Even in its base 1.2-litre TSI form, the Yeti is a competent companion. The car is easy to drive in most conditions, and doesn't overburdened its small petrol engine. 

Beyond 2000rpm there's a reasonable amount of torque, and the six-speed manual gearbox offers up a typically decent, lightly fettled shift action and well-spaced ratios. Overtaking is more laborious than elsewhere in the range, but by and large it makes for a well-mannered urbanite. 

Matt Prior

Matt Prior

Road test editor
The Yeti's entry-level engines are not as sluggish as the figures might suggest

However, it's not the most popular Yeti. That honour befalls the top-spec 2.0-litre TDI engine mated to the part time all-wheel drive system. The Haldex setup adds no perceptible weight to the transmission or clutch, and given that it defaults to front-wheel drive, isn't noticeably different to its cheaper sibling. 

The oil burner is significantly less effort though. It offers decent performance even when fully loaded which, allied to decent economy and CO2 figures, gives it appeal for anyone looking for a longer-legged workhorse. 

At the other end of the scale, the entry-level 108bhp 2.0-litre TDI engine is the best option if frugality really matters to you.

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Volkswagen's DSG 'box is available across the range, including the 1.2-litre TSI, and reduces driver work load even further at the expense of CO2 emissions - along with a smidge of driver involvment, which, as we'll see, is reasonably high for a crossover. 

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