From £26,805
VW’s folding tin-top remains an exemplar of quality and refinement amongst its peers. Pricey, but worth it.

Our Verdict

Volkswagen Eos
The Volkswagen Eos is pleasant and predictable to drive

The Volkswagen Eos has much cachet and is pleasant and predictable to drive, but is feeling a little bit long-in-the-tooth

What is it?

A class act, that’s what – it is the facelifted Volkswagen Eos. Why? Because so often, convertible conversions of ordinary family hatchbacks end up as lesser cars, with compromised dynamics, performance and usability. Thanks to VW’s habitual attention-to-detail however, the Eos has always seemed more than the sum of its relatively humble parts.

See pics of the Volkswagen Eos 2.0 TDI DSG in action

What’s it like?

And all the more classy and desirable now that it’s been given a mid-life nip and tuck by VW. The exterior styling changes are concentrated around the head- and taillights, the grille and the front and rear bumpers. To these eyes, although they make the car look smart and more a part of the current VW model family, they do remove a little distinctiveness.

Thankfully for VW, the material and technical upgrades on the Eos are of more import. The updated car gets active cornering lights, a more expensively finished cabin with an extra smattering of matt chome trim, and some fresh seat fabrics. Keyless go is now an option, which comes with remote opening for the folding roof, as is ‘park pilot’ automatic parallel parking.

And under the bonnet there have been changes too. The Eos V6 has been dropped, and the 2.0-litre petrol and turbodiesel versions have been augmented with the offer of optional DSG gearboxes.

The 2.0-litre TDi we tested had that optional twin clutch ‘box, as well as VW’s Bluemotion Technology pack; automatic engine start-stop and an intelligent alternator to you and me. It seemed every bit the well-mannered, upmarket cruiser convertible you’d expect.

That diesel engine is relatively quiet and well-insulated, and the quick-shifting gearbox keeps it at barely audible revs while you’re wafting around town. The car rides equally softly and with compliance, and there’s little in the way of wind bluster or structural shimmy and shake to complain about with the roof down.

At higher speed, the car’s dynamics do deteriorate slightly with the roof down; you don’t quite get the same steering precision or ride comfort. But that’s testament to how quiet and stiff the car feels roof-up as much as anything else; in that mode, it might as well be a proper coupe.

Should I buy one?

The idea of a diesel droptop may still grate with some, but with better than 45mpg possible from this car, there are compensations for that slightly coarse exhaust note. And if you’re not totally appalled by the idea, few oil-burning CCs are better executed than this Eos.

It may look pricey next to a Renault Megane CC or Peugeot 308, but really it’s a cut above those cars – in terms of refinement, practicality, desirability and more. Think of it as a Volvo C70 or Saab 9-3 Convertible for several thousand pounds less and you’ll be nearer the mark.

Volkswagen Eos 2.0 TDi DSG Bluemotion Technology

Price: £25,920; Top speed: 127mph; 0-62mph: 10.3sec; Economy: 53.3mpg; Co2: 139g/km; Kerb weight: 1614kg; Engine type, cc: 4cyls in line, 1968cc, turbodiesel; Power: 138bhp at 4200rpm; Torque: 236lb ft at 1750-2500rpm; Gearbox: 6-spd twin clutch

Join the debate

Comments
13

7 March 2011

Personally the exterior is a definite improvement. It may be more VW generic but it suits the car better.

The interior, material quality aside is just a bit boring for me. I'm not saying it should be over stylised like the Focus, it could just do with a bit more character to make it a more desirable car.

 

 

It's all about the twisties........

8 March 2011

Lets be honest,this car is past its best now.bland inside and out.

8 March 2011

If only its retail price was right in Portugal!

Taxes and other charges make it unaffordable to most people who appreciate it; yet we have the ideal conditions for such a car here: sunshine ten months of the year, reasonable roads with enough twisty bits to make life fun but not too many to make it uncomfortable.

VW could strike gold if they managed to outwit the government: sell it as a loss-leader (almost, must keep it legal!) and watch as its sales nudge the Polo's, the favourite hire-car hack!

Maybe in two or three years' time? Unfortunately, second-hand values are also quite high...

 

Yves Ferrer

8 March 2011

Competent no doubt, but no head turner. Corporate VW face is smart but dull.

I don't quite 'get' which people will pay over the odds for top VW models when they all resemble a Fox/Polo. And as for quality, had heard the tintop was giving above average issue of leakage and noise (as does C70).

8 March 2011

[quote TegTypeR]Personally the exterior is a definite improvement. It may be more VW generic but it suits the car better. [/quote] +1

Where has all Japanese design went to?

jer

8 March 2011

[quote TegTypeR]The interior, material quality aside is just a bit boring for me. I'm not saying it should be over stylised like the Focus, it could just do with a bit more character to make it a more desirable car[/quote]

Yes it puts me off Golf range cars as well. I know the quality is decent but it does look a bit basic and uninspired to me also.

Actually ditto the 3 series without Nav and that is also scored highly.

8 March 2011

I was worried they had ruined this a bit in the facelift, but in Black on UK plates it looks just as good as the original. Very nice car, I'd buy one.

9 March 2011

Hope they have sorted the roof and reliability issues. I used to own one. Spend more time at the dealership trying to get the endless rattling and leaking sorted, whenever it rained heavy, would end up with an inch or so of water in the boot, and the passenger footwell. Not to mention 2 breakdowns, one from an electrical fault and one when fuel pump gave up the ghost (luckily in my driveway). I usually keep a car for at least three/four years, and being my first convertible, was looking forward to keeping it even longer. Got shot of it after two.

9 March 2011

I think I'd prefer to save a bit of cash and go with the fabric-roofed convertible experience - the Golf.

9 March 2011

[quote jb2030]Hope they have sorted the roof and reliability issues. I used to own one. Spend more time at the dealership trying to get the endless rattling and leaking sorted, whenever it rained heavy, would end up with an inch or so of water in the boot, and the passenger footwell. [/quote]

Funny, we had loads of customers opting for the Eos as they'd just handed their Focus CC back due to terrible leaking issues!

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