Because the original Scirocco was one of the best coupes of all time, encapsulating all the virtues that the breed is meant to exemplify. It looked good, it drove well and it cost everyday hatchback money to run.
The mk1’s crisp lines, sharp handling and sturdy mechanicals earned it a devoted following back in the day – it was a sort of middle-class answer to the Ford Capri. Okay, so the ‘seventies rust-proofing meant that most of the first generation had fallen to pieces well before Maggie left power, but in the combination of general niceness with near-Golf practicality, the Scirocco led the way.
Now the new Scirocco is going to be bigger, heavier and considerably more ugly. I’m reliably informed that it doesn’t look as bad on a motorshow stand as it does in the pictures, but it’s still definitely not an oil painting. Okay, so we should be thankful it’s not a retro mash-up – most manufacturers’ first instinct when raiding their heritage – but it does just seem to be trying a little too hard.
But the biggest problem is cost. The original Scirocco matched the equivalent Golf’s engine-and-spec designations pretty much across the board. You could even get a 1.6 GL for schlepping your way to the shops and back. The new version looks like it’s heading fast and furiously to a drifting competition – with a 2.0 litre turbocharged motor a no prospect of change from £25 grand when it eventually goes on sale.
The old Scirocco was a nice car, driven by nice people. The new car has so little to do with the old that I’m wondering why they bothered reviving the windy old name. VW should have stuck with the IROC tag of the concept. Alternatively, if they were determined to reach into the corporate badge-drawer, then surely the new car would be better off wearing the Corrado tag – the original Scirocco’s punky younger sister.
The whole thing has left me feeling distinctly nostalgic, though. You can keep your TFSI engine, I’m off to find one of the last surviving mk2 Scalas to revel in its cheesy bodykit, chunky alloys and colour-keyed bumpers.