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Expert Rating

Volkswagen Up

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Expert Rating

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Summary


The Volkswagen Up (styled as the up!) is a city car-class small hatchback, available with either three or five doors. It is effectively the same vehicle as the SEAT Mii and Skoda Citigo, neither of which are still on sale.

An electric version of the Up is also available, called the e-Up. Unsurprisingly, this is virtually identical to the SEAT Mii Electric and Skoda Citigo e iV. There is also a high-performance model called the Up GTI, which is not covered here.

Despite being in production for nearly a decade, the Volkswagen Up is still one of the highest-rated small cars on sale. As of August 2021, its Expert Rating of 78% is the top-ranked city car and one of the top small cars on sale. Interestingly, this is significantly better than the electric e-Up, with the consensus of reviewers being that the little Volkswagen works much better as a petrol car than an electric one.

The Volkswagen Up has been highly praised for its build quality and driving dynamics, as well as its low running costs. However, its safety rating was downgraded by Euro NCAP due to its lack of modern accident-avoidance technology.

Key specifications


Body style: Small three- and five-door hatch
Engine: petrol
Price: From £12,910 on-road

Launched: Winter 2011/12
Last updated: Spring 2019
Replacement due: TBA


Media reviews


Reviews, road test and comparisons from across the UK automotive media. Click any of the boxes to view.

The Car Expert

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Auto Express

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Auto Trader

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Autocar

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Business Car

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Car Keys

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Carbuyer

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Carwow

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Eurekar

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Evo

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Green Car Guide

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Honest John

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Motors.co.uk

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Parkers

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The Sun

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The Sunday Times

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The Telegraph

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Top Gear

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What Car?

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Which?

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Safety rating


Overall rating: 3 stars
Date tested: December 2019

81%

ADULT OCCUPANT

83%

CHILD OCCUPANT

46%

VULNERABLE ROAD USERS

55%

SAFETY ASSIST

Notes on safety

The Volkswagen Up was initially given a five-star safety rating by Euro NCAP when it was first assessed, which was way back in 2011. However, it was reassessed in 2019 and downgraded to a three-star rating. It still provides competitive protection in the event of an accident, but it no longer meets the highest standards for avoiding an accident in the first place.

Eco rating


No eco rating

The Volkswagen Up has not been lab tested by Green NCAP. This is a new initiative, launched in 2018 as a sister organisation to Euro NCAP, and only a few cars have do far been assessed.

The Up is now an old car, so it is likely that it will never be tested by Green NCAP. If it does ever happen, we’ll update this page with the results.

Awards


Trophies, prizes and awards that the Volkswagen Up has received

2020

  • Auto Express Awards – Best City Car

2019

  • Auto Express Awards – Best City Car
  • What Car? Used Car Awards – Best City Car
  • DieselCar & EcoCar Top 50 – Best sub-110g/km Petrol Car

2018

  • Auto Express Awards – Best City Car

2017

  • Auto Express Awards – Best City Car

2016

  • Top Gear Awards – Best First Wheels
  • Telegraph Cars Awards – Best Car Under £10,000

2013

  • Fleet World Honours – Best City Car
  • What Car? Awards – Best City Car

2012

  • World Car of the Year
  • What Car? Awards – Car of the Year
  • Carbuyer Awards – Best City Car
  • Scottish Car of the Year Awards – Best Compact Car
  • Fleet World Honours – Best City Car
  • Next Green Car Awards – Best City Car

2011

  • Top Gear Awards – Best Small Car

Similar cars


If you’re looking at the Volkswagen Up, you might also be interested in these alternatives

Citroën C1 | Fiat 500 | Fiat Panda | Hyundai i10 | Kia Picanto | Peugeot 108 | SEAT Mii | Skoda Citigo | Toyota Aygo

Buy or lease a Volkswagen Up


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Best car rankings

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The Car Expert has the ultimate ranking of the best and worst new cars on sale, based on scores from 25 of the top UK motoring websites

Best car rankings

Want to see how this car ranks against its rivals?

The Car Expert has the ultimate ranking of the best and worst new cars on sale, based on scores from 25 of the top UK motoring websites