2018 Volkswagen Polo 1.0 MPI Review
- Published On: 20 September 2018
- 5 min read
The new Volkswagen Polo 1.0 MPI gets the new 999cc petrol engine instead of a 1.2-litre engine. Apart from the change in the engine the rest of the vehicle remains unchanged.
The Volkswagen Polo is one of the best hatchbacks in the country but this German car has a couple of major hitches. First, the car lacks space on the rear seat and second the engine on this car is very humdrum. Other than these, the Polo is the cheapest German car that one can buy in India. The Polo now comes with a new 1.0 MPI engine and we test the car to tell you whether it is any better than the older 1.2 MPI unit.
Exteriors – The design of the Polo is elegant but it has aged with time. There is no MPI badging on the boot lid. The top of the line variant Highline Plus gets 16-inch alloy wheels. Forget about the LEDs, the car doesn’t even get projector headlights. At this price point, the manufacturer still equips the car with the conventional lamps.
Interiors – The quality of material used on the inside is very upmarket along with a good level of fit and finish. The car gets many features like ABS with EBD, cruise control, rear AC vents, reverse parking sensors, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The car gets an artificial leather seat and piano black finish on the centre console which looks appealing. The instrument cluster on the car is quite dated. The car also misses out on many features like keyless entry, push-button start and a reverse parking camera. Now speaking about the major drawback on the inside, the legroom at the rear is extremely limited plus there's no centre headrest too.
Performance – The engine on the new Polo is the same as the Volkswagen Ameo petrol. The 1.2-litre, 3-cylinder engine is replaced with the 999cc, 3-pot unit. However, the power output of the new engine remains to be the same 76 BHP but there is a drop of 15 Nm of torque. The car sprints to 100 km/hr from a standstill in a rather slow 16.5 seconds. The fuel economy of this car in the real world is somewhere around 13 km/l.
The new engine is not peppy at all, as it lacks the low-end punch and mid-range grunt. The power delivery on the Polo 1.0 MPI is linear and it hits the 6500 RPM redline mark very cleanly. There are hardly any vibrations from the engine at idle but as you increase the rev count, one can feel the tremble from the 3-pot unit. The 5-speed gearbox on this car is very smooth but the clutch is quite jaunty.
Driving Dynamics – The ride quality of the car is good enough for most part but feels stiff at on sharp potholes and the handling is excellent. The steering of the car is light at the low speeds but as the speed increases the steering feels heavy. The vehicle is stable at high speeds and the brakes on the car are also well equipped. However, the 195 mm tyres on the Highline Plus trim offer great grip and it more than enough when we consider the less power output of the car.
Verdict – The new Volkswagen Polo 1.0 MPI lacks the excitement and performance that the rival cars available on the market offer. The Maruti Swift offers great performance and is cheaper than the Polo, but if you want to buy a petrol Polo, spend Rs. 2 lakhs more and get the Polo GT TSI.