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Volkswagen Polo GTI Facelift First Drive

 

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Volkswagen Polo GTI Overview

Grand Touring Injection or GTI has served as the Volkswagen performance moniker for over 40 years now, with its first model, the Golf GTI widely credited with starting the ‘hot hatch’ segment. The car’s ensuing success meant that, pretty soon, other VW cars bore the GTI moniker, including the Polo. And that’s where India got its GTI introduction; in November 2016 Volkswagen launched the fifth-generation Polo GTI, imported in the three-door format. And now, with the Polo GTI moving into its sixth-generation MQB platform, we head to Spain to see just how much of a step ahead it is.

Volkswagen Polo GTI Style

To a layman, the GTI will pass of as a regular Polo because the overall body line and stance has been retained. However, there are many differences on the GTI. First of all, you get just 2 doors and the doors themselves are a bit longer now. The front fascia gets an aggressive look with the sharply styled bumper and the extremely well-detailed full LED headlamps which look terrific. The grille also gets a red strip which passes on to the headlamps. There is a lovely GTI badge and the honeycomb design on the grille looks killer. The side profile is neat and clean but you do get sportier 16-inch Salvador wheels. The rear gets dual exhaust pipes along with a black applique on the bumper. The shape of the tail lamps is unchanged but you get a lot more detailing with LED bulbs on the GTI.

Volkswagen Polo GTI Space

The Volkswagen Polo GTI interior has sporty front seats with enlarged bolster and height adjustment, while the rear seats offer a 60:40 fold function. The seat trim covers are finished in fabric ‘Clark’ with GTI signature red colour strips and stitching. There is a sporty flat-bottomed leather-wrapped multi-function steering wheel with ‘GTI’-inscribed red stitching and paddle shifters. The company engineers have provided a plethora of storage compartments in the hatch in the form of drawers under the front seats, sunglass, coins, card and pen holders inside the glove box, bottle holders in the front doors, map pockets at the back of the front seats, coat hooks at the rear, etc., to mention a few. The front centre console houses a 12 V outlet to charge your smartphone. It gets hill start assist, cooled glove box, start/stop system with generative braking, cruise control, climatronic air conditioning system and luggage compartment lighting. A music system with 6 speakers, and Aux-in, USB and Bluetooth connectivity is a standard feature on the hatch.

Volkswagen Polo GTI Performance

The 1.8-litre TSI unit in this car debuted in the Skoda Laura TSI and currently resides in the Octavia and Superb. In the GTI, however, it makes 12PS more and is a complete thriller! 192PS between 5,400rpm-6,200rpm and 250Nm of max torque between 1,250-5,300rpm are very impressive figures, but that’s just one side of the coin. It’s the way that power is delivered that makes this engine one of our favourites.

The power delivery is very crisp and linear. The tacho needle races to the redline, and there is no sudden surge as the boost kicks in. You expect to be shoved hard into the seat when you stamp on the accelerator pedal, but instead the car sprints ahead smoothly and keeps gathering pace at a very high rate. In fact, you have to be a bit cautious because the manner in which the car gathers pace is alarmingly deceptive. The speedo rises quickly in response to throttle inputs, and before you know it you are well past legal speeds. This is a seriously fast car, Vbox recorded 0-100kmph time of just 6.71 seconds, kind of fast! Volkswagen claims a top speed of 235kmph, and I’m confident this car will quite easily show that on the clocks.

Internationally, the car comes with the option of a 6-speed manual transmission and a 7-speed DSG. In India, however, we get the automatic transmission, and we aren’t complaining – the gearbox is an absolute gem. Shifts are precise and arrive just when you want them. Transitions through the gears are seamless, and you don’t feel any jerks during upshifts or downshifts. Select Sports mode and the shift points are moved to the redline. The gearbox is so good in this mode that the engine is never out of the meat of its powerband. For more info on Volkswagen Polo GT visit Midasedu

Shift to D and the motor calms down. The gearbox shifts still quickly and smoothly, but engine revs won’t get very high. But then again, this is the GTI, so response to throttle inputs are quick, even in this mode. Paddle shifts are standard, further boosting the involvement on a winding road.

