1997 Volkswagen Polo L 1.0 from UK and Ireland


Needed a new water pump after only one week. Dealer managed to scratch paintwork while fitting this - no apology given either.

Lock cylinder covers broke after one week.

Lots of interior rattles from radio, dash, door panels.

Badly fitting air vents.

Handbrake light stopped working after a few months.

Broke down after 14.5K miles, only 13 months old due to a broken distributer cap; fixed under warranty, but the dealer managed to damage the catalyst at same time so second trip was needed to repair this - again discourteous staff and unhelpful attitude.

Rattle from engine on cold start now makes car sound like a diesel!!

Tape deck has become unreliable as well.

General Comments:

Overall, a great package, good looker, nice design. Pity about unreliability, dodgy build quality and poor stereo system (tape deck often refuses to play and only 2 speakers).

An unmitigated disaster on wheels - hope to have better luck with a trade in Audi or Peugeot - no more Polos for us!!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 31st May, 1999

1997 Volkswagen Polo 1.4 from UK and Ireland


Rattling dashboard, almost coming apart.

Back wiper noisy, water has stopped coming out of nozzle.

General Comments:

Excellent resale on all mk4 Polo's, better value for money than a Golf.

Super long distance economy.

I have driven it in every county in Ireland, never a hint of any mechanical problems.

Holds the road well, sober performance, most suitable for cruising.

Still the best small car in the world.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 31st January, 1999

1997 Volkswagen Polo 16v 1.4 16v petrol from UK and Ireland



General Comments:

Generally the car is good. Good that is if you don't really want a sporty car to drive. Just pretend the 16v badge on the back isn't really there and you won't get yourself into any trouble. However, if you push this little VW group B success story things start to get interesting. The engine is quite capable with 100bhp, it's just a shame the chassis isn't. In fact it is very poor and at times down right dangerous.

It would be true to say the engine out performs the car, which does not inspire you with confidence when approaching a bend at speed, in slightly wet conditions. Understeer by the bucketload, and a back end that wants to go in the opposite direction to the rest of the car, quite literally.

In the dry this car can be fun, in the wet you're asking for big trouble, get the bus, take a brolly and walk, just don't think of driving it like a 16V.

Such a shame as the car is so well made and solid as a rock. Steering is as responsive as an arm you fell asleep on and cut the blood circulation to. The gear ratios are so close you would think you were in a sports car and all the smooth gearbox does is make the the engine rev high, hold back your progress in terms of mph, and give you a higher motorway mpg than is necessary. You really do feel the lack of an extra ratio on the motorway, or should I say the lack of a sensibly proportioned gearbox. Slower, or less powerful cars, with better handling will leave you behind on a windy road in moist conditions. The weather in Manchester is often moist to say the least. I'm gonna change my name to Nancy cos' I bought a 16V and end up driving like a Nancy 80 percent of the time.

It's a shame as it is such an attractive car: built to last, not to dash. A GTi version is planned for 1999. Don't even go there is my advice.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 18th October, 1998