Brilliant build quality and reliability continue to shine through the entire range.
The host of additional extras like touchscreen satellite navigation add a touch of class.
Plenty of storage space in the boot.
The GTi and the other 16 valve options all offer good sporty performance.
Great safety ratings, as we've come to expect from a modern supermini. - - Six airbags as standard should offer real peace of mind.
The handling and ride are good, but not great. Only the Polo GTi offers a truly great driving experience.
Engine noise can be a little much during acceleration, this is especially the case with the diesel powerplants.
It's a little boring when compared to the more innovative competition.
The fifth generation Volkswagen Polo has built on the previous success of the range extremely well. The latest incarnation was released in 2009 and with it's "mini-golf" looks lacks no visual appeal. Awards swiftly followed as it picked up the 2010 European Car of the Year Award as well as the 2010 Car of the Year Award at the New York Auto Show.
Available in three and five door formats the Polo ranks were bolstered by the pseudo-offroad looking Crossroad model. The aggressive yet stylish looks that define the range are complimented nicely by the Crossroads robust bumpers and widened arches. The engine selection is small but solid with the range containing a choice of torquey and reliable 1.2, 1.4 and 1.6 litre powerplants. The 1.4 litre 16 valve is the sportiest of the bunch whilst the presence of the 178 bhp Polo GTi offers a tempting choice for anyone fond of real hot hatches. The inspiring model of the range could well be the Bluemotion model, which combines nice performance for a 1.2 litre diesel with an incredible fuel consumption figure in excess of 60 MPG. The BlueGT offers similar savings on fuel economy with a modest increase in power to boot.
Trim levels run follow a standardised pattern running though S, Match, SE and SEL, all of which have air con. The more upmarket R-line and R-line Style models offer genuinely sumptuous surroundings with neat touches abounding. It's a bit plain when compared to the Fiesta or Rio though. Interior space is average for the class though the boot is of generous proportion beating the Ford Fiesta and making the Volkswagen Polo a feasible choice for any small family.
The fight for top supermini spot has never been fiercer and the Polo is definitely a contender. Indeed, only the Ford Fiesta and Kia Rio offer real overall competition. There are some things which could have been done better though. Despite being based on the same platform as the latest Seat Ibiza it would be fair to say the Ibiza has the better handling of the two, with Volkswagen's engineering experiences there's no excuse for that. Yet when it comes to reliability, fuel consumption and a pretty face it's hard to fault the Polo. If there's one phrase that sums up the latest Polo it's "a safe bet". You know exactly what you're getting and people like that.