Volkswagen Polo GTI Driving

The Volkswagen GTI has a precise steering but I would have liked the feedback to be slightly better. It is very precise though. The car stays planted at high speeds on straights but on roads with some uneven surfaces, there is a tad loss in composure. The suspension is also stiffly set which makes sure you get better body control while the ride quality gets affected slightly. However, the ride isn’t bad at all and the GTI still feels comfortable. Braking power is sharp thanks to the all 4 discs while the grip from the 215/45/16 tyres is also very good.

Volkswagen Polo GTI Safety

Volkswagen Polo GTI features disc brakes at the front as well as rear, of which calipers are painted in a bright red paint scheme. It gets an array of high-end safety systems, such as ESC, ABS, ASR, EDL and EDTC. The company is offering 6 airbags as standard equipment in the hatch. There are 3-point seat belts at the front with height adjustment and pretensioner. The rear seats have height adjustable L-shaped head restraints and 3-point seat belts. In addition, a park distance control feature is also available, which provides the driver an acoustic warning signal for obstacles at the front and rear.

Volkswagen Polo GTI Costin Chennai

Volkswagen Polo GT On Road Price is 10,97,517/- and Ex-showroom Price is 9,58,000/- in Chennai. Volkswagen Polo GT comes in 5 colours, namely Flash Red,Reflex Silver,Copper Orange,Carbon Steel,Candy White. Volkswagen Polo GT comes with FWD with 1197 CC Displacement and 4 Cylinders with Maximum Power 104 bhp@5000 rpm and Peak Torque 175 Nm@1500-4100 rpm DRIVE TRAIN FWD and reaches 100 KMPH at N/A . Volkswagen Polo GT comes with Automatic Transmission with FWD .View offers on Polo GT at Autozhop.

Volkswagen Polo GTI Conclusion

Actually, the question is ‘Will you be able to buy one?’ VW India is in a conundrum about launching the car here. The new GTI certainly has enough to justify a premium, compared to the current one, and it’s safe to say that it will certainly enjoy more attention. But with the Polo (and the GTI) now based on the new MQB platform, the question is: Do they import it, which would mean a high price, or delay the launch until the local MQB platform (MQB A0-IN) is developed? To maintain the continuity of the brand, VW could do both – begin with an import and then move to local assembly later.

So, if and when the Polo GTI does make it here, assuming it’s sensibly priced or you have really deep pockets, should you look at it? Yes, this is a hot hatch that deserves serious consideration. While it may look all too familiar, the interior is a step ahead of the previous one, it drives fast, the gearbox is super-quick and the handling is fun enough. This isn’t to say it’s a thrill-your- pants-off kind of ride; it’s actually quite rounded off to serve as a daily driver and the ample interior space, comfortable seats and decent equipment list will be a further draw.

So as things stand, the new Polo GTI’s got a lot going for it. VW just has to make sure it gets the pricing right, and, going by the brisk sales of the reduced price GTI, there’s a handy marker for that.

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Volkswagen Polo Facelift Review & Test Drive

Volkswagen Polo Overview

The new version of the Polo has been tweaked with some minor updates, specifically to the interiors. On the outside, it remains largely unchanged. It’s clear that buyers loved the car’s styling, as over the years, its design has remained largely unchanged. The interiors come with the same, fresh styling that features a dual-tone colour scheme, fabric upholstered seats and a silver centre console. The Polo is available with two petrol and one diesel engine with the latter being offered in two states of tune. View offers on Volkswagen Cars from Volkswagen dealers in Hyderabad at Autozhop

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Volkswagen Polo Style

To begin with, we start with the revised exteriors of the facelift version. The new Volkswagen Polo has added multiple minor changes on both the sides- the front and the back. In the front it gets a new pair of double beam headlight for a better vision. It also gets all new fog lights, which are bigger than the outgoing one. The design of the Volkswagen Polo is all about simplicity. The Volkswagen Polo looks stylish and appealing in its design. This makes it stay fresh in design for colours. Added on with it, the shiny and glossy colours that stands out.

