When Volkswagen showed the Open-Air Concept C Cabrio-Coupe at the 2004 Geneva Auto Show, VW fans immediately clamored for it to go into production. Well their wish has been granted, with the arrival of the 2007 Eos. It’s Volkswagen’s most innovative convertible ever. And this new hard-top drop-top is fun, even when there is no sun. While fun in the sun is the primary goal, a hard-top drop-top like the 2007 Volkswagen Eos is a true four-season car. That’s why VW calls Eos their first Coupe-Sun-Roof-Convertible.
And, Eos is very much about its complex CSC top. When up, it’s as solid and quiet as most coupes. But, being named after the Greek Goddess of the Dawn, letting the sun shine in is key, starting with a glass front panel that is actually an unusually large tilt and slide sunroof. If however you desire the total open-air experience, hit a single switch, and the five-section structure begins its stacking and folding retreat.
The extra long side arms not only support the sunroof but allow for a more upright windshield so getting in is less of a head banging affair. The top sandwich disappears neatly into the trunk. But, as you might expect, that does cut into cargo room which is reduced from a small 10.5 cubic feet to a minimal 6.6 cubic feet. So, this is one 2+2 convertible where the backseat will be more likely be used for luggage than people. Whether the top is open or closed, the mostly Golf-V based Eos has a cute, sporty, look that’s 100 percent Euro.
The 101.5-inch wheelbase is the same as the Rabbit compact. Yet the Eos is almost 8-inches longer. Plus 17-inch alloy wheels, to replace the standard 16-inchers.
The standard Eos engine, and the one in our test car, is the GTI’s 2.0-liter turbo 4-cylinder rated at 200 horsepower and 207 pound-feet of torque. Government fuel economy ratings for the 4-clyinder manual are 23 city/32 highway. We averaged a very respectable 27 miles-per-gallon of premium gas.
Also available is the R32’s narrow-angle 3.2-liter V6. In the Eos it delivers 250 horsepower and 235 pound-feet of torque. A 6-speed manual is standard while a 6-speed double-clutch Tiptronic automatic is optional for the turbo-4, and standard with the V6.
It ran a very respectable 0-to-60 time of 7.3 seconds in our manual Trans Eos. The quarter mile ended in 15.7 seconds at 95 miles-per-hour. The 2-liter is quite strong. Frankly, the turbo-4 is so flexible we think spending money for the V6 is a waste. The 6-speed manual is a touch on the rubbery side, but requires little effort and snaps positively into each gear.
For handling hardware, the Eos is typical modern VW, MacPherson struts up front, a 4-link independent setup in the rear, with standard electronic stability control. Our car came with a pricey Sport Package which includes stiffer shocks and thicker stabilizer bars. With the Sport Package, the Eos is firmer than a Rabbit or Passat, but still delivers a very comfortable ride. We did notice a bit of boom through the body, and a slight flex as well, but only over really nasty bumps.
The Eos also exhibits the VW’s close attention to aerodynamic detail, with little top-down wind buffeting. On our handling course we noted considerable body roll as the heavy top makes for a high center or gravity. Yet Eos still changes direction promptly, although more steering feel would be welcomed. Eos brakes are 4-wheel discs with ABS. They stopped our car from 60 in a good average of 125 feet, with very good stability.
Volkswagen cabins are known for comfort, convenience, and safety, and the Eos cabin offers plenty of all three, in a premium-look setting. Open the door and you’ll find supportive bucket seats. Our 2.0T test car also had leather upholstery as part of the Sport Package. Available is a DVD navigation system with a 6-disc CD changer in the center console.
Standard safety includes a combination head protecting/side impact airbag system, and rollover protection bars that deploy from behind the rear seat head restraints.
Eos joins the Pontiac G6 convertible as a hardtop convertible that costs no more than many soft-tops, starting at $28,620. The well-equipped 2.0T jumps to $30,620, and the top line 3.2L goes for $37,480.
But no matter what trim level, all versions of the Eos deliver the best of both hard-top and soft-top. And so much driving fun that you won’t need ole sol for a sunny disposition.
Engine: 2.0-Liter Turbo 4-Cylinder
Torque: 207 Lb Feet
0-60 MPH: 7.3 Seconds
1/4 Mile: 15.7 Seconds @ 95 MPH
60-0 MPH: 125 Feet
EPA: 23 MPG City/ 32 MPG Highway
Mixed Loop: 27 MPG