What is it?
Time waits for no man. Or car. In the time since we road tested the current Volkswagen Polo and declared it top of the supermini class, quite a few new or thoroughly refreshed rivals have entered the fray.
So it’s facelift time for the Polo. Its design is awkwardly caught between VW’s older, more rectilinear design language and the more recent swoopy monobrow style first seen on the Mk8 Golf, which makes the fussier headlights and bigger tail-lights sit slightly uneasy on the more restrained body.
VW has also revised the trim levels with more kit fitted as standard. Not counting the GTI, there are just three: Life, Style and R-Line. The cheapest Polo, costing £17,885, is now a Life with a 79bhp naturally aspirated 1.0-litre, but really you want at least the 94bhp turbocharged version costing £18,825, which can be paired with a seven-speed DSG dual-clutch automatic as well as a five-speed manual. There is also a 108bhp DSG-only version, which is solely an R-Line model and costs £23,355.
Whichever version you choose, it’s one of the most expensive non-hybrid superminis, so it makes sense that VW estimates 60% of UK Polos will have the 94bhp engine, and 75% will be Life trim. Helpfully, our test car is both.