Your eyes, by which you go astray, it warns in the Bible. You see, the thing about small and chunky SUVs is that while some of them look good enough to eat, not all of them are much cop when it comes to the driving experience. The T-Cross, however, is not only a rugged and handsome devil but it’s also sufficiently capable on the road to win the hearts of even the most hardened of car enthusiasts.
For starters, engine options are sensible but more than sufficient. The T-Cross has a 1.0-litre petrol engine in 94bhp and 114bhp flavours, along with a 148bhp 1.5 that’s available with a seven-speed DSG automatic gearbox only. There’s also a 94bhp 1.6-litre diesel option.
There are five trim levels, starting with S, which has 16in alloy wheels, air-con and an 8.0in infotainment system with a DAB radio. SE is better equipped, with 17in wheels, a variable-height boot floor, adaptive cruise control, auto lights and wipers, plus Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone connectivity.
Alterations in 2020 brought in the United trim, which is based on the SE. It actually has smaller, 16in alloys but adds front and rear parking sensors. SEL has these, too, plus LED headlights, dual-zone climate control and sat-nav. For sportier looks both inside and out, choose an R-Line. This model also gets 18in wheels and a 10.3in digital instrument cluster.
To drive, the T-Cross is a paragon of ease. The steering is light at low speeds yet weights up as the pace rises. Grip levels are high and it will hang on well in the bends. It’s refined and rides well, too. In fact, it’s nearly as polished as the Polo on which it’s based so, if not outright rip-snorting fun, it is at least a genuinely pleasant thing to punt around.
Even taller people will find plenty of room in the front of a T-Cross. Large door pockets can be found all around that will take a litre bottle, plus from SE spec upwards there are multiple USB charging sockets front and rear. The only major downside is that interior quality appears to have taken a nosedive because there isn’t a soft-touch plastic in sight, unlike in the less expensive Polo. Also, unless you find a T-Cross with a Design Pack fitted, the dashboard has no coloured highlights at all and looks very drab as a result.