Covers come off the new Volkswagen Polo
16 June 2017
Author: Debbie Wood
Volkswagen has revealed the next generation of its Polo hatchback, which is set to go on sale in the autumn, with first deliveries expected to start in January 2018.
It's the second car to be built on VW's new small car platform - following just behind the Seat Ibiza launched a few months ago - and is currently the firm's second-biggest-selling model here in the UK; in fact one in four VWs (including commercial vehicles) sold here last year was badged Polo - so this next car has some pretty big shoes to fill.
And it seems 'big' is the buzz word for this latest iteration. It's the roomiest Polo to date with a wheelbase that is 94mm longer, plus it showcases a 25% bigger boot than the Mk5, measuring in at 351 litres.
Now available as a five-door only, the sixth-generation Polo will be offered with both petrol and diesel powertrains, while no electric or plug-in version is planned for the immediate future. Among the engines is a new 150hp 1.5-litre petrol, seen first in the Golf, and a powerful 200hp 2.0-litre petrol exclusive to the GTI model.
Gearbox choices include a five- or six-speed manual or a new seven-speed DSG automatic transmission available on more powerful engine options.
Design wise, it's very much business as usual here. As with the Golf, VW preferred not to stray too far from a proven formula; small tweaks include some new LED lights and an enhanced grille design.
Although some will struggle to notice the difference from the outside, slip behind the wheel of the new Polo and the changes are clear to see. The cabin gets a materials upgrade and a more simplistic and modern dashboard layout, while a larger infotainment screen is also fitted. The supermini also provides the debut for VW's second-generation digital cockpit system - Active Info Display - which now offers crisper graphics and is simpler to use, with just one button needed on the steering wheel to scroll through the various functions.
There's an impressive amount of advanced tech on offer in this latest model, too. Most filters down from its Passat and Golf stablemates, some of which is relatively rare in the supermini class. Kit highlights include emergency braking with a new pedestrian monitoring function, adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring and a front assist system to help when pulling out of junctions or parking spaces if visibility is restricted.
Exact trim details are yet to be confirmed but we're not expecting VW to stray too far from how the current car is structured. Pricing is also yet to be announced but a small increase of around £500 across the range is predicted.