attractive family hatch, which stands out from the Fords and Vauxhalls in Britains car parks!
Nothing major except when I got home, my neighbour pointed out a scratch on the front wing (small, but deep), a chip on the bumper (again small) but more significantly, one of the alloys had been kerbed, which must have been caused at the dealer, or perhaps on a demo run. The car also had silver touch up paint on the window! Mentioned this to the dealer who denied they would have touched the paint up, but agreed to replace the wheel, which was something.
Also noticed the steering wheel is about 5 degrees out of line, but no-one else who has driven the car has noticed. It tracks OK so I don't think the kerbed alloy is related, and anyhow the scratching on the wheel is fairly superficial. But hey, it's my new car, and I think it should at least be in perfect order on day one! Perhaps I am being too critical?
Also noticed the headlights had condensation in them after four days, but this has cleared and as of yet it hasn't re-occured.
The car looks very impressive, and the fit and finish seems pretty good so far (paintwork issues not withstanding). However, it is brand new so can't expect any issues just yet.
It is amazingly well equipped with electric everything, and a fantastic 8 speaker stereo. Traction control is also a nice toy to have, and is handy on muddy or icy roads.
The smaller engine (1.6) is fine in town or on A roads, but it is rather "busy" on the motorway because of short gearing. At 70mph, the car is cruising at 3500rpm whereas an old Corolla Automatic I owned would have been spinning at 1900rpm at 70. It does affect fuel economy, but as I don't do a lot of mileage, there was no real benefit to buying the TDI model.
Handling is excellent, loads of grip and composure. Ride isn't too bad despite the stiffer sports suspension, certainly hasn't been a problem yet.
Some reviewers have criticised visibility, but I haven't had any problems. The parking sensors are a handy addition though.
Standard 100bhp VW 1600 engine should be reliable, and generally a simpler servicing proposition when compared with the turbodiesels and highly tuned 2 litre models.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 8th February, 2008