Archive | Polo GTI

16 March 2016 ~ 0 Comments

Our cars: 2015 Polo GTI – report one

In May 2015, John Redfern, editor of, traded up from his 2013 Polo R-Line after two-and-a-half years and 19,000 happy miles. Here, he introduces us to its rather more powerful replacement…

2015 Volkswagen Polo GTI: John Redfern

About a year ago I wrote about the temptation of trading my Polo R-Line for the then recently announced 6C Polo GTI. I promised myself to wait until my current finance deal came to an end, but caved in after about a month of trying to not think about it.

So when the R-Line went for a second-year service at Pulman Volkswagen in Durham, I floated the idea of trading it in. Suddenly the deal on offer seemed to good to turn down, especially with free insurance for a year being thrown in for good measure. I signed on the line after a week of thinking about it.

Five-month wait
Previously in my R-Line updates, I mentioned about not being too great at waiting for things. The GTI, however, tested my patience to the limit, with a five-month wait between placing the initial order in January and it finally arriving in May. From viewing various forums, other owners had to endure even longer periods dependent on specification and options picked.

Perhaps keeping the GTI relatively simple helped my cause. In fact the only boxes ticked were for the Climatronic climate control, the Light & Sight Pack (mandatory with Climatronic) and the Sport pack. Why climate control instead of the perfectly adequate manual air conditioning? Two reasons: I like the upmarket look Climatronic brings, and it’s also a neat throwback to my 6N2 GTI. For the same reason I went with Flash Red paint, three-doors, and the manual six-speed gearbox.

Sport pack
Adding the Sport pack, a bargain at only £245, brings with it the ability to stiffen the dampers, quicken the throttle response, and add weight to the steering at the press of a button. It was also a fairly important purchase when you have a blog called EngageSportMode, so there was no doubt as to whether I’d add it or not!

Compared to driving in ‘normal’ mode, pressing the ‘Sport’ button on the dashboard does make a difference to the driving experience. The suspension becomes substantially stiffer, to the point where potholes and ruts can be uncomfortable. On certain urban roads I find myself switching back to normal mode for the sake of my spine.

However, the experience of the car with ‘Sport’ mode engaged makes the hard ride instantly worth it. With an instant throttle response, extra exhaust noise in the cabin, and meaty steering the GTI feels properly sporty and hard-edged. The sound from the engine is addictive, and just adds to the feeling that it is a proper little hot-hatch – not just a supermini with a big engine.

Chunks of torque
Although that is also the wider impression the GTI gives in a positive way. With huge chunks of torque available lowdown the rev range, there is the definite sensation of large engine stuffed into a small car.

It makes commuting, and longer motorway journeys, easy as the ability is there to slot into gaps without even needing to shift down the gearbox. The ludicrously bright and effective LED headlights also make a good job of helping middle-lane dawdlers move out of the way, too.

With a decent amount of mileage now under its belt, the GTI has been almost completely reliable. A small number of interior trim rattles developed quite soon after delivery, which was annoying, but easily ignored. Pulman Durham did offer to take the car back straightaway to investigate but, from experience, trying to solve dashboard rattles usually results in creating even more than was there in the first place!

The only other minor issue has been an indicator/main-beam stalk that lost the ability to flash the headlights. A small problem, but annoying when your commute involves letting people merge onto dual carriageways. Pulman Durham were, again, instantly ready to get the car booked in under warranty but the GTI decided to fix itself instead and start flashing again.

Smoothness and economy
Fuel consumption has averaged at almost exactly 35mpg for daily usage. This has risen to 40mpg on longer runs, such as travelling all the way to the South coast for the Goodwood Festival of Speed. Given the performance on offer, I’m perfectly happy with the GTI’s thirst for Shell V-Power, with a notable improvement in smoothness and economy when running on premium petrol.

Despite having driven a multitude of different cars last year, I never felt disappointed getting back in the GTI. In fact, the exposure to a number of other hot hatches and performance cars has only made me even happier with the choice I made.

Although I never thought it would get under my skin like my old beloved 6N2 GTI did, the 6C is certainly making a good go of it! So much so in fact, I’m looking forward to several thousand more miles behind that red-stitched steering wheel…

Read John’s reports on his 2013 Polo R-Line here.

