The brand’s now omnipresent supermini, which in its previous five iterations has sold more than 14 million examples worldwide, is from today being offered in five-door only form and, in time, in seven generously specified trim levels.
The main focus of the new sixth generation Polo is a major increase in cabin and luggage space within larger external dimensions alongside the debut of new engines, sharper design, new ‘big car’ assistance systems, the application of a new generation of infotainment systems and the global debut of the second generation of Volkswagen’s Active Info Display.
The developments in Polo – which has found a home with more than 1.4 million drivers in the UK over the last 42 years – also reflect a new level for assistance systems in the supermini segment. Technologies such as City Emergency Braking with new Pedestrian Monitoring function, Adaptive Cruise Control, and Blind Spot Detection significantly improve safety.
The new Polo, which utilises Volkswagen Group’s MQB AO architecture, also showcases a charismatic design with more expressive features. The use of the MQB AO underpinnings offers the ability to create significantly more dynamic proportions with a long wheelbase, short body overhangs and a sporty ratio of its key dimensions. The new car is longer, wider, has a lower overall height but improved headroom versus its predecessor.
The exterior design has been made more powerful, charismatic and expressive, while the new Polo’s interior has been fundamentally renewed. Indeed this is a supermini interior without precedent as new Polo has been fully developed for the digital era. It is, for instance, the first car in its class to offer entirely digital instruments – showcasing a whole new generaton of Volkswagen’s Active Info Display as an option.
The instruments are arranged on the same viewing axis as the infotainment system, too, with new glass-encased eight-inch touchscreen units standard across the entire Polo range.
Bigger in every dimension but length than the Golf Mk IV – sold here until 2003 – the capacious new Polo offers a boot volume that has grown 25%, from 280 litres to 351 litres, and a wheelbase up by 94 mm compared with that of the previous car.
A variety of the latest TSI (petrol) and TDI (turbo diesel) engines power the new Polo. All are Euro VI compliant and the petrol line-up will, later in 2018, include the use of the new 1.5 TSI EVO petrol (150 PS) with ACT Active Cylinder Technology to deliver two-cylinder deactivation for increased efficiency and reduced emissions.
The six three- and four-cylinder petrol engines range from the naturally aspirated 1.0 MPI with 65 PS to the turbocharged 2.0 TSI with 200 PS. All petrol engines with up to 150 PS belong to the efficient EA211 engine family, while the 2.0 TSI engine comes from the third generation EA888 series notably also seen – in larger output forms – in the new Golf GTI, Golf GTI Performance and the range-topping Golf R. As a diesel the Polo will offer a choice of two 1.6 TDI engines whose outputs are 80 PS and 95 PS respectively. Both four-cylinder engines belong to the EA288 engine family and feature an SCR catalytic converter.
Regardless of fuel choice, all new Polo engines are equipped with a stop-start system and a regenerative braking mode, while any of the TSI and TDI powerplants with an output of 95 PS or more can be configured with a 6- or 7-speed DSG automatic gearbox, depending on engine choice. Alternative gearbox options include five- or six-speed manuals. At the start of orders today (3 October) a selection of engine, gearbox and trim combinations are available.
Help when you need it
The spectrum of assistance systems available in new Polo further democratises Volkswagen’s progress in technology with features such as Front Assist, Blind Spot Detection with Rear Traffic Alert, ACC Adaptive Cruise Control and Stop & Go function – a first for a car with a manual handbrake – available optionally, or as standard, depending on trim level.
New LED headlights replace all Xenon headlights on the sixth generation Polo, while LED daytime running lights are also available for the new car.
The optional Keyless Access locking and engine starting system, which is also new, can be specified to further improve convenience while Driving Profile Selection allows the choice of one of four programs: Eco, Sport, Normal and Individual, to tailor the Polo’s character to the driver’s precise need, and mood.
In the Eco driving mode, for instance, engine control, air conditioning and other auxiliary systems are regulated in a manner that ensures optimal fuel efficiency. In vehicles fitted with DSG, a coasting function can also be used with the Eco mode: if the driver releases the accelerator pedal – for example, on downhill stretches – the DSG disengages and the engine idles. In Sport mode, on the other hand, engine response and shift points of the DSG are configured to be more dynamic and, if specified, tuning of the adjustable dampers is modified.
Equipped to excel
Every new Polo contains a generous level of standard-fit equipment, in keeping with its position at the head of the supermini segment. Among the highlights, model-by-model, are:
Eight-inch composition media infotainment with DAB
Front Assist with pedestrian monitoring
Automatic headlamp activation with LED daytime running lights
15-inch Sassari alloy wheels
Car-Net App Connect with an additional USB port
Leather multi-function steering wheel
16-inch Torsby alloy wheels
Front fog lights with cornering function
Front and rear carpet mats
beats decal over the bonnet and roof (beats only)
65 per cent tinted windows from the B-pillar backwards (beats only)
Red Velvet dash pad (beats only)
300 watt beats sound system (beats only)
16-inch Las Minas alloy wheels
Front centre armrest
Discover Navigation (SEL only)
2-Zone climate control (SEL only)
Front and rear parking sensors
16-inch Sebring alloy wheels
65% tinted windows from the B-pillar backwards
Rear LED tail lights
R-Line exterior styled front and rear bumpers and black gloss spoiler
Stainless steel pedals
17-inch Parker alloy wheels
GTI styling including red brake calipers
Sports suspension lowered by approximately 15 mm
XDS electronic differential
17-inch Parker alloy wheels
65% tinted windows from the B-pillar backwards
Light and Sight pack
Active Info Display
Adaptive Cruise Control
Keyless entry with start-stop button
Meanwhile safety has remained a key consideration for Volkswagen engineers developing the new Polo.
The new car has more standard safety features than its predecessor, including Front Assist with Pedestrian Monitoring and City Emergency Braking. There are now also more airbags than ever before, too, with the addition of a curtain airbag system for front and rear passengers which is designed to protect the driver’s and passengers’ heads in the event of an accident.
That extra safety translates into improved ABI insurance group ratings, with the entry-level new Polo 1.0 65 PS 5-spd manual five-door now rated at Group 1E, the lowest grouping available.
Commenting on the arrival of new Polo Alison Jones, Director of Volkswagen in the UK, said: “Our roomy new supermini is packed with new technology. Put simply, the new Polo is bigger and better than ever before.
“It now offers more space inside for passengers and luggage, more advanced technology thanks to the new MQB AO architecture, more safety, more comfort, more convenience and more style than any previous version.
“Efficient engines, a fine balance of ride and handling characteristics, and great refinement complete the mix and, in my view, make Polo the clear choice in the ever-competitive supermini sector.“
For more details on the new Polo, together with brochures and pricing of the version available to order from today – and to use Volkswagen’s online configurator – please visit www.volkswagen.co.uk.