2009 Volkswagen Scirocco Preview

Jeff Youngs | Dec 31, 2008
FAST FACTS
  • All-new, third-generation model

  • Styling evokes earlier Giorgetto Giugiaro design

  • Front-wheel-drive (FWD) platform

  • Gasoline and diesel engines

  • On sale in late summer 2008

  • North American sales not announced

Introduction

The Volkswagen Scirocco traces its roots back to the Karmann Ghia, the German automaker's popular Italian-styled coup_ that was in production for nearly two decades beginning in the mid 1950s. Volkswagen was looking for a more modern replacement for the Beetle-based Ghia, so they chose to build the new car on their updated front engine/FWD Rabbit platform. The first Scirocco debuted in 1974 at the Geneva Motor Show. With styling penned by Giorgetto Giugiaro, the 2-door coup_ with a liftback was much sleeker and sportier than its platform twin, even though they shared nearly all of the same running gear. Over the next 18 years, the Scirocco continued to be the sportiest model in the lineup, even as it was sold side-by-side with Volkswagen's popular Rabbit/Golf GTI. VW discontinued the Scirocco in 1992, replacing it with the short-lived Corrado. The 2008 Geneva Motor Show marks the 34th anniversary of the first launch of the Scirocco, and the first introduction of an all-new, third-generation model. At this time, the 2009 Volkswagen Scirocco is designated for sale only in European markets.

Design

The all-new, 2009 Volkswagen Scirocco follows the tradition it established decades ago. It has re-emerged sleek and sporty, a 4-passenger coup_ with styling that appears a fitting evolution from the earlier Giorgetto Giugiaro designs. Again sharing a platform and drivetrain with its sibling, the Volkswagen Golf, the new Scirocco is about the same length, but nearly as wide as the larger Volkswagen Passat. With a sportier execution, the Scirocco sits lower than both.

Hardware

Standard features on the new 2009 Volkswagen Scirocco include 17-inch wheels, height-adjustable seats, split-folding rear seats, power windows, air conditioning, anti-lock brakes, stability control, and power steering. There are six air bags within the passenger cabin. Powertrains in Europe are expected to include a mix of gasoline and diesel engines. If the Scirocco makes it to the States, most expect the sporty FWD coup_ to be fitted with the 200-hp, 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine currently found in Volkswagen's GTI. It is naturally expected that the Scirocco will eventually be fitted with the more powerful 3.2-liter 6-cylinder engine found under the hood of the Volkswagen R32, and possibly carry its all-wheel-drive system as well.
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