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As you can see I don't post often on this
site but I'm going to make up for it with this review. This review is going to
tell the journey of my experience with my car from the time I ordered the car
to selling it and replacing it with a new car.







I ordered my Up! Black 1.0 MPI (75HP)
3-door with sensor pack, sound pack, spare wheel, mud flaps and (three year)
service plan in March 2012. I collected my new car during the last week of May
2012. First of all I would like to thank this forum for pointing me to the fact
that VW had changed the UP! Brochure regarding the number of remote keys that
came with the car. The brochure stated when I ordered the car that it came with
two remote keys and one manual key. By the time I collected my car; VW had
changed the brochure to state that the car came with one remote key and one
manual key. I wrote to VW and I received two remote keys and one manual key
when I collected the car. I think if I wanted a new remote key it would have cost
me £180 at the time.





I remember receiving flowers from the sales
person when I collected the car. The first thing I did when I got the car home
was to remove the partial shelf (which never seen the boot of the car for
nearly four years) and to remove the stupid VW dealer-advertising sticker. I don't know why people keep them on their
cars when you are giving the dealer free advertising.





Recommended by the forum at the time was to
replace the yellow coloured front indicators, day light running lights and main
front bulbs. I replaced the front indicator bulbs with Philips silver vision bulbs
that made the front of the car better looking and they were brighter than the
stock bulbs. The Philips bulbs lasted the entire time I owned the car and I
even left them in when I sold the car. I replaced the main bulbs with H4 Bosch
plus 90 low/dip beam bulbs and they gave a more white coloured light but only
lasted six months. I replaced the low/dip beam bulbs with the VW standard Osram
bulbs and they lasted the entire time that I owned the car. Finally, I also
replaced the DLRs with non-branded bulbs and they only lasted one year. The
DLRs were then replaced with the VW standard bulbs but the left DLR went out
after a year. This seems to be a problem with the UP! and I got new Bosch DLRs
and they also lasted the entire time that I owned the car.





My previous car to getting the UP! was my
first ever car which was a 2007 Toyota Aygo Blue (1.0; 67HP) with protection
pack. So going from the Aygo to the UP! was like day and night. The UP! was
quieter, quicker, similar economy and more comfortable to be in. The UP! had
more substantial doors and not a thin piece of glass which the Aygo had for a
boot door. The UP! had a leather steering wheel, better glove box door, alloy
wheels and cruise control that my Aygo never had.





When I had owned the UP! I got complements
from people that I knew and strangers about how nice the car looked from its
chrome door mirror caps, stripy seats with the word UP! wrote on it to the
white circle on the gear knob. I never got any complements from complete
strangers about the Toyota Aygo that I previously owned.





I have driven the UP! for approximately
36,000 miles from new on all manor of roads from tight city streets to
motorways. For one year of its life, I commuted daily a round trip of 100 miles
for five days during the week. The cruise control was great for the long trips
on the motorways. I filled the car's tank twice a week and during that year I
recorded the mpg from fill to fill. I worked out manually that I got between
46mpg in the winter months to the best figure of 52mpg during the warmer months.
I know that the car said I was getting between the high fifties and early
sixties for mpg but I didn't trust it. 52mpg was the best I had ever got out of
the car but I only kept calculating it for two years of its life. After that I
stopped calculating the mpg and I just drove the car. People can be caught up
in the numbers but at the end of the day; a car is meant to be driven.





Onto niggles that I have had with the car
over the four years that I had owned the vehicle. The thing that has annoyed me
the most about the UP! is it's crap radio. I have never had a worse car radio
than this. The car radio is a FM radio that is tied into the Maps and more. The
radio has a very bad reception and I know that various people on the forum have
had the same problems. I read once that during a long-term review of the UP! on
Auto Express that they had the same problem about the crackles from the radio.
When they took the car to VW, they said there was nothing wrong with it. I
think the radio is a cheap unit that VW grabbed from their parts bin to keep
the Accountants happy. I thought by replacing the roof aerial with a Polo
aerial that it would make things better but it didn't. Most of the time I drove
with no radio on or I put music on a microSD card and played it of the maps and
more. The sound pack that I got with the car only came into it's own when I
played music of the microSD.





