When Volkswagen was trying to make an impact in the Indian market, it knew that it needed a small and affordable product for long term success. And it decided to bet on the Polo, which went on to become the hottest hatchback in the country. The Polo, when it was first launched, ticked all the right boxes – it was a premium hatchback, which was fun to drive, high on quality, and looked good on the road. As the demand for the Polo grew, VW offered it with new engine variants. The Polo has been on our roads for a few years now. But the market has changed significantly during this time. So, VW decided to launch the Polo with a new 1.0-litre turbo petrol engine, and that’s why we’ve got the Polo back with us again this year in our mega-test.
The Polo has always been a fantastic car, and the VW badge is enough to tell you that it’s a high-quality product. However, it does feel a little dated now. The design hasn’t changed much, and the features list doesn’t come close to what the competition offers today. Even in terms of comfort and space, it’s not the best in the segment, as the interior is still cramped, and the dash layout hasn’t changed in all these years.
The good thing, however, is that the new 1.0-litre turbo motor is a peppy little engine, which feels refined and has a pretty great response, with very little lag. Moreover, one of the biggest highlights of the Polo is the way it handles. The steering is well-weighted and immediately points the car in whichever direction you turn. The Polo is still a super fun car to drive. In fact, it was one of the top-10 fastest cars in terms of lap time out of all the cars we tested at the BIC. The only problem, though, is that there are now better cars that offer so much more. And that’s why the Polo didn’t score well in the X-Factor and value-for-money categories, lowering its overall score this year. All this makes it very clear that the Polo is now in need of a significant upgrade.