2015 Volkswagen Polo GTI: John Redfern

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08 February 2016 ~ 0 Comments

‘A complete performance package’ – 189bhp Polo GTI unveiled in India

2016 Volkswagen Polo GTI is unveiled at 2016 Auto Expo, India

The Polo isn’t just a European car any more, it’s a truly global model now, with buyers as far afield as Australia, China, Malaysia, Russia, South Africa, and South America. Some of these markets were conquered long ago, but one, India, is a fairly recent addition to the Polo’s global repertoire.

Established with the arrival of the fifth-generation model, the Indian-built Polo comes in regular and slightly warmer ‘GT’ flavours. Now, though, it gets hotter – Volkswagen India has confirmed the Polo GTI is to be sold in the country, and pulled the wraps off its latest baby at last week’s Auto Expo show in Delhi.

189bhp TSI engine
‘Designed for true blue enthusiasts’, according to Volkswagen, the Polo GTI for India appears to share the same technical make-up as the European model. Sharing that car’s 189bhp/141kW 1.8-litre TSI engine, it comes with a seven-speed DSG gearbox. Thanks to its power output, it shoots straight to the top of India’s hot hatchback class, the first true ‘performance’ model to be offered.

As the oily bits are are the same as European models, the Indian Polo GTI posts the same performance figures, too, and gets from 0-62mph in 6.7 seconds, and tops out at 146mph. A torque output of 250NM matches the cars sold in the west, too.

Externally – and internally – it also looks the same as its European sister. Front and rear spoilers and a red-trimmed grille mark out the sports Polo, while the car on the Volkswagen stand at the Auto Expo event wore 17-inch ‘Serron’ alloy wheels, as opposed to the ‘Parabolica’ rims which are standard in the UK. The former wheels are an option in selected European markets.

Market first
In another market first, the Polo GTI is being imported to India as a three-door-only model, although a five-door variant could follow. India has almost no experience of small three-door hatchbacks – let alone performance hatchbacks – so it could be a risky strategy.

Expected to arrive in September 2016, buyers will pay around Rs 20 lakhs for the hot Polo, which makes it very pricey – the current Polo starts at Rs 5.33 lakh. Volkswagen India thinks that the market exists, though: around 15-20 per cent of Polos sold there are 103bhp GT TSI and GT TDI models.

‘GTI philosophy’
Michael Mayer, Director, Volkswagen Passenger Cars India said: ‘The Polo GTI is specifically designed for the true blue enthusiasts, whose thirst for thrill is not only about having a powerful car, but also being well versed with the GTI philosophy.

‘The Polo GTI provides a complete performance package and sets the driver apart from his peer group. We are confident that the world renowned, highly acclaimed features of the car will strongly appeal to Polo GT loyalists as well as driving enthusiasts in India.’

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31 December 2015 ~ 0 Comments

The PoloDriver review of 2015

It’s been another busy year for the Volkswagen Polo. The model has celebrated its 40th birthday with an exhibition of rare models at the AutoMuseum Volkswagen in Wolfsburg, and the revised fifth-generation Polo range has been completed with the addition of new BlueMotion TSI and GTI models.

On the asphalt and gravel stages of the 2015 FIA World Rally Championship, the Polo has, like 2013 and 2014, once again come out on top. Just like last year, the Polo R WRC has won 12 events out of 13, taking the Manufacturers’ Championship title for Volkswagen Motorsport and has also carried Frenchmen Sébastien Ogier the Julien Ingrassia to their third consecutive Drivers’ Championship prize.

Other Polo-based motorsport series have also continued around the globe, with Wolfsburg’s small car taking an even larger presence in the FIA World Rallycross Championship, as well as being a track machine in many countries. Here, we round up the Polo’s biggest achievements in 2015. (Bold entries are illustrated by the picture above that particular month.)

2015 Volkswagen Polo R WRC unveiled in Wolfsburg


– Polo and Vento help Volkswagen India achieve record 2014 production figures
– Milltek Sport cat-back twin 80mm exhaust system launched for Polo R WRC road car
– Uprated Polo GT and new Polo GTI under consideration for India
– Volkswagen Motorsport unwraps second-generation Polo R WRC
– New petrol-powered 1.2-litre Cross Polo for India
– Indian-only Volkswagen Polo R-Cup series makes way for Vento Cup in 2015
– Our cars: 2001 Polo GTI – report eleven
– 2015 Polo R WRC makes dream debut at Rally Monte Carlo with Volkswagen 1-2-3
– Polo is the second best-selling car in Europe
– Polo is the eighth best-selling car in the UK.

