Big up­grade for 2018 Polo

More tech, more room and more choice. By CJ Hub­bard

CAR (UK) - - Insider -

YOU MAY HAVE heard there’s an all-new Ford Fi­esta on sale (see page 100). Now meet the car that’s go­ing all out to steal its lunch money – the sixth-gen­er­a­tion VW Polo.

We know what you’re think­ing: the Polo’s al­ways been Œine but dull, tra­di­tion­ally styled like a minia­turised Golf with­out the per­son­al­ity. Not this time.

On the out­side a dis­tinc­tive dou­ble swage line im­me­di­ately sets it apart from Mk7.5 big brother, while the over­all pro­por­tions seem more Audi than VW. Com­pared to the old Polo, the new car is slightly lower (by 7mm) but con­sid­er­ably longer (81mm) and signiŒicantly wider (69mm). Also note the wheel­base, which grows 94mm for more room and im­proved ride qual­ity. The 351-litre boot is 25% big­ger.

This – plus a host of grown-up equip­ment – is all made pos­si­ble by the VW Group’s MQB A0 plat­form, as al­ready used on the lat­est Seat Ibiza.

En­gine choice com­prises two 1.6-litre diesels and six petrols with max­i­mum power out­puts rang­ing from 59bhp via a nat­u­rally as­pi­rated 1.0-litre through to 197bhp in the 2.0-litre turbo GTI.

This isn’t any quicker – VW boss Herbert Diess told us at the pre­view that the 0¤62mph time would be 6.7sec – but is ‘much more GTI than be­fore’ to drive. There’s a lookey-likey R-line model if you don’t want the in­surance has­sle; you could pair it with the ex­citable 148bhp 1.5 TSI Evo mo­tor for a con­vinc­ing fun-with-fu­ele­con­omy combo.

Whichever Polo takes your fancy, it’s the in­te­rior that’ll seal the deal. The qual­ity we ex­pected, the colour and panache we did not – with a choice of 13 di§er­ent ‘dash­pads’ and such slickly in­te­grated touch­screen me­dia sys­tems it in­stantly feels a gen­er­a­tion ahead of ev­ery ri­val. It even de­buts the VW Group’s sec­ond-gen­er­a­tion dig­i­tal dial pack, al­beit op­tion­ally.

Ex­pect a £500 price rise over the cur­rent Polo when the or­der books open in Oc­to­ber, but you won’t ac­tu­ally get the car un­til Jan­uary 2018.

GTI ver­sion was un­veiled along with the rest of the range. We’re in!

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