1986 Volkswagen Polo CL 1.3 petrol from UK and Ireland


Perfect first car or cheap runaround



Wear and tear items.

Occasionaly mixture adjustment on the carb.

General Comments:

This was my first car, picked up for next to nothing and kept long after it had been replaced by much more sophisticated cars simply because it was such a good workhorse.

In the time I have had it the car has received what can generously be described as sporadic servicing and brutal treatment. It was often loaned out to friends for extended periods and has not once failed to start or stranded anyone, apart from a bout of overheating during a 100 mile flat out run down the autobahn. It was off the end of the speedo at this point, so I think we'll let that one slide.

I had the use of a 1.0 L car at one stage, which had only 4 gears and obviously a bit less power. Still a great car, but I missed the extra gear on the motorway. Also, the higher spec cars come with a 4 headlamp arrangement which is less like a match in a hurricane and more like a damp candle in a jar.

Any criticism? Well, it was a tad thirstier than I was expecting, but with the poor servicing and the way it was driven that is to be expected. It did develop odd patches of rust in the middle of panels, but compared to a Fiesta or Metro of the same age it couldn't be faulted for rust. I did have some concerns about it's crashworthyness, but that's going to be an issue in any old, small car.

I cannot recommend these cars highly enough as a cheap and cheerful runaround or first car. The handling was secure, it had enough power not to be a liability, the heater worked well and it was easy to drive. Everyone who borrowed it commented on what a superb (if ugly) little car it was. In the end it needed a couple of hundred quids worth of work to get it through the MOT, and I didn't really have enough use for it to justify it. A sad day.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 16th November, 2008

1986 Volkswagen Polo Ranger 1.3 petrol from UK and Ireland


Cars don't really get more reliable than the MK2 polo.


The Car occasionally takes a few times to start. This is because the fast idle speed of the automatic choke is set too low. Once started though it never stops!

General Comments:

Cars don't really get more reliable than the MK2 polo, and this is one of the best models that made it over here.

The polo Ranger is the hatchback equivalent of the coupe S which means it benefits from the 1.3 liter engine with 5 speed gearbox, as well as some nice interior touches such as sports seats with beefy side supports. A sports steering wheel and last, but not least a rev counter. The one I own also has the optional sunshine roof.

Its no rocket ship, but it's a good solid car that gets me from A to B with very little fuss. Acceleration is adequate and is capable of cruising at 90mph on the motorway.

Fuel economy could be better, I've owned several of the later polos with fuel injected engines and those are very good on fuel when compared to this car (33mpg compared with 40+.) It's very economical on long journeys, but the short journeys bring it down considerably.

Also worth mentioning is this particular car was built in Germany and the build quality is far superior to that of later models.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 5th January, 2005

1986 Volkswagen Polo C Formel E 1.3 from UK and Ireland


An ideal first car



1. Driver seat had a large hole were it was worn through.

2. Rear wash/wipe stopped working. Quite a common fault with these cars. Normally the wires break were it feeds from the car body into the boot lid, but in my case not just that, but the the wiper motor had fallen apart inside. This was quite easy the dismantle and repair.

3. Clutch cable very noisy and stiff to use. Running oil down it helped, but still needed replacing.

4. Rocker cover gasket started to leak oil not too bad, but could do with replacing before to long.

5. external drivers door trim had come away from the door easily stuck down and purely cosmetic.

General Comments:

Ugly it maybe, but this car was cheap to buy is cheap to run. and it is not to slow neither.

An extremely reliable car that is very solid and rust proof. The engine runs well and seems as if it will go on for many more miles.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 2nd January, 2003