VOLKSWAGEN POLO HISTORY
The Volkswagen Polo is a car produced by the German manufacturer Volkswagen since 1975. It is sold in Europe and other markets worldwide in hatchback, sedan and estate variants. The Polo has been produced in six generations.
The first Polo was effectively a rebadged version of the Audi 50 hatchback launched in August 1974. The Audi 50 was discontinued in 1978 as Audi concentrated on larger luxury models. The Mk1 and Mk2 versions of the Polo were then standalone models in the Volkswagen range.
First generation (Typ 86; 1975–1981)
The first-generation Polo, a rebadged version of the Audi 50, was introduced in 1975 and was produced until October 1981.By 1979, 500,000 Polos were produced worldwide. It shared the internal designation Typ 86 with the Audi 50.
The differences between the Audi and Volkswagen models were minor, with the Polo being cheaper and much more basic. The two cars were initially sold alongside each other, but the Audi 50 never sold as well, and was withdrawn in 1978. The Polo was manufactured at the Volkswagen plant in Wolfsburg.
In 1977, the Derby saloon was released, which was simply a Polo, identical to the hatchback from the C pillar forward, with a large boot attached.
The Polo Mk1 was available with the following engines:
- 895 cc, straight 4 petrol (hatchback only)
- 1,093 cc straight 4 petrol, 37 kW (50 hp)
- 1,272 cc, straight 4 petrol
The Polo Mk1 and Derby were facelifted in 1979, first presented at the 1979 Amsterdam Motor Show. Sometimes referred to as the Polo Mk1F, the facelifted model featured plastic bumpers, a different front grille and a revised dashboard. The round headlights of the Derby were replaced with square ones, bringing it in line with the similar (but larger) Golf-based Jetta sedan.
Second generation (Typ 86C; 1981–1994)
The Polo Mk2 (or Typ 86C) was introduced in October 1981, with the major change being the introduction of a third body style with a steep (almost vertical) rear window, in addition to a version resembling the original Mk1 shape with a diagonal rear window. These two body styles were called the Wagon (in some markets) and Coupé respectively, although in fact both were three-door hatchbacks, and in some markets the Wagon designation was not used, with that car being simply called the “Volkswagen Polo” without a suffix. The sedan version was now called the Polo Classic, and the Derby name became extinct. Production was expanded to Spain in the mid-1980s following Volkswagen’s takeover of SEAT. By 1983, the one millionth Polo was produced. The second million were produced by 1986.
The Polo Mk2 was available with the following engines:
- 1,093 cc straight-4 petrol (1981–1983)
- 1,272 cc straight-4 petrol (1981–)
- 1,043 cc straight-4 petrol (1983–)
- 1,272 cc straight-4 petrol with a Pierburg 2E3 carburettor producing 41 kW (55 hp) (1983–1990). Coupe S in UK, GT elsewhere in Europe
- 1.272 cc straight-4 petrol with multi-point fuel injection producing 55 kW (74 hp) (1991–). GT version only.
- 1,272 cc straight-4 supercharged petrol with 83 kW (111 hp). ( G40 version 1987 only)
- 1.3 L straight-4 diesel (1986–)
- 1.4 L straight-4 diesel (1990–)
Third generation (Typ 6N/6KV; 1994–2002)
The Mark III Polo or Typ 6N, (sometimes referred to as the “Mark 4” by enthusiasts as it is the Polo’s fourth guise) appeared in 1994, and was a completely new model (on a new chassis), available as three- and five-door hatchback versions, the latter making VW the last major European manufacturer to finally offer rear side doors in this class. It shared its platform with the SEAT Ibiza Mark 2. This platform actually used the floorpan of the Volkswagen Golf Mk3 (a multitude of mechanical parts and all of the suspension components were interchangeable among the three models). Although the dashboard and a number of mechanical components, including engines, were shared with the Ibiza, outwardly the two cars were different, with no shared body panels.
The car was available with the following engines:
- 1,043 cc straight-4 petrol 33 kW (45 PS) (1995–96)
- 1,272 cc straight-4 petrol 40 kW (55 PS) (1995–96)
- 1.6 L straight-4 petrol 55 kW (75 PS) (Engine Code – AEE)
- 1.4 L straight-4 16-valve petrol 74 kW (100 PS) (Engine Code – AFH)
- 1.4 L straight-4 petrol 60 PS (44 kW)(1996–)
- 999 cc straight-4 petrol 50 PS (37 kW) — all-new aluminium block multi-point injection (1996–)
- 1.6 L straight-4 16-valve petrol 88 kW (120 PS) (LHD European GTI model only)
- 1.6 L straight-4 petrol 74 kW (100 PS) (6K saloon and estate models only)
- 1.6 L straight-4 petrol 55 kW (75 PS) (6K saloon and estate models only)
- 1.9 L straight-4 diesel 47 kW (64 PS)
Fourth generation (Typ 6Q/9N/9N3; 2002–2009)
The all new Mark IV (or Typ 9N, sometimes erroneously referred to as the “Mark 4”) model was put on sale in early 2002. The car is all new compared to the Mark III/F, and bears structural resemblance to Golf MK4 (1J). The rear taillights resemble that of the B5.5 Passat. Outwardly the most recognisable change is the use of quad round headlights similar to the Lupo’s.
