The 2017 Frankfurt motor show saw Volkswagen show its 6th-gen Polo. The hatchback is based on the MQB A0 platform and is significantly larger than its predecessor that was underpinned by the older PQ25 platform. VW’s new Polo measures 4,053mm in length, 1,751mm in thickness and 1,446mm in height, with a wheelbase measuring in at 2,564mm. This represents an increase of 81mm in length, 63mm in width, 7mm in height and 9mm in the wheelbase, compared to the fifth-gen model that is on sale in India. Boot volume has also enlarged by 71 litres to 351 litres. While, internationally, the older model was offered in three- and five-door variants, the new Polo will only be available as a five-door model. The new hatchback is visually alike to the PQ25-based Polo but gets a distinctive swage line graphic that delivers extra structure to the bodywork in an area above the door handles.
For global markets, the new Polo will be sold in six different trim lines – Trendline, Comfortline and Highline trims, a special Beats edition with an upgraded sound system, and an R-line trim featuring re-profiled bumpers, standard 16-inch alloy wheels and dark exterior elements among other exceptional touches. A top-spec GTI variant, which differentiates itself with uniquely styled bumpers, a honeycomb grille insert, red highlights within the headlamps, 17-inch alloy wheels, a rear spoiler atop the tailgate, LED tail lamps and dual-chromed tailpipes, will also be on offer.
The insides of the hatchback are roomier, with claimed increases of 15mm in front headroom and 30mm in rear headroom. The cabin has also been redesigned and now features a new dashboard with a new steering wheel and more contemporary switchgear. Analogue instruments remain standard, though Volkswagen’s Active Info Display digital tools along with a wide number of connectivity functions, containing a wireless smartphone charging pad and keyless access, are offered as options. Volkswagen confirmed that the Polo will be offered in international markets, with a choice of four petrol engines and a sole diesel one in varying states of tune. All motors will feature the stop/start function and brake energy recuperation for better fuel proficiency.
The petrol motors include the naturally aspirated, 1.0-litre, three-cylinder unit in a 65hp or 75hp state of tune, a turbocharged 1.0-litre, three-cylinder mill in 95hp or 115hp states of tune, a new 150hp, 1.5-litre, four-cylinder turbocharged motor and the range-topping 200hp, 2.0-litre, turbocharged, four-cylinder that will only be offered on the Polo GTI. The 1.6-litre, four-cylinder turbo-diesel engine delivers either 81hp or 96hp, depending on the variant. Transmission options include a five-speed manual, a six-speed manual and a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox. All of them will transfer power exclusively to the front wheels despite the MQB platform being four-wheel-drive capable. While there is no news about the new Polo coming to India, VW’s sister brand Skoda is currently developing a low-cost ‘Eco’ platform that is based on the MQB one. Both brands will share this new platform. This development is timely considering the alliance between Tata, Skoda and VW to jointly develop a low-cost platform using the Indian automaker’s upcoming Advanced Modular Platform (AMP) fizzled.