WHAT WE SAID

FIRST DRIVE

Evo - - MARKET -

‘ Give it the gun and you are im­me­di­ately struck by the Lupo’s lusty mid- range re­sponse. A peak torque fig­ure of 112lb ft doesn’t sound much, but when it ar­rives at 3000rpm it en­dows VW’S tid­dler with surg­ing low- rev flex­i­bil­ity that melds cleanly with the zing of top- end power. Sadly the 16- valve mo­tor is some­what charm­less – not that the Lupo’s B- road pace seems to suf­fer.

‘ No mat­ter how twisty the road, the Lupo GTI hits 80mph in no time and par­ries awk­ward bumps, dips and crests with aplomb. There’s more body­roll than you might ex­pect, but the tena­cious way it re­sists un­der­steer is ad­mirable. And even if you do over­cook things, it won’t bite you with an arm­ful of lift- off over­steer. Strong wet- road trac­tion is fi­nal con­fir­ma­tion that the chas­sis is a good ’ un.

‘ The Lupo GTI is a very strong, highly de­sir­able con­tender within the baby hot hatch sec­tor. It also wears the GTI badge more con­vinc­ingly than any VW hatch­back since the Mk2 Golf. High praise in­deed.’ – Driven, evo 028

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