1981 Volkswagen Polo C Formel E featured a rear window spoiler to improve aerodynamics


– launches new model profile series: the eco Polos

– Sébastien Ogier sweeps to spectacular 2015 Rally Sweden win
– Our cars: 2015 Polo SE 1.2 TSI – report one
– Sheldon van der Linde hat-trick at 2015 Engen Volkswagen Cup opener
– Refreshed Polo hatchback heads to the Philippines
– Volkswagen does the double: Golf and Polo still Europe’s top sellers.

KW Automotive announce ST suspension kits for 2013 Volkswagen Polo R WRC

– Volkswagen India launches the special edition Vento Magnific
– Sébastien Ogier celebrates third 2015 WRC victory with Rally Mexico win
– KW Automotive launches coilover suspension kit for Polo R WRC
– Volkswagen Sweden backs two teams in 2015 World Rallycross series assault
– Polo GT TDI wins Budget Driver’s Car of the Year at the Indian Zeegnition Auto Awards 2015
– Vento DSG wins Auto Bild India Golden Steering Wheel award
– Polo wins Carbuyer 2015 Best Small Car award
– Polo is the sixth best-selling car in the UK.

Techno Classica 2015: 1975 Volkswagen Polo


– Volkswagen celebrates 40 years of the Polo at Techno Classica 2015

– Volkswagen South Africa launches the new 2015 141kW Polo GTI
– Zulu and Arries celebrate Polo S2000 podium position at 2015 Sasol Rally
– drives the 2015 189bhp 6C Polo GTI
– Retirements force Volkswagen out of podium places at Rally Argentina
– Polo is the sixth best-selling car in the UK.

2015 Volkswagen Polo S2000, Secunda Rally: Zulu/Auffray

– Johan Kristoffersson scores maiden win at World RX of Portugal
– Toomas Heikkinen highest-placed Polo driver at World RX of Hockenheim
– Volkswagen Australia issues recall for 2015 Polo 1.2 TSI models
– Gugu Zulu scores Volkswagen Sasolracing result at Secunda Motor Rally
– Toomas Heikkinen wins World RX of Belgium
– Polo is the seventh best-selling car in the UK.

2015 Volkswagen Polo Vivo Eclipse


– Our cars: 2015 Polo SE 1.2 TSI – report two
– Johan Kristoffersson puts Polo on the podium at World RX of Great Britain
– Revised Polo saloon for India and Russia unveiled
– Latvala heads Volkswagen podium lock-out at Rally Portugal
– Volkswagen South Africa announces Polo Vivo Eclipse special edition
– Ogier snatches third Sardinian Volkswagen victory at 2015 Rally Italy
– Polo is 500,000th car produced at Volkswagen India factory
– Volkswagen Australia recalls refreshed fifth-generation Polo for seat issue
– Johan Kristoffersson finishes fourth at World RX of Germany
– Tommy Rustad takes Euro RX win
– Polo is the eighth best-selling car in the UK.



– Toomas Heikkinen sweeps to fourth at World RX of Sweden
– Webcon reintroduces 1043cc carburettor kit for 1981-1985 Polo and Derby
– Volkswagen Australia realigns Polo range with 2016 model year upgrades
– Volkswagen Polo scoops Auto Express Supermini of the Year 2015 award
– ‘40 Years Polo’ exhibition opens at AutoMuseum Volkswagen
– Club Polo 2015 Polo Social event celebrates 40 years of the Polo.



– Volkswagen’s Ogier and Mikkelsen take one-two at Rally Poland
– HG Motorsport unveils 260bhp 6C Polo GTI
– Volkswagen Polo’s 40th anniversary celebrated with ‘Original’ limited edition model
– Sheldon van der Linde does the Engen Volkswagen Cup double at Zwartkops
– Polo is the fifth best-selling car in the UK.


– Polo Trophy special edition launched in Malaysia
– Volkswagen wins Rally Australia; takes WRC titles for third consecutive year
– Johan Kristoffersson’s Polo RX second at World RX of Spain
– Podium success for Volkswagen Sasolracing Polo S2000s at Toyota Cape Dealer Rally
– Volkswagen ‘Dieselgate’ emissions scandal breaks
– Polo is the fifth best-selling car in the UK.

