The wait is over – this is the Volkswagen Nivus, officially presented by the brand and with photos that lack camouflage (unlike what happened in April). The crossover, with its coupe-like design, will go on sale in Brazil at the end of June, being fully developed in the country. It will arrive in Argentina later this year and in Europe in 2021. It gives the German brand yet another crossover into the Brazilian market, seeking customers who want a model that's different in design to the T-Cross.
Besides complementing Volkswagen's crossover line, Nivus shows the versatility of the MQB-A0 platform, a cheaper version of Golf's MQB that's used by the Polo, Virtus, and T-Cross. We see this in the car's measurements, which has a 2.56-meter (100.79-inch) wheelbase, the same as the Polo, but it measures 4.26 meters (167.72 inches) in total length. That's longer than the T-Cross and its 4.19-meter (164.96-inch) length and 2.65-meter (104.33-inch) wheelbase, which is the same as Virtus.
This difference in length from the Nivus to the T-Cross is mainly in the rear, giving the Nivus a cavernous cargo hold: 415 liters (14.66 cubic-feet). That's noticeably more than the T-Cross with its 373 liters of carbo space (13.17 cubic-feet). However, the Nivus has a lower roof than the T-Cross, which will affect headspace for rear passengers.
Volkswagen did not talk about pricing or equipment, something that the company is likely holding back for the beginning of next month. However, dealers did spill the beans. They disclosed pricing and equipment information, along with details about the three trims: 200 TSI, Comfortline, and Highline.
The Volkswagen Nivus will be a more accessible offering than the T-Cross. The entry-level version will cost R$79,990 (~$14,800, at current exchange rates), which is R$8,800 ($1,600) less than the R$88,790 ($16,400) currently needed for the manual-equipped T-Cross 200 TSI. The Nivus will use the same 1.0 turbocharged engine that makes 128 horsepower (95 kilowatts), but it's only available with a 6-speed automatic transmission.
Higher Nivus trims will also be cheaper than T-Cross. The Nivus Highline will cost R$97,990 ($18,100), a difference of R$20,700 ($3,800) compared to T-Cross Highline with its 1.4-liter, 150-hp (111-kW) engine. Even the bigger brother's Comfortline version is much more expensive than the top-of-the-line Nivus, as it costs R$110,260 ($20,400) or R$12,360 ($2,300) more than the T-Cross.
As we've seen before, the crossover-coupe will make use of VW's vast equipment stockpile. To start with, it will offer adaptive cruise control (ACC), an item that only appeared in more expensive models of the brand. It will maintain the level of safety seen in the T-Cross, such as the six airbags (front and side), stability and traction controls, and automatic emergency braking.
Another premiere will be the VW Play multimedia center. Developed entirely in Brazil, it uses a 10.1-inch screen, betting on customization of what is being displayed according to the user's taste. It will have the option of creating profiles for each driver, connecting with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay (with wireless function only for iOS models), and an application store of its own. It will be the new standard of the brand in Brazil and will gradually find its way into other Brazilian VWs.
By the list of equipment disclosed by dealers, Nivus will come standard with six airbags, air conditioning, stability and traction control, LED rear lights, a rear parking sensor, cruise control, Composition Touch multimedia center, a multifunctional steering wheel, and more. It can be equipped with a rearview camera, electrically adjustable mirrors, rain and light sensors, and a few more items in the optional packages.
The Comfortline variant adds a digital air conditioner, a reverse camera, LED cabin lighting, a tire pressure monitor, digital Info display, steering wheel with paddle shifters for gear changes, a drive mode selector, and other items. Optional equipment includes rain and light sensors, automatic post-collision braking, front parking sensors, leather trim, and alloy wheels.
In the top-of-the-line Highline trim, Nivus receives 17-inch wheels, a Discover Media multimedia center, rain and twilight sensors, leather trim, front collision alert, and automatic post-collision braking. Visual enhancements include chrome details inside and out. Optional features include the R-Line package with a gloss black finish, the Tech & Beats Package with adaptive cruise control, full-LED headlights, and a Beats sound system. VW's Play multimedia center is an available option for all trims.
Volkswagen will launch the 2021 Nivus in Brazil in late June. Pre-sales begin at the start of the month.