The Good, The Bad and The Ugly - Volkswagen Polo Highline 1.2L Pe...
This Sunday, i got the oppurtunity to test drive a Volkswagen Polo 1.2L Petrol Highline version. The Polo looks equally great from the front, back and from the sideways. It is low slung and looks like a sports car indeed, particularly in those red and white colors. It has a large glass area and the black and beige two tone interior make you feel that it indeed has a lots of space. The highline comes with 15 alloy wheels. Built quality is great. Slightly better than Ford Figo, but not as great as Fiat Grande Punto. Polo's interior is two tone and looks pleasant. But doesn't feel luxurious like the Hyundai i20. I felt that the interior quality matches with Ford Figo but with a much better fit and finish. Perhaps the two tone effect may give you a feel that its has better interiors than Figo. I just felt that the plastic quality on the highline isn't looking that premium. The front seats are awesome. They just hug you in your driving position. Steering adjustment is available and is a good feature. The A pillar doesnt block your view during a right turn. However, the dashboard is a bit high and if you are short and looking for the trendline and comfortline versions without the driver seat height adjustment feature. You must be careful in those jam packed traffic sessions. There is sufficient space for 2 people at the rear. But the large hump protruded from the bottom makes the 3rd passenger uncomfortable in the rear seat. The boot is big too. First i drove this car without a/c and the windows open. I started the engine..... and asked the salesperson whether it is a diesel or petrol car. Because, It's quite noisy with the windows open. Close the windows and its silent inside. But the gear level, dash still vibrate slightly. I just felt like driving a diesel car. But this is a petrol one.The 1.2L petrol engine, has good pep in it. Unlike the Old 1.3 Swift (i didn't drive the K series yet) and the new i20, this one has good pickup at low speeds. You can drive happily in the 3rd gear at city speeds. One thing worth mentioning is the gear box is super smooth and the in gear acceleration is great. The engine pulls cleanly in every gear. Even with the A/c on and 4 people onboard, this car cleanly pulled up to 140 kmph and I just felt that it can reach 160 kmph easily. Brakes are superb with great feed back. The ride comfort is good for both driver and the rear passengers - Good suspension. Straight line Stability is awesome and you will still feel confident even at 140 kmph. It behaves well at curves and corners too. But it doesn't talk too much to you like the Figo and Punto. Electric Power Assisted Steerings can never match the feedback of the Hydraulic Steerings - Period. But, the steering is very easy to use while parking and in traffic for its lightness. Now the bad part is the engine lliterally roars like hell once you cross that 5000 rpm for power. The sales person says that, it is a sporty tone. I just asked myself, does that sound sporty?? You feel that the Figo and i20 are more refined than Polo in the engine department. The road noise can be felt from the bottom on bad roads. Bottom insulation is poor. i20 has the most silent cabin. The test drive car was fully r_ped. the tyres saythat the car has already travelled atleast 30000 km, All sorts of rattles and squeaks can be heard from doors, dashboard, bootlid, rear B pillar. The rattles and squeaks may be because of the abuse caused to the demo car but those upteen number of test drives. I just told the sales person that You just don't know how to create a good impression of a product to the customer. What i liked: Looks, Built quality, two tone interior, good glass area and overall view of the road, Superb A/c, good low end and mid range pick up (0-120 kmph) even with A/c, What i didn't like: Simply it is noisy (Both engine and cabin), A/c blower is also noisy (except in level 1) and It's pricey.... Except the Trendline, no other version is value for money. Surprisingly, the best and worst part of the Polo is its Engine itself. Take a test drive to check whether it impresses you or irritates you? Other irritating facts are For Trendline and Comfortline variants, Volkswagen doesn't allow you to upgrade to 15 wheels, alloys, they don't allow after market rear power windows, Fog lamps, remote locking, music player. And they don't even offer these accessories themselves for these variants. If you do so, it voids the warranty. Hell what is a premium car without those accessories. It is clear they are more interested in branding than numbers. But they are selling a cheap car than their own Fabia (which really feels a premium car) at a far higher price. Some people buy cars for A to B travel, some are Value for money oriented, some treat their car as a status symbol, some decide upon the looks, some decide on the ride and handling and some decide on power. i am a VFM guy.Except for its looks and the hype as a German car, Polo doesn't worth the money when compared to its competition. If you have enough dough, Go for Hyundai i20 or Fabia instead. Finally, It's purely my personal opinion. Take a comprehensive test drive before you decide.
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