SAFETY-conscious young families are the target of Volkswagen's just-revealed T-Roc compact SUV.
All versions of the small soft-roader will come with the latest driver aids, including with active lane-keeping assist, forward collision warning with pedestrian detection and city-speed automatic emergency braking.
More extensive safety software is expected to be offered as an optional pack(s), bundling the likes of adaptive cruise control with a stop-and-go function, rear cross-traffic alert, blind-spot monitoring and semi-automated parking.
The design is marked by slim plastic cladding around the wheel arches and black/silver skid panels under the front and rear bumpers to emphasise the fact this is a soft-roader suitable for light off-road work.
Inside there's a configurable digital driver's display and standard infotainment system with the smartphone connectivity.
The SUV will be sold with three petrol and three diesel engines in Europe and can be had in front and all-wheel-drive configuration and with a six-speed manual or seven-speed dual-clutch transmission.
VW Australia is expected to follow convention and restrict the manual gearbox to the entry level front-wheel-drive car to give it a pricepoint competitor with the likes of the class-leading Mazda CX-3, though - given the standard equipment - it isn't likely to challenge the Mazda's $20,490 starting price.
The T-Roc will also be the first VW with factory two-tone paintwork, with buyers able to order a contrasting colour on the roof, windscreen pillars and exterior mirror caps. The vehicle will also be sold in Style and Sport guises, mirroring the Comfortline and Highline specifications on the VW Golf.
VW Australia spokesman Paul Pottinger says full details of the T-Roc will be released at the Frankfurt Motor Show in two weeks' time.
The T-Roc will go on sale in Europe in November but the boom in compact SUVs - VW says global sales are predicted to double in the next decade - means the handful of right-hand-drive markets, including Australia, are expected to have to wait at least 12 months for deliveries.
Also set to be revealed in Frankfurt is Kia's new hot hatch.
Designed in European, Kia says the concept car indicates what the next-generation cee'd could look like.
"The concept presents a new body type for Kia. The extended hot hatch retains the athleticism of the current pro_cee'd model, while combining its striking visual presence with a dash of real-world versatility. Reworked and reimagined for a new generation of driver, it puts forward a bold vision for a potential member of the next-generation cee'd family,” a Kia statement said.
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