What Car? says...
A What Car? Car of the Year. Yes, the Volkswagen Up is a previous winner of our greatest accolade and was once the benchmark by which all city cars were measured. But that was back in 2012, and when the Up first arrived on the scene, its competition was limited: the Fiat 500, the previous-generation Hyundai i10 and the Kia Picanto were its main rivals in terms of size.
These days, the competition is a whole lot fiercer. The Picanto and i10 have moved on in leaps and bounds, and the Up also competes with the mechanically identical Seat Mii and Skoda Citigo. Those two cars, however, have now gone fully electric and aren’t available with a petrol-powered engine at all, and the Up will prove a more practical choice for many.
Helping to keep the Up relevant; more trim levels are available with five doors than with three, and all have genuinely usable back seats for adults and children alike. That said, regardless of which version you go for, there’s still only two seatbelts in the back.
The 2020 model refresh also kept things simple, trimming the choice to just two petrol engines; one for the standard model and one for the hotter Up GTI. A fully electric Volkswagen e-Up is also available, and we’ve reviewed it separately.
So, does the Up still offer enough to stand out amongst its city car rivals, as well as similarly priced competition including the larger Dacia Sandero? And which trim level makes the most sense? Read on over the next few pages to find out.
If you decide you want to buy an Up, make sure you check out our latest deals to find out how much you could save.