Volkswagen is set to take the covers off the all-new Polo on June 16, ahead of the model’s international launch in the latter half of the year.
The all-new car, which was recently spied testing completely undisguised on international roads, features a more dynamic-looking exterior that, VW officials suggest, will help broaden its sales appeal. Redesigned headlights, a more heavily sloping roofline and a more structured rear-end design were among the elements evident in these latest pictures.
The new Polo eschews the old PQ25 platform of today’s model for an all-new MQB-based structure developed for the Volkswagen Group’s so-called A0 segment models, which include the new Seat Ibiza and next-generation Skoda Fabia. Reflecting the changes to the recently unveiled new Ibiza, the upcoming Polo is notably longer and wider than before. The new car is 4,053mm long, 1,751mm wide, 1,446mm high and has a wheelbase of 2,564mm.
The bigger dimensions are allied to a longer wheelbase and wider tracks, which also mean increased interior space and a significantly larger boot than the outgoing model.
The latest Polo has gained an all-new cabin. VW hopes it will trump rivals on perceived interior quality, with a soft dashboard fascia and new trim elements, as well as controls and front seats sourced from the recently facelifted Golf. There will also be options recently introduced to larger models. These include a digital instrument display, a new generation of touchscreen infotainment systems, the latest Park Pilot automatic parking and keyless entry.
The engine line-up will be consolidated as per the cost-cutting initiatives started by VW boss Herbert Diess.
An insider told our sister publication Autocar UK, “Today’s model has 14 different drivetrain alternatives. This will be reduced. You’ll see more modern and economical engines in the future.”
Entry-level versions of the new Polo will use a turbocharged 1.0-litre three-cylinder petrol engine in 65hp, 75hp, 95hp and 115hp guises. Meanwhile, the turbo 1.2-litre petrol unit is likely to be dropped. VW’s three-cylinder petrol engine is again set to power a frugal BlueMotion version.
The turbo 1.4-litre four-cylinder petrol engine used in today’s Polo will be replaced by the turbo 1.5-litre four-cylinder petrol unit recently launched in the facelifted Golf.
As in its larger sibling, it has cylinder shutdown technology and is expected to be offered in 130hp and 150hp guises. The higher-powered version will propel the replacement for today’s Polo Blue GT.
Topping the range will be a successor to the Polo GTI. Rumours suggest it will use a turbo 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol unit with upwards of 200hp. Plans for an even more powerful Polo R have been cancelled.
Although VW eventually intends to replace its small diesel engines with petrol-electric drivetrains, the new Polo will continue to offer diesel units. Replacing the 1.4-litre three-cylinder diesel of today’s model is an updated version of VW’s controversial 1.6-litre, four-cylinder diesel engine, likely in 80hp, 95hp and, possibly, 110hp guises.
A five-speed manual gearbox will be available on lower-powered engines, with a six-speed manual on powerful units. A seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox will be an option.
For the Indian market, Volkswagen has entered into an alliance with Tata Motors over the use of Tata’s AMP platform to develop indigenous cars for the market. So, while Volkswagen could be eyeing the replacement of the Polo in India as well, it is not yet known if they will bring in a re-engineered version of the all-new international model or launch an indigenously developed alternative.