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Most auto manufacturers are opting out of continuing to use larger, inefficient engines and replacing them with motors of much lower capacity to meet strict emission rules. VW has done something similar on its Polo and put in a 1.2-litre, three-cylinder motor.
Called the EA211, it is a naturally aspirated 999cc unit that makes 76hp; this is a similar power figure in spite of it being smaller. However, where the motor heavily lacks is in terms of torque, it only produces 95Nm compared to the 1.2’s 110Nm.
The New Polo is also lighter, but not by a lot, the kerb weight is down by 14kg over the 1.2. However, this doesn’t change the performance; there is still a considerable delay when you push the throttle. The small engine means overtaking has to be calculated, owing to the lack of mid-ranch punch. The new car is also slow going towards redline, and throughout it misses out on any performance peaks.
The 0-100kph time of 16.5 seconds means, the 1.0 has a similar time as the 1.2. This engine also sounds extremely refined, similar to Maruti’s motor at lower revs. However, at higher rpms the motor does begin to rattle and has the typical three-cylinder sound. The car also has a claimed fuel efficiency increase of 2.31kpl, taking the total to 18.78kpl. The gearbox on the car is a five-speed unit and it has smooth throws.
The variant we drove was the Highline Plus, which is the highest-spec model and features an all-black theme with a new brown and black interior. These seats are comfortable, and this time around, the car also comes with an armrest. But, this armrest does come in the way while going through the gears. The quality of materials remains high and the insides are well put together.
Furthermore, the car comes well equipped in terms of features; it gets dual airbags, ABS, dimming mirrors, and an infotainment system that features Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. The hatchback also rides on 16-inch rims shod with 195mm tyres.
This new version of the car is a big update in a long time and not a great one at that. VW hasn’t moved the game ahead with the Polo. Competition like Hyundai and Suzuki offer much nicer petrol motors. The Polo has now begun showing its age in many ways, however if you are considering getting one, we would suggest that you extend your budget and get the GT TSI.
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