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Say Hello To The New Volkswagen Polo GTI

Reveal / 19 Comments

The Volkswagen Polo has grown up.

Volkswagen has revealed the brand-new Polo sub-compact at an event in Germany. Available in many guises, of course, enthusiasts will be most interested in the range-topping GTI Polo, which will be available at launch alongside four other variants. Powered by a 2.0-liter turbo, it packs an impressive 197 hp and a 0-60 mph time of 6.7 seconds, as well as all the hallmarks we've come to expect from GTI models including a roof-mounted spoiler, GTI-specific bumpers and of course retro-inspired tartan seats.

Built on Volkswagen's MQB A0 platform, the new Polo doesn't look drastically different, but it has been subtly refined to make it appear sportier and more grown up than its predecessor. Measuring 4,053 mm long, it's the largest Polo yet which makes it slightly smaller than the fourth-generation Golf, but it has a longer wheelbase to provide a more spacious interior and a larger trunk offering 351 liters of capacity. "The Polo is a young, fresh car. It combines charisma with strong technology," Volkswagen's Dr Herbert Diess said. "No other car offers so much space for its size. This makes our Polo the number one compact car, and it will remain number one."

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Not only is it larger, it's more technically advanced, too. As standard, the new Polo is equipped with an array of driver assistance features you would normally find in its bigger brothers, including a speed limiter, a Front Assist area monitoring system with City Emergency Braking and Pedestrian Monitoring. In addition, the new Polo can be speced with Active Cruise Control, Blind Spot Detection with Rear Traffic Alert and Park Assist. The interior has been radically redesigned with a cleaner look that's far more inviting than before thanks to its modernized dashboard sporting a digital instrument display panel and 8-inch infotainment screen.

Nine engine options will be available, starting with a 1.0-liter gasoline unit that produces 65 hp and the new 1.5-liter TSI with cylinder deactivation and 150 hp. Two 1.6-liter diesel engines will also be available producing 80 hp and 95 hp. Joining the Trendline, Comfortline and Highline trim options is the new R-Line and a special edition Beats version with 16-inch alloys, sports seats, and a 300-watt sound system. The customization options are extensive, with a choice of 14 exterior colors, 12 wheels, 13 different dashboard decorations, two interior trim options and 11 different seat covers. Deliveries will start next year in Europe, with prices starting at 12,975 Euros in Germany. No word on a US release, sadly.