Volkswagen’s crossover offensive will include a Juke-fighting model

Putting an end to a long-standing rumor, Volkswagen has confirmed it is in the early stages of developing a crossover based on the sub-Golf Polo hatchback that is sold in Europe and in a number of other global markets.

“In the future we will have a minimum of one SUV in each segment – from the top-line SUV to MQB-based models and a number of derivatives including a Golf SUV and a Polo SUV,” revealed Volkswagen board member Dr. Heinz-Jakob Neuser in an interview with British magazine Auto Express.

Aimed at the Nissan Juke and the Honda HR-V, the yet-unnamed Polo-based crossover will slot beneath the next-gen Tiguan. Sources close to Volkswagen have revealed that the crossover will be noticeably inspired by the well-received T-Roc concept (pictured) that bowed in Geneva last year but its design will be toned down, it will lose the removable roof panel and it will gain an extra set of doors.

Like the Polo, the compact crossover will be available with three- and four-cylinder gasoline- and diesel-burning engines.  Buyers will be asked to choose between a manual and a dual-clutch automatic gearbox, but Auto Express speculates that the company’s 4Motion four-wheel drive system will not be offered.

Volkswagen’s upcoming Polo-based crossover is expected to debut as a thinly-veiled concept at a major auto show either late this year or early next year. Don’t look for it to arrive in the United States, however, as Neuser hinted that it is being primarily developed for Europe, China and Latin America.

Volkswagen’s SEAT and Škoda divisions will get their owns version of the compact crossover before the end of the decade, allowing the Wolfsburg-based to benefit from economies of scale.