Most people probably won't know the difference, which makes you wonder why Volkswagen is planning to sell two cars in virtually the same segment. But the T-Roc is Golf-like in its platform setup whereas this T-Cross is a Polo with a taller body.
For a while, this was actually called the "Polo SUV" project. It rides on the MQB A0 platform for small cars, which it shares with the SEAT Arona and a yet unnamed Skoda model. The European version is 4.11 meters long, but China's is even longer.
While we don't think it's as fashionable as the Polo, VW will disagree, as the T-Cross will have 12 bright paints, contrasting roof options, and even color wheels.
Volkswagen is, as usual, a bit late entering this crossover segment. And as a result, engineers are eager to give the full VW experience. That's why this small car has been equipped with LED lighting, though rivals like the Mokka X also have it.
The T-Cross will be available at launch with three familiar petrol engines, a 1.0-liter turbo 3-cylinder with 95 and 115 HP plus the 1.5 TSI with 150 HP. For certain markets, there will also be a 1.6-liter TDI with 115 HP, but probably not in the European Union.
There won't, however, be any AWD. But most if not all competitors don't have it either. If you really need more traction, the T-Roc has it.
From the Polo it will also borrow safety systems, the most important being adaptive cruise control with emergency stop and lane-keep assist.