At first look, VW Polo looks a typical hatchback with a premium tag banking on the prominent VW logo in the front grill. The look is not flashy but gives a masculine, sturdy appearance. The crystal clear headlamps with integrated indicators replaces the smoked headlamps of the European versions to cater to the price sensibilities of the Indian market. First glimpse of the front gives you a sturdy, masculine German machine. Not bad but not flashy either. Come to the sides, the prominent waistlines with door panels and rear view mirrors that flows with the body lines gives a pleasing look. The rooflines gives an aerodynamic look but then these days every car maker makes sure these things are taken care of isn’t it?
Over to the back, honestly it does not impress me much. The look is quiet boring and traditional. Not inspiring. Some fresh design inputs could have gone into the tail lamps. The only thing I liked in the back is the VW logo that also acts as the tailgate opener.
Polo comes in 6 colors: Candy White, Flash Red, Emotion Blue, reflex Silver, Pepper Grey, and Deep Black. My pick was Flash Red.
The inside looks:
Stepping inside, the first thing you obviously notice in any car is the dashboard. The instrument clutter and the dashboard in general do not make you whistle but it is loaded with sensible design and utility values. The quality of the plastic and other materials are very high and that offset the lack of flamboyance. Lot of care has gone into intelligent and sensible positioning of controls and utilities making it very ergonomic and user friendly. The steering is soft, trendy and gives you a good grip and feel to drive. The speedometer dials are extremely well lit.
The front seating is well positioned and comfortable with good legroom and headroom for an average Indian. The rear seating is little cramped but just about adequate. The boot space is quiet spacious like Figo and that is good news for Indian families who pack in a lot while traveling. The rear view mirror inside the car mounted on the windscreen is trendy and well positioned to give an effective usage.
Polo comes in Petrol and diesel version. Though you may have to wait till may for the diesel version. The 1.2 litre petrol engine generates 74 bhp at 5400 rpm. The car is pretty good surging ahead and nice in city roads with a good road performance and handling. The best of the car performance can be extracted in the highway riding. The sturdy suspension and a decent ground clearance are well suited for Indian road conditions.
Pricing and goodies:
Here comes the all important factor though of course we are talking about a car positioned at a premier segment of hatchback. The car comes in three variant: Trendline, comfort line and high line. The trend line starts @ Rs. 4. 42 lakhs, The base line is Rs. 4.93 Lakhs and the high line stands at Rs. 5.82 Lakhs. All prices mentioned are ex-showroom, Bangalore. Trend line is very basic and stripped down and does not inspire the price tag. Unfortunately, the dual air bags are part of the high line. So is the case with fog lamps, ABS, Radio with MP3 players, rear defogger and rear wiper, VW could have incorporated air bags atleast in the comfort line.
GingerChai Verdict: Polo comes with a traditional but masculine styling, good, decent performance, a VW logo and brand but will it be enough for the German automaker to surge against the aggressively priced Figo, smart looking punto, the street smart i20 and the widely popular and accepted Swift? We have to wait and watch. If you have the extra bucks for the higher version of Polo, go for a test drive.