2018 Volkswagen T-Roc R spy shots

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Volkswagen’s T-Roc was only revealed in August but engineers are already out testing a new high-performance version of the compact SUV.

Spotted at the Nürburgring this week was a T-Roc prototype sporting the same quad-exhaust tip design of the Volkswagen Golf R. The engine note also matched the noise of the popular hot hatch.

This suggests VW is cooking up a fiery T-Roc R, something the German automaker’s execs have been hinting at. We’re not expecting a GTI badge as VW says those famous letters are reserved for hatchbacks only.

The Golf R’s engine is a 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-4 delivering 305 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque in its latest guise. The engine is paired to a 7-speed dual-clutch transmission and all-wheel drive in the Golf R, and VW is likely to use a similar combo for any T-Roc R.

2018 Volkswagen T-Roc R spy shots - Image via S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

2018 Volkswagen T-Roc R spy shots - Image via S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

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The prototype was sporting a new front fascia with enlarged intakes and a new grille treatment. A new fascia is also found at the rear. It incorporates a small diffuser insert between the separate pairs of exhaust tips.

Given the lack of camouflage, the debut of the hotter T-Roc can’t be far. An appearance at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show next March is a safe bet.

A VW spokesman wasn’t willing to comment on the vehicle, however.

Sadly, we won’t see it in the United States as the T-Roc is off-limits for our market. Instead, we’re expecting VW to bring over a subcompact SUV dubbed the T-Cross sometime next year.

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