Sue Cooke Checks out the New VW Polo

”As my thoughts turn to Summer holidays in the UK, I begin to list the new cars which I would like to road test.  My list has to include those promising comfort, practicality and economy for long journeys. So, what better than a Volkswagen.  But what a choice this year!

VW’s ongoing new car launches shift into top gear with three important new models which have arrived on UK roads within a month of each other.  The new T-Roc compact SUV, the new Tiguan Allspace seven seat SUV and the new Polo supermini.

In the UK, the sixth generation Polo is the second best-selling car in the VW range, with sales of 47,855 in 2017. The design of the Polo has become more masculine and personalisation is elevated to 14 bold exterior colours; seven different dashpad decors; two interior trim versions and eleven different seat cover options.

poloIt is available in a five-door body style only, but personally I much prefer a five door.  It’s so much easier to let friends in and out unless you like solo driving.

I clock up a lot of miles driving from one car launch to the other but while road testing the new Polo, it has all been in the utmost comfort, which is surprising for a small car.   Also surprising is the pioneering suite of intelligent driver assistance and connectivity features which VW brings to the small car segment.  There is a new dashboard and cockpit layout and the second generation, Active Info Display, makes its global debut. This 10.5-inch high resolution TFT dash display has customisable menus and information.

The quality interior is quite roomy and taller colleagues didn’t complain about head or leg room.  The whole cabin seems to come alive at night when the headlights are switched on and the stylish dashboard lights up with red needles and blue illumination, giving a warm cosy feel.    There are also lots of useful storage areas.

Technology features Front Assist, Blind Spot Detection, ACC Adaptive Cruise Control and a Stop & Go function – a first for a car with a manual handbrake.

There is a variety of efficient turbocharged engine options: five petrol engines (TSI) and two diesels (TDI).  All are equipped with a stop-start system and a regenerative braking mode.  In the UK, the best-seller in the new range is likely to be an SE specification 1.0-litre 95 PS petrol-engine (TSI) manual and 95% of sales are expected to be petrol.

poloThe Polo with the most powerful and largest engine is the GTI with a 200 PS 2.0 TSI petrol powerplant which will debut in the UK around now (mid 2018). All of the TSI and TDI engines with a power output of 95 PS or more can be configured with a highly efficient seven-speed DSG.

New Polos are all front-wheel drive, and full gearbox options are five-speed or six-speed manual, or six-speed or the seven-speed DSG.

It must be difficult to improve on a car which is already a best seller but as the holiday season arrives, the new VW Polo, with its gorgeous new design, a long list of standard equipment, safety features and comfort for longer journeys, is a definite winner.”

Facts at a Glance

Model: VW Polo 5 door

Price: £15,135 otr

Engine:  1litre TSI 95 PS 5 speed manual

Performance: 0-62 mph in 10.8 seconds and on to a top speed of 116mph

CO2 emissions: 101g/km

Combined fuel consumption:  62.8 mpg