Colin-on-Cars – new look for VW Polo

January next year will see the start of sales of the new look Volkswagen Polo that will launch bearing the global nomenclature and offer IQ.Drive Travel Assist as an option.

The Volkswagen Polo was first launched in South Africa in 1996 and Steffen Knapp, Head of the Volkswagen Passenger Car Brand, says: “The Volkswagen Polo is South Africa’s second best-selling passenger car after the Polo Vivo. In 2021, 16 454 Polos have been sold in the local market which translates to a share of 22,6% in the A0 Hatch segment.”

The Polo, built in Kariega in the Eastern Cape, is exported to all right-hand-drive markets worldwide supplements production for left-hand-drive markets. The Kariega plant is also the sole manufacturer of the Polo GTI.

On the new Polo the bumper and tailgate have been given a new look, as have the headlights and tail light clusters which come standard with LED technology. The Polo has a distinctive day time and night time light signature, which includes a new LED light strip along the radiator grille in conjunction with the IQ.LIGHT LED matrix headlights.

The interior of the Polo now boasts a Digital Cockpit, a re-designed multi-function steering wheel, new-generation infotainment systems and wireless App-Connect (optional feature). All modules except the air conditioning are integrated into the dashboard’s upper crossbar with the infotainment system screen located in the centre.

In the R-Line (featured in the images) and Polo GTI derivatives, the two-zone climatronic air-conditioner now has touch panels and sliders which replace the knobs and buttons in the previous generation.

The Polo range is available with a choice of three infotainment systems; Composition Colour with a 6,5-inch display (standard in the 70 kW and 85 kW Polo and Life), Composition Media with an 8.,-inch display (standard in the 85 kW R-Line and Polo GTI) and an 8,0-inch Discover Media system with navigation, wireless App-Connect, Voice Control, inductive mobile charging and a multi-colour Digital Cockpit Pro (optional feature on the Life, R-Line and GTI models).

Travel Assist brings together the functions of the new predictive ACC (Adaptive Cruise Control) and Lane Assist to create a new system that enables semi-automated driving. ACC ensures that the Polo automatically maintains the speed selected by the driver. Using radar sensor technology, it detects if a slower vehicle appears in front of it and then brakes the Polo, therefore always keeping a safe following distance. If there are no longer any cars in front, the Polo accelerates again to the desired speed. The lane keeping system Lane Assist scans the area in front of the Polo and detects lane markings and steers correctively as soon as any unintentional movement out of the lane is detected.

The Polo has moved to Volkswagen’s new naming convention. Previously, the Polo was available in the Trendline (base model), Comfortline (mid-level) and Highline (premium) versions. The new naming convention features the Polo version (base model), Polo Life (mid-level) and R-Line (premium). The new Polo will also be available in a GTI derivative.

The entry-level Polo boasts LED headlights, LED tail light clusters and a new multi-function steering wheel. In the entry-level Polo there is a range of features which come standard; App-Connect, Composition Colour system, 14-inch steel wheels, a Bluetooth mobile phone interface, electronically adjusted and heated exterior mirrors, power windows, door handles and exterior mirror caps in the vehicle colour.

The Polo Life includes additional standard features such as 15-inch Essex alloy wheels, a centre armrest with an additional USB-C port in the middle of the passenger compartment and leather trim on the steering wheel and gear knob.

The R-Line’s bumpers are distinguished from all other Polo versions by their g R design. In the front bumper, the gloss black cross and longitudinal bars of the air intakes convey a dynamic character. A diffuser with chrome integrated exhaust panels in the lower part of the rear also distinguishes this model from the Polo and Life equipment versions.

Standard features in the R-Line include 16-inch Valencia alloy wheels, two-zone climatronic air-conditioner and the Composition Media system with inductive mobile charging.

The new Polo GTI is equipped with sports suspension that is specially tuned for the vehicle. This lowers the body by 15 mm and combines solid driving dynamics, reliable neutrality and very good driving comfort typical for GTI models. Driving profile selection is standard in the new Polo GTI and offers four driving modes of Eco, Individual, Normal and Sport.

The dominating colours in the interior are black, red, grey and chrome. As typical for GTI models, the roof pillars and headliner are Titanium Black. The trim on the dash panel is now finished in a striking Kings Red glossy colour.

Standard features in the new Polo GTI are the two-zone climatronic air-conditioning, IQ. Light LED matrix headlights, 17-inch Milton Keynes alloy wheels and the Composition Media system with inductive mobile charging.

In South Africa, the new Volkswagen Polo will be available with a 1,0-litre TSI 70 kW engine in the Polo and Polo Life specifications. The three-cylinder engine, which is coupled with a 5-speed manual transmission, delivers 70 kW of power and maximum torque of 17 5Nm.

The 1.0 TSI 85kW DSG engine is only available in the Polo Life and Polo R-Line specifications. The three-cylinder engine, which is coupled with a 7-speed DSG transmission, delivers 85 kW of power and maximum torque of 200 Nm.

Like all its predecessors, the new Polo GTI is a front-wheel drive. The 2,0-litre TSI turbo-charged engine delivers a power output of 147 kW. The maximum torque is 320 Nm at 1 500 r/min to 4 500 r/min.

Pricing for the new Polo range in South Africa will be confirmed closer to the launch date and it will retail from Volkswagen dealers in January 2022.

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