Volkswagen Polo Space

Step inside and everything seems familiar here too with some kit which will call for applause like cruise control and rear AC vents while the car continues to lack essentials like keyless entry, push button start and even a reverse parking camera, it does get a nice touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and there are reverse parking sensors too. The car gets artificial leather seats and the piano black finishing in the centre console looks good too. However, space continues to be lacking at the rear (no legroom, big centre hump and no centre headrest) and although there are plenty of storage bins here (including one inside the front centre armrest), the cluster feels too dated now.

Volkswagen Polo Engine

Diesel:

The diesel engine is a 1.5-litre unit that plates up 90PS of power and 230Nm of torque. The motor offers great performance and driveability in the city and on the highway. More importantly, it’s better than the old 3-cylinder that originally powered the Polo. The 5-speed manual gearbox is easy to use with well defined gear gates and if you want a little more performance, the same engine is available in a higher state of tune (105PS/250Nm) in the Polo GT TDI.

Petrol:

While the diesel is good in both states of tune, the petrol is a tale of two extremes. The 1.2-litre, 3-cylinder MPI engine offers acceptable performance for city usage, but isn’t engaging on the highway and lacks refinement. With 75PS of power and 110Nm of torque available, it’s not as powerful as many of its rivals. The GT TSI, however, is one of the most popular performance hatchbacks in India. The turbocharged 4-cylinder mill produces 105PS of power and 175Nm of torque, and while the standard Polo petrol gets a 5-speed manual gearbox, the GT TSI gets a 7-speed dual clutch autobox that offers slick shifts and rapid progress. It helps in keeping a relaxed left-foot when you’re stuck in city traffic and enables quick downshifts when you’re zipping through truckers on those weekend trips.

Volkswagen Polo Driving

It is just a joy to drive the Volkswagen Polo on freeways, or highways where overtaking was a cakewalk for this hatchback. Taking sharp turns or driving on a tight-bend always remained a top priority for Volkswagen and it still retained its character as there is no change in its underpinnings. The handling and ride quality of the Volkswagen Polo also impressed me as it offers a lot of grip on the road, it feels the car is hugging the road and will never go off track. The only flaw I found while driving was the clutch travel, which was way too extra. This took a bit more effort to drive it in the city traffic. The clutch travel made first and second gearshifts jerky. In short the ride quality at high speed just stands out of the box but at the time when it comes to low speed drives it sucks all your effort to keep the drive smooth and not jerky, thus improving the clutch travel should a top priority for Volkswagen to keep the diesel buyers happy. But the overall experience was thorough.

Volkswagen Polo Safety

The Polo gets dual airbags as standard with ABS offered from the mid-range model onwards. Volkswagen has built this hatchback well and you also get the small, but significant safety features like anti-pinch power windows and the aforementioned auto-dimming interior rear-view mirror.The base model of the Volkswagen Polo is the Trendline that comes with 14-inch steel wheels, dual airbags, air-conditioning, gear-shift indicator, steering wheel, electronic power steering and front power windows. The Comfortline trim is the mid-level variant gets 15-inch alloy wheels, all four power windows, front fog lamps, ABS, anti-pinch windows, rear defogger and windshield wiper, multi-function display and rear parking sensor.

Volkswagen Polo Cost in Hyderabad

Volkswagen Polo Ex-Showroom Price in Hyderabad ranges from 5,40,790/- (Polo 1.2 Trendline Petrol) to 8,83,354/- (Polo 1.5 AllStar Limited Edition). Get best offers for Volkswagen Polo from Volkswagen Dealers in Hyderabad. Check for Polo price in Hyderabad at Carzprice

Volkswagen Polo Conclusion

The Volkswagen Group is known to make the best engines in the world, right from that W16 in the Veyron and Chiron to the ones that power Bentleys, Audis and Lamborghinis. This makes me wonder why can’t VW make a decent small capacity NA engine to compete with Maruti Suzuki’s brilliant K12 unit. Not only does the new MPI engine lack excitement, it doesn’t have the performance to match any of its rivals and when the price actually turns out to be more (the Swift costs lesser), you realise if you want to buy a petrol Polo, you are better off spending Rs. 2 lakhs more for the GT TSI.