The updated Volkswagen Polo has been revealed ahead of its official public debut at the Geneva motor show in March.

Visually, the mid-life facelift of the popular supermini has seen only subtle enhancements, with a new grille design and chrome accents in the lower front bumper. Five new wheel designs are now available, as well as full LED headlights as an optional extra.

The interior is similarly tweaked, with a revised centre console arrangement, and new instruments and steering wheel the only changes.

However, under the skin, the levels of on-board technology have grown, with Volkswagen aiming to reinforce the Polo’s more upmarket positioning compared to popular rivals the Ford Fiesta and Vauxhall Corsa.

Highlights of the new tech include new safety gadgets such as Automatic Post-Collision Braking, which will halt the car after an impact, reducing the likelihood of further collisions.

Automatic cruise control and City Emergency Braking – which automatically stops the car at low speeds in the event of an impending collision – will also be available as options.

Further technical highlights include a new selectable sports suspension option and an improved infotainment touch screen, which can recognise swiping movements in the same way as a smartphone.

The Polo is also being offered with a new range of engines, which Volkswagen claims are up to 21 per cent more fuel efficient than the outgoing units.

Petrol models use new three- and four-cylinder units ranging from 1.0-litre to 1.4-litre in size and 59-148bhp.

Diesels are fitted with a three-cylinder 1.4-litre motor, available in 74bhp and 89bhp guises.

The current super-frugal Bluemotion diesel model is to get a petrol replacement. Volkswagen claims the three-cylinder 1.0-litre model is capable of 68.9mpg, and emits a road-tax busting 94g/km CO2.

Full price and specification details for the new Polo will be confirmed when UK order books open in April, with the first customer cars expected for delivery in July.

If you can’t wait that long, you can always search for a used Volkswagen Polo here.

Daljinder Nagra


January 29, 2014