VW is counting on a larger, technology-packed Polo model to revive its sluggish sales in the core European market where the brand’s deliveries slid 0.2 percent in the January-to-May period to 726,000 cars.
The new Polo, priced from 12,975 euros (USDS14,500) and due to hit showrooms in October, will be the main volume product VW launches this year, preceding the all-new T-Roc, a Golf-sized SUV, which is due out later this year.
A VW spokesman declined to specify the new Polo’s on-road nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions and whether they met EU targets, saying VW at this point only had emissions estimates for the model which cannot be disclosed.
The advent of the new Polo will intensify the struggle for dominance in Europe’s crowded subcompact segment where the VW model is going up against a redesigned Ford Fiesta and an upgraded Renault Clio, all vying for the top spot.
Much more interior space, yet still compact outside
The sixth generation Volkswagen Polo has grown, making it larger than its predecessor in all of its dimensions. This has resulted in much more interior space and a significantly increased boot volume, which has grown from 280 to 351 litres. Nonetheless, it is still a snappy compact car on the outside. It is enlightening to compare this car to the fourth generation Golf (built until 2003) which has sold in the millions. It shows that the Polo has adapted to people who have grown, but also that it utilises its enclosed space even more effectively. The new Polo, with its length of 4,053 mm, is slightly shorter than the fourth generation Golf, but it surpasses that Golf when it comes to its wheelbase (53 mm longer) and space for the driver, passengers and luggage (21 litres more).
The positive effects of the modular transverse matrix (MQB) on the car’s proportions, and thereby on its design, are very significant. Klaus Bischoff, Head of Design for the Volkswagen Brand, explains: “The much better proportions create the framework for a grown-up, confident appearance of the sixth generation Volkswagen Polo – charismatic, progressive, contemporary and friendly. We have systematically capitalised on this realignment of dimensions to build a compelling compact car.” The project targets, as defined by Bischoff: All Polo models should be made more sporty, more powerful, fresher, more masculine and more charismatic. Looking at the new Polo, the Head of Design sums it up: “This Volkswagen can immediately be made out as the original of its class, but also as a completely new generation. A Volkswagen Polo with an expressive design which makes the compact – now as a four-door only – sportier, cleaner and unique within the brand range. This is a car that fits in perfectly with our times – both visually and technologically.”
Volkswagen Polo GTI. This sporty top model will now be powered by a 2.0-litre TSI with an output of 147 kW / 200 PS (previous model: 1.8 TSI with 141 kW / 192 PS). Matching the engine’s high output are the standard sport chassis and the optional Sport Select chassis. At the front, this most powerful Polo stands out by virtue of such features as a specially designed bumper with integrated spoiler lip and fog lights as standard. Typical GTI insignia at the front include the red stripe on the radiator grille, honeycomb air vent screens and, of course, the GTI badge. An exclusive feature offered in the GTI: optional LED headlights with a red winglet; stylistically they are extensions of the red stripe of the radiator grille. At the rear, the Volkswagen Polo GTI sports a large roof spoiler in high-gloss black (underside: black matt), a diffuser in the bumper, GTI-specific dual tailpipes (left side), LED tail lights and, again, the GTI badge. On the sides, GTI characteristics include standard 17-inch alloy wheels (18-inch optional), side sill extensions and brake calipers that are painted red. In the interior, the 200-PS Polo also offers unique characteristics that are typical of a GTI. They include top sport seats with the legendary ‘Clark’ tartan pattern, a multifunction leather-trimmed sport steering wheel with red stitching, rooflining and roof pillars in black and a GTI gear shift grip. Also included as standard: ambient lighting.
14 exterior colours
Everything becomes more colourful and personalised in new VW Polo with a large range of fresh new colours (a total of 14 exterior colours are available) and twelve wheels (14- to 18-inch, some painted in contrasting colour), dashpads in 13 different decors, two interior trim versions and eleven different seat covers.
Comfort & convenience features from the Golf class
The Polo can be further personalised and upgraded to satisfy individual budgets and tastes. New in the options programme are features such as light-intense full-LED headlights, LED daytime running lights, LED tail lights, ‘Air Care Climatronic’ system with air quality sensor and allergen filter, wireless charging for smartphones (optional inductive aerial connection) and one of the largest panoramic roofs in its class (opening is 10 mm wider and 20 mm longer than before). Another available option: the Sport Select running gear with active dampers. The new Polo can be personalised to create an almost unique car by choosing from different trim lines, colours, interiors, wheels and optional features. These options may also be combined with a broad range of highly efficient engines.
Market launch in 2017
The new Volkswagen Polo will arrive on the markets of most European countries in 2017, and it will launch successively with nine Euro-6 engines. The power range at market launch: 48 kW / 65 PS to 110 kW / 150 PS. For the first time, the Polo is available with a natural gas engine: the newly developed 1.0 TGI with an output of 66 kW / 90 PS. Four petrol and two diesel engines are also available. The petrol engines range from the 1.0 MPI with 65 PS to the brand new 1.5 TSI EVO with cylinder deactivation (ACT) and 150 PS. The Polo is launching with diesel versions (TDI) with outputs of 59 KW / 80 PS and 70 kW / 95 PS. All of these models are equipped with a stop-start system and a regenerative braking mode. Starting from an output of 70 kW, all engines may be combined with a dual clutch gearbox (DSG). The GTI rounds out the range of the Volkswagen Polo family as a highlight. As previously noted, the TSI in the Polo GTI develops an output of 147 kW / 200 PS.