Initially, I liked the maps and more with
its sat nav displaying the speed limit of the road, think blue information and
showing the music albums on the microSD card. The niggles of the maps and more
began to show with the slow tactile interface, intermittent Bluetooth and freezes.
I had to use a pin to reset the maps and more device approximately once a
month. I had map updates for the maps and more for nearly two years ending in
Q1 2014. I see why in the next UP! VW is replacing the maps and more with a
cradle for your smartphone instead.





The gearbox had its slight problems with
not going into reverse gear on some occasions. I had to lift my foot of the
clutch and depress it again to put the car into reverse. I think fellow people
on the forum have also had this problem. VW to my knowledge will be changing
the gearbox to resolve this problem in the new update to the car.





The cost cutting also got to me for example
just one electric window button on the driver side and that meant I had to lean
over to the passenger side to open its window. Also there is only one light in
the car at the front, which meant the back of the car was in darkness
especially the boot. I did enjoy the heated seats in the wintertime and that is
with fabric seats. The heat shield was replaced during the car's first service.





After the three-year warranty was up,
things needed changed such as changing three tires. One tire was replaced
because of an irreparable puncture and the only time I used the spare wheel.
The two front tires lasted 30,000 miles from new and were replaced with the
same Continental tires that came new with the car. The car began to have a
rumble sound from the brakes after three years of use. I found out from the
forum that it maybe warped brake discs and it was a design fault. I discovered
that the discs were warped and the pads also needed replaced. Due to the
warranty being expired, I had to pay for them being replaced.





Also after the three-year warranty expired
my LED's in the instrument cluster began to go out. So from 30 to 60mph went
dark and was hard to read at night. I had to use the digital mph in the
cluster. I took it to a VW dealership and they replaced it with a brand new
2012 VW UP! instrument cluster. The new cluster, discs, pads and fitting cost me
close to £700. The instrument cluster was replaced and the three keys had to be
reprogrammed. They reprogrammed one key and said that I could use the old keys
as well. I drove home and I tried one of the other keys that had not been
reprogrammed and the car would not start. I tried the original reprogrammed key
and it didn't work. I had to call VW and get a recovery vehicle out to look at
the car. The guy came out and said that the keys had lost their codes and had
to be taken back to the dealership. So I helped the guy push my car onto the
transporter, what a feeling pushing your own car! When I got the car to the
dealership they apologised and gave me a courtesy car, which turned out to be a
VW Polo SE-Design 1.2 TSI (90HP) 5-door. I had the Polo for two days and I started to
come around to the Polo. The car was quieter, quicker and had a better radio
than my UP! The only problem with this particular car was its worse fuel
economy. I could not get above 43mpg with this 1.2 TSI engine. After this I got
my car back and I drove it for a few months before I started thinking about
changing the car.





The Up! Black has been replaced by a Polo
R-Line 1.0 TSI (110HP) 3-door in white with convenience pack, reversing camera
and (two year) service plan. I have noticed on this forum that previous Up!
Owners that have bought the car when it first came out have also moved on to
Polo's. I was drawn to the Polo because it was quieter, quicker, no vehicle
excise duty to pay (£0 ""“ 99g/km) and in theory more economical (urban figure)
than the UP! but I will see in the future. Also I am particular fond of the three-cylinder
engine. Anyone who is looking for a new car in the near future, please remember
the Chancellor of the Exchequer is changing the vehicle excise duty from April
2017 to £140, unless you drive a car emitting 0g/km e.g. e-UP!





I have had my ups and downs with the car
but I still think it has been a great experience owning and I would recommend
to people who are looking for a car from the city car class category the UP!





