FORD FIESTA ST drivers take note: Volkswagen is launching a hot new version of the Polo GTI that will leave you standing at the lights.
The new model, to be unveiled at the Paris show and due in the UK next spring, manages a 0-62mph sprint in 6.7 seconds – a crucial 0.2 seconds (in other words, a lifetime) faster than the Fiesta. Not only that, it runs out of puff at 146mph, leaving your Ford, with its measly 139mph top speed, eating its dust.
But the mini-missile also gives the Golf GTI, its larger and much more expensive sister car, a run for its money, being just 0.2 seconds slower from 0-62mph, and 5mph slower at full tilt. Cheekily, it shares the Golf GTI’s trademark tartan seat fabric, too.
The secret of the Polo GTI’s performance is its 1.8-litre TSI engine, in place of the previous model’s 1.4-litre powerplant. The new unit yields 189bhp and 236lb ft torque ‒ 11bhp and 52lb ft more than the smaller, outgoing engine.
As before, the Polo GTI is available in three and five-door forms but this time it offers the option of a six-speed manual gearbox, in addition to the previously available seven-speed DSG automatic.
Prices have yet to be revealed but are expected to start at around £19,800.