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20 September 2009 ~ 0 Comments

ABT Polo

2009 ABT Volkswagen Polo

While Volkswagen is still deciding on the specification and power of the new Polo GTI, renowned German tuner ABT Sportsline has stepped in and announced its own take on the hot Polo. They say they’ve created a car with ‘character’, and although based on the five-door bodyshell, the result is certainly striking.

A carbon-look rear spoiler and apron insert give the ABT Polo a racy look, while the twin exhausts signal its intentions. Anthracite-coloured 8J x 18-inch alloy wheels add to the visual appeal, and in a throwback to 1970s styling motifs, the bottom of the doors have ABT-branded decals.

2009 ABT Volkswagen Polo

To go with the show, there’s also more go. Careful tuning of the new car’s petrol and diesel units has produced more power, but left the emissions and fuel economy the same as the standard model’s. The top-flight 1.2-litre TSI engine produces 128bhp in the Allgaeu tuner’s hands (up from 103), while the 1.6 TDI sees increases in all its forms (73bhp to 88bhp, 88bhp to 108bhp, 103bhp to 128bhp). The tuner also claims increased dynamism, too, with lowered springs to give improved handling.

ABT has yet to give prices or availability for the UK market.

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19 September 2009 ~ 0 Comments

Polo Selecta

Car modifying can be an exact science. If you fit wheels that are too big they can scrape the wheelarches. If you fit suspension that is too low, you lose your teeth over every speed bump, and every pothole in the road becomes a crashy black hole. Some are so deep, your nicely modified car could quite feasibly get lost in them, never to return. So, before you alter anything, here’s a tool which can give you a little cosmetic idea of what those mods will look like. But only if you have a 1975 to 1994 Volkswagen Polo.

Polo Selecta Mk 2
Old school: lowered Polo Coupe 2 with 14″ ‘Pirelli’ alloys and GT decals

Made by the Polo-Land forum in France, the brilliant Polo Selecta is based on a similar piece of kit for previewing modifications on old Beetles. First, you choose your steed (hatchback, coupé and saloon are all there, pre and post-facelifts), then apply a colour, and you’re away. Wheels can be chosen next – 1980s Ronal Turbos or classic ATS 15-inchers? Suspension can be slammed to the floor (but be wary of those violent sleeping policemen), and the rake of the car adjusted, too.

Polo Selecta Mk 2F
Modern with a classic twist: lowered Polo Coupé 2F with ATS 15″ alloys

Accessories can be added, as can different sets of lights, side repeaters, aerials, and side mouldings and spoilers can be added or taken off. Great detail has been made to make every detail right. With the colour palette, there’s even a selection of decals from the varying Polo models that had them. The possible combinations are staggering. It’s great fun, can while away more than a few minutes, and I can see it becoming quite addictive. Your Polo can instantly become a Po-low, and the age-old ‘What flavour is yours?’ Polo mint gag can be taken to new heights.

It’s a while since I modified a car, as these days I prefer my 1994 Polo GT near-standard (on the outside at least), but I could quite easily catch the online modifying bug. Although not radical, how are these for starters?

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15 September 2009 ~ 0 Comments

Polo GTI, MPV, cabrio and estate; new flavours mooted at Frankfurt

2009 Volkswagen Polo
Extended family: new Polo range could expand to include MPV, cabrio and estate. Three-door GTI to confirmed for 2010 with a firecracking 200bhp

The 63rd IAA Frankfurt (the 2009 Frankfurt motor show to you and us) opened its doors today, and fresh from the halls, UK motoring weekly Autocar reports that once-dead variants of the new Polo could be resurrected. In an exclusive interview with Dr Ulrich Hackenburg, VW’s product chief, a new MPV, cabrio and estate could all be still to come.

It’s been reported elsewhere that a new four-door saloon of the new car would be built in China, India and Russia for local consumption, but it may also now be offered to European markets (including the UK), too. One or other of the MPV and estate will come as well, both based on the notchback.

One model that definitely is coming, and one that we reported on just last week, is the new high-performance Polo GTI. Autocar also reports that tests on a 200bhp version have been taking place at the Nürburgring, ahead of a late 2010 launch. Standard kit could include a DSG gearbox with paddle-shifts and an electronic limited-slip differential, similar to the Golf GTI’s XDS system.

In a final twist, a 280bhp ‘Cup’ model could also be offered for limited sale. A 180bhp GTI Cup Edition version of the outgoing car was offered in European markets to tie in with the ADAC Volkswagen Polo Cup racing series, which has been visiting continental racing circuits since 2004.

2006 Volkswagen Polo GTI Cup Edition
Racing line: Polo GTI Cup Edition of 2006 had a 180bhp 1.8T engine, unique bodykit and interior, and was sold on mainland Europe in limited numbers

In a piece of equally encouraging news, Hackenburg declares that Volkswagen is determined to make the Polo ‘one of the most important Volkswagen models of all, rivalling the Golf in worldwide sales.’ About time, too. It’s only taken 34 years…

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15 September 2009 ~ 1 Comment

Polo BlueMotion ‘Hitchhiker’ TV commercials

This pair of commercials are a little different to the usual Volkswagen type of advertising. Still playing the humour card, but to much less an effect, they’re promoting the outgoing Polo BlueMotion, under the ‘Selected Volkswagen’ banner.

(Thanks to German Car Scene.)

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11 September 2009 ~ 1 Comment

Auto Motor und Sport offers appetisers of 2010 CrossPolo and Polo GTI flavours

The new Polo has only just turned a wheel in anger and already there are rumours circulating about upcoming models. The German Car Blog reports today that leading German car news weekly Auto Motor und Sport has inside information on at least two still-to-come Polo variants.

The much-spectulated MPV version has been canned according to various sources, but updated flavours of both the CrossPolo (Polo Dune in the UK market) and GTI are very much still in the frame.

2010 Volkswage Polo GTI render
Little brother: new Polo GTI due in 2010 once again borrows its sharp styling from big brother Golf GTI, and will pack a 169bhp punch. Will a hardcore ‘R’ version follow?

As well as showing both the three-door and BlueMotion versions of the new Polo at the Frankfurt motor show next week, we think Volkswagen will unwrap the 169bhp TSI-engined GTI version at one of 2010’s major car expos; either Geneva in March or Paris in September.

A jacked-up two-wheel drive CrossPolo with SUV-like styling will also arrive, more than likely completing the new Polo model palette.

2010 Volkswagen CrossPolo render
Faux-by-Four: upcoming two-wheel drive CrossPolo has inherited styling flourishes from its predecessor (Polo Dune in the UK) and will have both petrol and diesel engines

Head over here to read the (German) Auto Motor und Sport article, which also details other 2010 upcoming Volkswagen models.

(Pictures: Auto Motor und Sport)

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