Volkswagen Racing rallyed a Polo S1600 in the 2003 Junior World Rally Championships, winning the Turkish round. The Super 1600 developed 165 kW (221 hp)/215 to its front wheels. This version of the Polo was a mixed success in the United Kingdom. It sold reasonably well (though not as well as some earlier Polos) but several customer satisfaction surveys by high-profile motoring magazines such as Top Gear gave the Polo a very low rating.
The car was available with the following engines:
- 1.2 L straight-3 6-valve petrol, 55 PS 40 kW (54 hp)
- 1.2 L straight-3 12-valve petrol, 65 PS 47 kW (63 hp)
- 1.4 L straight-4 16-valve petrol, 75 PS 59 kW (79 hp)
- 1.4 L straight-4 16-valve petrol Fuel Stratified Injection, 86 PS 62 kW (83 hp) (FSI-badged model)
- 1.4 L straight-4 16-valve petrol, 100 PS 74 kW (99 hp) (16V-badged model).
- 1.4 L straight-3 TDI, 75 PS 55 kW (74 hp).
- 1.9 L straight-4 SDI, 64 PS 47 kW (63 hp)
- 1.9 L straight-4 TDI PD, 100 PS 74 kW (99 hp)
- 1.9 L straight-4 TDI PD, 130 PS 96 kW (129 hp) (GT model only).
- 1.6 L straight-4, 8-valve petrol, 74 kW (101 PS), cast-iron block, very short manual gearbox (Brazilian / South African market)
- 2.0 L straight-4, 8-valve petrol, 85 kW (115 PS), cast-iron block, very short manual gearbox (Brazilian / South African market)
Fifth generation (Typ 6R/6C/61; 2009–2018)
Volkswagen launched the fifth generation Polo (internal designation Typ 6R) at the Geneva Motor Show in March 2009. For the first time in Polo’s history, the car was declared European Car of the Year, for 2010.The Polo Mark V is 44 mm longer and 32 mm wider and sits 13 mm lower to the road than the previous generation Polo. Boot capacity is increased by 10 litres to 280 litres of storage space with 952 litres with the seats folded down. The car is 7.5% lighter than its predecessor. The Polo has thorax airbags and has been awarded a five-star Euro NCAP crash impact rating
- 1.2L straight-3 12-valve petrol, 51 kW (70 PS) and 55 kW (75 PS)
- 1.2L turbocharged straight-4 8-valve petrol, 66 kW (90 PS) and 77 kW (105 PS)
- 1.4L straight-4 16-valve petrol, 63 kW (85 PS)
- 1.4L turbocharged straight-4 16-valve petrol, 100 kW (140 PS)
- 1.4L twincharger straight-4 16-valve petrol, 130 kW (180 PS)
- 1.6L straight-4 16-valve petrol, 77 kW (105 PS)
- 1.2L turbocharged straight-3 12-valve diesel, 55 kW (75 PS)
- 1.6L turbocharged straight-4 16-valve diesel, 66 kW (90 PS) and 77 kW (105 PS)
Sixth generation (Typ AW; 2018–present)
The car comes with a range of 1.0 3 cylinder engines with various outputs; 1.0 65PS and 75PS normally aspirated versions, a natural gas powered 1.0 TGI producing 89PS – as well as 95PS and 115PS TSI options. There is also the option of the new 1.5 TSI “EVO” engine producing 150PS. The GTI model gets a 200PS 2.0 TSI engine. The 1.6 TDI engine is also available with 80PS and 95PS outputs. Boot space has increased by about 25 percent from 280 litres to 351 litres. Optionally, it now features the 2nd generation version of the Active Info Digital Display Cockpit which is a first in its class. As standard, the car comes with front collision detection, blindspot assist and emergency stopping. The car is said to be extremely customizable coming in 14 colours, and 17 dashboard colours.
|Body and chassis|
|Body style||5-door hatchback
|Platform||Volkswagen Group MQB A0|
7-speed DSG automatic
|Wheelbase||2,564 mm (100.9 in)|
|Length||4,053 mm (159.6 in)|
|Width||1,780 mm (70.1 in)|
|Height||1,448 mm (57.0 in)|