The first all-new Volkswagen Polo in eight years has been revealed overseas, flaunting more mature styling and a bigger footprint.
Built on the new MQB A0 platform shared with the next-generation Audi A1 and Skoda Fabia, the Mk6 Polo follows other competitors by stretching dimensions in all directions except height, including a 94mm longer wheelbase - now 2564mm.
Volkswagen says this means significantly improved passenger space, with boot space also swelling from the current car’s 280 litres to a more useful 351 litres.
Inside, the Polo gains new technology centred around an integrated infotainment screen that measures 6.5 to 8.0 inches depending on variant, and an optional all-electronic instrument panel behind the steering wheel that’s borrowed from the Mk7.5 Golf and Volkswagen Tiguan.
Soft-touch surfaces provide a premium feel and there will be 13 colour choices for the dash and 11 upholstery options.
Available only as a five-door hatch, the 2018 Polo has “expressive,” exterior design with a bolder face framed by C-shaped daytime running lights. At the rear, a square-set rump pushes the tail lamps further to the sides and widens the tailgate.
The Sportier R-Line models gain chunky air intakes, a rear diffuser and a roof spoiler.
The entry level model comes with automatic city braking with pedestrian detection and front assist, and while that has only been confirmed for Germany so far, we expect that technology will be made standard locally as well.
Other available features across the range include adaptive cruise control, full LED headlights, adaptive dampers, a panoramic sunroof and blind spot detection.
Engine options in Europe include 1.0-litre three-cylinder naturally aspirated engines producing 48kW or 55kW depending on the variant, and 70kW - 85kW turbo versions of the same motor. Don’t expect the atmo three-pots to come our way.
A brace of diesel options will also be offered in Europe, with 59kW and 70kW outputs.
We’ll also see four-cylinder turbo engines including a 110kW 1.5-litre and a Golf-sourced 147kW 2.0-litre, the latter powering the range-topping Polo GTI hot hatch.
The GTI also gets an even wider and longer wheelbase, a standard ‘sport’ chassis or optional ‘Sport Select’ chassis, 17-inch or optional 18-inch wheels, a different body kit with lip spoilers and sill extensions, the iconic go-fast red stripe across the grille and GTI badging.
Transmission options across the range will continue to include a five- and six-speed manual gearboxes and seven-speed dual clutch auto, with power going to the front wheels.
The 2018 Volkwagen Polo is expected to arrive here in early 2018, with local prices, range and specifications announced closer to launch.
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