2016 Volkswagen Polo GTI 1.8 turbo from UK and Ireland


Not disappointed


Nothing has gone wrong with the car yet.

General Comments:

After getting a really good deal, I ordered this car in February and it was delivered in April.

Spec is:

3 door manual and is Silk Blue

Cruise & park pack

Sport pack

Centre arm rest

App connect

The car looks similar to the Golf GTI, but is of course smaller with an engine 200cc less than the Golf. The price difference between the Polo GTI and Golf GTI was nearly £10,000. So a massive difference.

A few things have been carried over from the Golf GTI. Most notably the XDS differential lock; which works really well.

The interior seems to be good quality, with solid materials used. Rear seat space is decent for the size of the car, as is the boot. It will take a weeks worth of shopping or a couple of suitcases - no problem. The tartan seats are a feature I really like. They reasonably comfortable and certainly acceptable, but the M3 I had previously was a more comfortable car. I noticed this today when I drove the car for a solid 4 hours. Anyone wondering why I changed from an M3 to a Polo would been justified in their interest. It was due to the fact that I rarely drive anywhere other than the commute to work, and I was simply adding miles to the M3, and using copious amounts of petrol doing so.

The 1.8 turbo engine now feels nicely run in, and provides great flexibility in all gears. The turbo comes on properly around 1500 RPM, and power is available up to around 6000 RPM. However the engine will rev to 7200 RPM. 70 mph can be achieved in 2nd gear.

The engine in my opinion is the best part of the car. The diesel like torque it provides means you can really move up the road at reasonably low revs. The 6 speed boxes ratios seem well judged and the gear change feels nice and precise.

Sport mode is an option worth ticking. It stiffens up the suspension (and apparently lowers in by 15mm), weights up the steering, increases throttle response while allowing the turbo to spool up quicker. Engine noise is also increased in the cabin by a noise actuator. It's realistic, but does cause a vibration somewhere within the dashboard, which is very noticeable, annoying, and a common issue among Polo GTIs.

Things I don't like about the car are a matter of opinion, but include:

The wheels are a pain to clean, but worth it for the end result.

The red brake calipers are even more of a pain to clean.

The paint scratches too easily, it seems quite soft.

I can't find a way to change the radio preset stations from the steering wheel controls. You have to use the touch screen on the centre console.

If you turn the heater dial to cold, it automatically puts the air re-circulation and air con on.

When you get out of the car, you sometimes receive a nasty static shock when closing the door.

In wet conditions, the car doesn't allow much turbo boost in 1st or 2nd gear. To stop wheel spin I'm sure. Switching the ESC off cures this problem however.

Realistically you can expect up to 40 MPG, not 47.9 MPG as VW claim.

If your reading this because you're thinking about getting one, then I suggest you look no further. It's a great little car and perfectly suited to British roads. Granted, it's not as quick as an M3 or an RS4 or any other 300 BHP plus machine you can think of, but in my opinion is just as fun and can get down the road a lot quicker than your passengers, or most other road users expect!

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

Review Date: 19th June, 2016