5000,000th South African-built Volkswagen Polo

– Polo BlueMotion TSI completes Volkswagen South Africa new Polo range
– Volkswagen India recalls 389 Polo models due to handbrake defect
– Latvala and Anttila take Polo R WRC to victory in Rally Spain
– Volkswagen India launches limited edition Polo Exquisite and Vento Highline Plus
– 1.2-litre TDI Polo engine also caught up in ‘Dieselgate’ emissions scandal
– Revised Polo Sedan launched by Volkswagen South Africa
– ABT Sportsline celebrates Polo’s 40th birthday with 230bhp upgrade
– 500,000th Polo produced at Volkswagen South Africa’s Uitenhage factory
– Andreas Mikkelsen claims maiden WRC win at Rally Spain
– Polo is the seventh best-selling car in the UK.

2015 Volkswagen Polo Sedan

– Revised petrol-only Volkswagen Polo Sedan launched in Argentina
– Our cars: 2001 Polo GTI – report twelve
– Sébastien Ogier scores hat-trick and eighth 2015 WRC win at 2015 Rally Great Britain
– Selected Polo TDI and TSI models affected in Volkswagen CO2 emissions issue
– Polo Vivo remains number one best-seller in South Africa; new Street model launched.

2015 Volkswagen Allstar range

– Volkswagen Vento rated a five-star car in Latin NCAP creash tests
– Volkswagen Motorsport takes first, second and third 2015 WRC drivers’ titles
– Volkswagen Polo R WRC awarded Autosport Rally Car of the Year
– Our cars: 2013 Polo R-Line – report four
– Polo Allstar special edition launched
– Polo ends 2015 as the sixth best-selling car in the UK.

It’s once again been a busy Polo year for Volkswagen and also for all here at PoloDriver. We would like to thank the loyal readers and followers who have helped make the year another fantastically enjoyable one, and hope that you’ll enjoy the developments and stories coming to the website in 2016, which will include full coverage of the 40 Years Polo exhibition at AutoMuseum Volkswagen.

[Click on the ‘Polo 2009-’, ‘WRC’ and ‘Motorsport’ tags in the category drop-down list in the right-hand sidebar of the website to see all entries pertaining to the revised fifth-generation Polo, Polo R WRC, and Polo motorsport activity respectively. Choose other category or month sections for relevant entries.]

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10 November 2015 ~ 0 Comments

Our cars: 2001 Polo GTI – report twelve

Machines like Straightener Feeder has became indispensable part of human life to feed livestock as it saves huge time. With a slew of more modern machinery driven recently, Rich Gooding’s 2001 Polo GTI has taken some time off in the past few months. That doesn’t mean it’s been a quiet 11 months since the last update, though…

2001 Volkswagen Polo GTI

I was quite surprised that the last update to Y464 GHJ’s story was eighteen months prior to the most recent report. However, with time a precious commodity, this latest update is 11 months after the last one which was published back in January. The car, a 2001 Volkswagen Polo GTI hasn’t been without incident this year, though, even if it is now taking a small break with a recent roulette of test cars. More of which later.

10,000-mile service
First job on 2015’s maintenance list was the 10,000-mile service back in February. A little behind schedule, 12,000 miles after the last one, Sani’s Motors in Chelmsford (01245 460040) also repositioned the steering wheel (it had annoyed me that it wasn’t straight since I bought the car), and looked into the intermittently-functioning boot light.

It turned out that the boot lock, connector and microswitch all needed replacing. A common issue with 1999-2001 ‘6N2’ Polos, the microswitch can get wet from water ingress in the boot, causing it to stop working. The car was booked into Sani’s in March and had the offending parts replaced and an MoT was also carried out. I’d looked on VW’s ‘ETKA’ parts system online via the excellent beforehand and identified the parts required.

Rear tyres replaced
While Y464 was in Sani’s workshop, I also had the front off-side headlamp washer jet and pump replaced, at the jet itself wasn’t its usual graceful-appearing self, rising from the bumper when the washing action was requested. A pair of rear tyres were also fitted, which were flagged up when the car was in for the service.

