Deciding which supermini to go for has never been harder. It seems more and more manufacturers are producing high quality small runabouts than ever before, but if you want one that's at the top of its game, then the VW Polo is well worth considering.
The Polo is a very grown up supermini – whether you go for the three or five door version it's all very conservative. Think of it more like a baby Golf than a bigger Fox, and you get the idea.
It’s not what you’d call a funky runabout, not in the same style as the Ford Fiesta or Renault Clio, but sit behind the wheel and you could be forgiven for thinking you're in a Golf. The three-spoke steering wheel and entertainment system is virtually identical to the one in its bigger brother. That’s no bad thing; it's simple to use and neatly positioned, and the dash has a very premium feel to it with soft-touch materials.
There’s enough space for five and with all seats upright the boot has a respectable 280 litres of space – not quite the best in class, but it can be expanded to 952 litres thanks to the fold-flat seats.
There’s a large selection of engines to choose from including an eco-friendly blue motion model diesel that will will return over 80mpg, right through to a 1.8-litre turbo petrol GTi hot hatch version. The pick of the range, though, is the 1.2 litre TSI as it's capable in all conditions and is easy on the fuel.
On the road, the Polo has always been less engaging than the likes of the Ford Fiesta, mainly because of its rather lifeless steering. It is, however, extremely refined and composed through the bends.There's a choice of manual or automatic gearboxes – opt for the latter and you wont be disappointed by the DSG system, which shifts through the gears smoothly and is one of the best around.
But what do a group of young drivers think of the Volkswagen Polo?