I will keep checking in on the forum but I
have noticed that there are quite a few Polo forums. Do you recommend a
particular Polo forum site that I should go to?


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Try UK-POLOS.NET
There is some useful info.in there but perhaps not as active as the up site.
 

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Very informative. Thanks for the review. Good luck with the Polo.
 

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Hey , great write up!:)

Had my move up since october , have went the opposite way , polo 6n to UP! Have had reverse niggles also , and the clutch pedal clicks every now and again , but overall very pleased.

Club polo is good , was in it when had my 97 polo.


Mark.
 

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Reverse selection is simply because no synchromesh in reverse. If gears spinning on shafts when reverse is attempted to be engaged it won't go in. A simple depression of the clutch again will stop this spinning and reverse gear selection is easy. That is why starting procedure is always to depress clutch before starting, this keeps all gear cogs stationary within the box. If clutch is not depressed the gears will spin on starting making reverse difficult if not impossible to engage because on lack of synchromesh in reverse.
Hope this resolves the many concernes throughout this forum about this issue which is often reported as a fault when it is simply a matter of not following manufacturer's instructions on starting.
 

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Queensmessenger said:
Reverse selection is simply because no synchromesh in reverse. If gears spinning on shafts when reverse is attempted to be engaged it won't go in. A simple depression of the clutch again will stop this spinning and reverse gear selection is easy. That is why starting procedure is always to depress clutch before starting, this keeps all gear cogs stationary within the box. If clutch is not depressed the gears will spin on starting making reverse difficult if not impossible to engage because on lack of synchromesh in reverse.
Hope this resolves the many concernes throughout this forum about this issue which is often reported as a fault when it is simply a matter of not following manufacturer's instructions on starting.

This! I've had the odd difficulty selecting reverse on all cars I've owned and the standard procedure is to go back into neutral, lift clutch momentarily then dip again and reselect reverse. If you do it quick enough there's a little crunch due to the mismatch in speeds due to lack of synchro.

Nuances like this are why I wish imparting a small amount of technical knowledge would be part of an ADI's lessons and would be assessed during driving tests. It would also stop people ramming the gearbox into first when pulling up to junctions, which is why older cars are a nightmare to get into first as the synchros are completely shot!

Moving on, I felt the review was good but the owner seems to have been a bit unlucky, especially with having the instrument cluster replaced! Brake discs warping seems to be a general issue, but could possibly be due to the long gearing and almost total lack of engine braking. Possibly because of only having three cylinders but I've just generally found engine braking on the UP to be very weak.
 

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In regards reverse , of course its a design flaw , no other car i have driven needs to be put in neutral then back into reverse to operate!:) mk1 up! was built to a cost , and this is one of the side effects (mk2 doesn't have them , from feedback) if it was a synchro issue then it would be well known on all cars ?


Mark.
 

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OK maybe an omission on VW's part but it was done deliberately to keep costs down so cannot argue with that. Just a matter of driving technique. I would do not buy this car if what you are after is slick racing gear changes and blistering accelaration.
 

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Great review, I'm looking at the end of my PCP in May and thinking hard about either paying the balloon payment of Euro 5350 or changing to a Hyundai i10. I've had no problems whatsoever with the Up! after 10,000 km of city start/stop driving and don't really like the interior of the new Up!So do I risk keeping the car and coughing up for a few expected niggles like warped discs?
 

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Today I went to the local VW showroom, unfortunately no Up! move in stock, ' you have to wait, we may have one in a couple of weeks', not even 'I'll look at the stock on the computer to see if I can source one for you'Drove across the road to Hyundai showroom, plenty in stock but wanted E9,000 plus my car, as I owe E5,350 final PCP payment on it as well I couldn't justify spending E14,350 plus my car on a E15,500 i10.
I'll pay the final payment in May and keep the car for a few more years,money saved can go towards university fees for the firstborn child (or another motorbike)
 
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