There are two massive shifts happening in the automotive world: the shift toward electric vehicles, and the shift to self-driving vehicles. The former has proven much easier to accomplish than the latter, and industry giants such as Tesla and Volkswagen are still grappling with the finer details of self-driving cars. Tesla last week set a date for its self-driving subscription that will be available on cars like the Model S. Volvo has just announced that it is teaming with China's DiDi Autonomous Driving to further develop its car's capabilities. The big news out of Europe however is that VW's new Polo will be one of the first in its class to offer partly automated driving, giving it a major advantage over its competition.
Despite not being sold in the US, the VW Polo is one of the world's most successful compact cars, having sold more than 18 million units. That means every time an updated version comes out, it's a pretty big deal. The new Polo is being offered with tech that has previously only been offered higher up in its product range. Features such as new IQ.LIGHT LED matrix headlights and IQ.DRIVE Travel Assist are some of the headline grabbers. The available IQ.DRIVE Travel Assist system combines adaptive cruise control and lane-control assistance (standard on all new Polos) to offer "partly automated driving" as Volkswagen puts it.
Not only is this little Volkswagen able to drive itself around (kinda), but it also comes packed with premium features that go above and beyond what you'd expect to find in a compact hatchback. The available 10.25-inch Digital Cockpit Pro display is one of the largest in class, and VW's Ready2Discover Infotainment system also features prominently. Volkswagen currently sells nearly a dozen models on US soil, including the all-electric ID.4, but unfortunately, the Polo isn't one of them. Pre-sales of the new car start in May.