► VW T-Roc Cabriolet confirmed
► To be built in Austria from 2020
► Spy pics capture winter testing
Here’s a crossover with some fresh-thinking: meet the new T-Roc Cabriolet, an open-topped version of Volkswagen’s T-Roc. After snapping pictures of the ‘crossovoadster’ testing earlier this year, we’ve now got official pictures of the new cabriolet – and it certainly adds an extra dose of ‘lifestyle.’
The Cabriolet is yet another choice for the T-Roc buyer, and predictably the first crossover to add an open-top variant. It takes nine seconds to open, and can even be open or closed when the car is moving, up to a speed of 18.6mph (30km/h).
There’s rollover protection which pops up in a fraction to guard all passengers, and the T-Roc Cabriolet also sports a reinforced windscreen.
The Cabriolet will use two petrol engines: the 1.0-litre three-cylinder and more powerful 1.5 four-cylinder blocks already available in the wider T-Roc range.
The T-Roc Cabriolet will make its debut at the Frankfurt Motor show, and the actual launch will take place in spring next year.
VW T-Roc convertible: the business case
In February 2018 Wolfsburg officially confirmed the new VW T-Roc Cabriolet, which will be built in its Osnabrück factory in Austria. It's the same facility that manufactures the VW Tiguan and Porsche 718 Cayman and there had been question marks over its staffing levels.
Volkswagen's board has now announced it's investing more than €80 million (£70m) in the facility to prepare it for new T-Roc drop-top.
VW T-Roc Cabriolet: the boss explains why
Volkswagen chief executive officer Herbert Diess said: 'Volkswagen is evolving into an SUV brand. The T-Roc is already setting new standards in the compact SUV segment. With the cabriolet based on the T-Roc, we will be adding a highly emotional model to the range.
'I am especially pleased to note that we can count on the Osnabrück team's decades of experience with convertibles. The Osnabrück plant now has bright prospects for the future.'
The Tiguan has quietly become quite a success story for the brand; it's one of the three top-selling SUVs globally, and in the worldwide top 10.
The T-Roc Cabriolet is one of 20 SUVs or crossovers Volkswagen will have on its books by 2020. Make no mistake about the growing popularity of the bodystyle: crossovers will account for around 40% of VW's sales by the end of the decade.
Read our VW T-Roc review here