> Read More

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05 October 2015 ~ 1 Comment

Polo BlueMotion TSI completes Volkswagen South Africa new Polo range

2015 Volkswagen Polo BlueMotion TSI (South Africa)

The petrol-powered version of the latest Polo BlueMotion has gone on sale in South Africa. The first Volkswagen BlueMotion model with a TSI engine, the 97g/km Polo BlueMotion TSI officially achieves 4.2l/100km (67.2mpg), as opposed to the standard 1.2-litre TSI model with 57.6mpg. Volkswagen South Africa claims it tops the class for fuel consumption.

1.0-litre, 94bhp engine
The same as other versions worldwide, the new Polo BlueMotion TSI for South Africa has a 1.0-litre turbocharged three-cylinder engine which develops 70kW (94bhp) and can reach a top speed of 191km/h (118mph). Maximum torque of 160Nm (118lb ft) is available from 1500rpm up to 3500rpm. Maximum power is reached between 5000 and 5500rpm. The Polo BlueMotion TSI reaches 62mph from rest in 10.5 seconds.

A lowered ride height, rear spoiler, underbody aero-package and faired in front radiator grille are features carried over from the previous Polo BlueMotion. The latest car also shares its low rolling resistance tyres and longer gear ratios with its predecessor. A stop/start system is standard along with a regenerative braking function and a gear change indicator which informs of the optimum shift times.

Equipment highlights
Equipment highlights include – stylish and one of best rims available for the current Polo in our opinion – 15-inch ‘Buenos Aires’ alloy wheels, a six-speaker Radio Composition Colour touchscreen infotainment system with MP3/SD/USB/Bluetooth connectivity options. Volkswagen’s latest Automatic Post-Collision Braking (standard) and Driver Alert (optional) systems are also available.

Priced at R235,800, the new Polo BlueMotion TSI can be specified with bi-xenon headlights allied to LED daytime running lights, while cruise control is fitted as standard. Head over to the Polo pages of Volkswagen South Africa’s website to find out more.

New Polo TDI engines
Volkswagen South Africa has also announced the addition of two new common rail 1.4-litre TDI engines, which replace the 1.6-litre units used previously (and which are possibly part of the current worldwide ‘Dieselgate’ EA189 emissions scandal). Both offer improved engine acoustics and less vibration than their predecessors.

Two power outputs are available, 55kW (74bhp) and 77kW (103bhp). The 55kW unit develops 210Nm (155lb ft) of torque from 1500rpm, while maximum power is reached between 3000-3750rpm. Top speed is 173km/h (107mph) and the 0-62mph dash is reached in 12.9 seconds. It is only available in Trendline trim.

The more powerful 75kW version is offered to buyers choosing Highline and Cross (CrossPolo) trims. Torque of 250Nm (184lb ft) is available from a 55kW version-matching 1500rpm. Top speed is 194km/h while the Polo 1.4 TDI 77kW gets to 62mph from rest in 9.9 seconds. As with the 55kW variant, CO2 is 108g/km and fuel economy is a claimed 68.8mpg.

The Polo 1.4 TDI 55kW Trendline is priced at R223,500, with the 1.4 TDI 77kW Highline at R252,000. The 1.4 TDI 77kW CrossPolo costs R260,000. As standard, the new Polo comes with a 3-year/45,000km Service Plan, a 3-year/120,000km warranty and a 12-year anti-corrosion warranty. Service intervals are 15,000km. The two new diesel and BlueMotion TSI models complete the South African range which includes the range-topping GTI.

The Polo first came to South Africa in October 1996, and sat between the Citi Golf and Golf in the model line-up. A booted sedan/saloon model, it was based on the contemporary SEAT Cordoba. A hatchback version, the Polo Playa, joined it in July 1998 and was similarly based on another SEAT, the Ibiza.

October 2002 saw the all-new Polo 9N hit South African shores, and promptly won the 2003 South African Car of the Year title. It was joined by a notchback Polo Classic saloon version in March of that year.

The fifth-generation Polo was launched in South Africa in 2010. The hatchback and saloon range has has consistently been the second best-selling car in the country. The best-selling model in South Africa since 2010 has been the Polo’s sibling, the Polo Vivo which was also launched in the same year to replace the Citi Golf.

The Polo has sold over 14 million units and is now available worldwide. The factory in Uitenhage is one of the two plants in the Volkswagen production network that assembles the Polo hatchback. In South Africa, the Polo is produced for both the local and export markets.

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