This is the 2014 Volkswagen Polo – and you can be forgiven for not really noticing anything different as the changes are very subtle. First – the headlamps are now dual-beam units with a smoked effect. The bumper, fog lamps and airdam are new as well. At the rear the tail-lamps are slightly different as is the bumper with inset reflector strips. Flashy new 15-inch alloy wheels dominate the side profile of the car. However, the biggest change to this diesel Polo is the engine – the 1498 cc four cylinder diesel engine now replaces the earlier three cylinder unit in the earlier Polo diesels. Not only does it give the Polo more power – it also saves a lot on excise duty for those seeking performance. Volkswagen has made a very smart move by downsizing the engine of the new Polo to 1.5 litres from the 1.6 GT TDI.Now this 1.5 litre comes in all variants of the diesel Polo, and it hasn’t compromised too much from the fun that the GT TDI used to deliver. 230 Nm of torque, 90PS of power is still available in this Polo. And you still get that rush of power when you get over 2000 rpm. The Polo has always been a fun-to-drive car and the extra power available on all variants is a bonus. As far as the handling goes, this car is still pretty much fun to drive. It’s got an electronic power steering, but it has pretty decent feel from the road. The only thing is that the suspension is slightly on the stiffer side, so you feel almost every bump in the road kind of filter into the cabin. The good bits abound in the new Polo. Fit and finish is top class. Features include airbags on all variants of the car – making it one of the safest premium hatches in the country. Automatic climate control, parking sensors and Bluetooth equipped music system are part of the standard kit on the Highline variant.The other thing one would notice when you are driving the Polo is the refinement level. Volkswagen has done a good job of sound insulation and you don’t hear much of the engine noise inside the cabin. Neither do you hear much road noise. It’s pretty silent in here. Some changes to the interiors include a better looking multi information display that also shows engine temperature among other things such as gear shift display, outside temperature, average fuel consumption etc. The steering mounted audio and MID controls are also all new, as is the flat-bottomed leather wrapped steering wheel. The interiors are now dual tone beige
and black, but space is still a concern in the rear seat, while boot space is fairly generous. Fuel efficiency is a claimed 20.14 kmpl and we got over 15 kilometres per litre with regular driving. Overall, even though the Polo Highline diesel at 7.37 lakh rupees ex-showroom Delhi is a bit pricey, enthusiasts would find this much better value for money as it incorporates the best of everything – good power, decent mileage and a nice feature list.There aren’t many compromises with this car, really. .