After a 12-year run, Volkswagen has officially ceased production of its beloved city car, the Up, marking the end of an era. This final chapter was confirmed when the last Up car drove off the production line in Bratislava, Slovakia.
Initially launched in 2011, the Up swiftly made its mark in the automotive scene, becoming a favorite among those seeking affordability and compactness. It was introduced at a competitive starting price, but as its popularity grew, so did its price tag, eventually exceeding £15,000.
Over its lifetime, the Up underwent several updates. Originally, it was powered by a 1.0-litre three-cylinder petrol engine. However, by 2016, a turbocharged variant was added, pumping out 89bhp.
2014 saw the introduction of the electric version, the Volkswagen e-Up. Its debut was marked with an 18.7kWh battery promising 161 miles of range. In 2019, an upgrade with a larger 32.2kWh battery was launched, enhancing its range and making it a competitor even against newer electric rivals.
The spirited Up GTI variant, which debuted in 2018, was unfortunately short-lived. Despite being well-received, with its 113bhp and sporty design, it was discontinued in early 2021.
The Up was a part of Volkswagen's New Small Family series. Its cousins, the Seat Mii and Skoda Citigo, also concluded their runs in 2020 and 2021 respectively.
With the departure of the Up, the Polo now takes the crown as Volkswagen's smallest offering. However, rumblings from the industry suggest that even the Polo might not be long for this world, with Volkswagen considering an electric successor in the guise of the ID 2.
Nevertheless, the Up's legacy is poised to live on. Rumors indicate that an electric city car, potentially named the Volkswagen ID 1, might soon take the Up's place. Expected to hit dealerships within the next five years, this compact electric vehicle aims to carry on the Up's legacy of affordability, with a price point predicted to be under £17,000.
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Matt Brand, the esteemed car critic from Car Sauce, offers unparalleled expertise on all things automotive. From new car releases to pre-owned options, he provides in-depth analysis and honest evaluations to guide readers through the car-buying process. Join us as he delves into the exciting world of motoring.