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New VW Polo gains sharp suit and better tech

You know that moment when you realise your ‘little’ brother is actually about to give you, the older sibling, a run for your money?

Well, the Volkswagen Polo has moved a step closer to its more prestigious stablemate - the VW Golf - with this new facelift, as it looks a more grown-up car than ever before.

This eagerly-anticipated update comes in the same week as SEAT - part of the Volkswagen Group - revealed the new and improved Ibiza, a direct rival to the Polo.

And with both cars boasting some serious selling points for lease customers, the supermini market just got a massive shot in the arm.

Let’s talk about the looks first, which are striking and have certainly evolved.

LED headlights and LED tail light clusters now come as standard, while there’s a redesign for both the front and the rear, which really does make the Polo look like a slightly-shrunken Golf.

In range-topping R-Line trim the Polo really comes into its own, with exclusive bumpers for the model, high-gloss black air intakes, ‘IQ.LIGHT’ LED matrix headlights and LED fog lights, as well as a shiny black diffuser.

Chrome-look integrated exhaust panels are easy on the eye, as are 16-inch ‘Valencia’ alloy wheels.

Meanwhile there are significant changes to the interior and tech, too.

Every model gets an 8.0 inch VW ‘Digital Cockpit’ to replace traditional dials, as well as a proper infotainment system and a multifunction steering wheel.

And for the first time ever, you can also now get VW’s ‘IQ.DRIVE Travel Assist’ system, which was previously only available on vehicles much higher in the firm’s range.

Explaining what the IQ.DRIVE offers, a spokesperson says it ‘brings together the new predictive Adaptive Cruise Control and Lane Assist – which now comes as standard in every Polo – to create a new assist system that enables partly automated driving.”

The trim levels have also been tweaked compared with previous years.

It now starts with the base ‘Polo’ and moves on to ‘Life’, ‘Style’ and the top-of-the-range ‘R-Line’.

The base Polo comes with Lane Assist, 14 inch wheels, a 6.5-inch media monitor and Bluetooth mobile phone interface, while ‘Life’ includes 15 inch alloys and better interior comfort.

And as you move up to Style and R-Line, you enjoy tech like the ‘Park Distance Control’ system, as well as a larger 10.25-inch Digital Cockpit and an 8-inch Infotainment system.

There’s also some clever safety systems at play.

Another new addition is the centre airbag. Located on the driver side on the side of the rear seat backrest, this airbag opens toward the centre in the event of an accident, protecting the driver and front passenger.

A VW spokesperson sums up:

“The fact is: you’d struggle to find another car in this class that offers such an innovative spectrum of assist systems as the Polo.”

Presales of the new Polo will begin in May.

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Ordered a lease car, helped through the form-filling process, updated on anticipated arrival dates (which understandably changed a few times) only to receive the car pretty much on the original date. So pretty good so far.
Glynn Miles

Friday, 17/06/2022