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  Volkswagen Polo Sedan - First Drive  
- Saturday, April 21, 2012  By YS Khong  Bookmark and Share
 
 
 
     
The Polo Sedan is built on a completely different platform from the hatch

I wouldn’t say the Volkswagen Polo Sedan is a road burner, because that was not what it was designed for – it is designed to soak up the demand from people who just want a good car that is affordable, and is reliable and safe. These are not those who...

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The Polo Sedan is built on a completely different platform from the hatch
The Polo Sedan is built on a completely different platform from the hatch
Polo Sedan makes a nice family car.
Polo Sedan makes a nice family car.
1.6 litre engine promises 6.5 litres per 100 kilometres
1.6 litre engine promises 6.5 litres per 100 kilometres
The inside is typically Volkswagen
The inside is typically Volkswagen

I wouldn’t say the Volkswagen Polo Sedan is a road burner, because that was not what it was designed for – it is designed to soak up the demand from people who just want a good car that is affordable, and is reliable and safe. These are not those who want a car that must make zero to 100kph in under 10 seconds – these are people who want to get from A to B safely, but also want reasonable power in their cars for occasional high speed driving.
The Volkswagen Polo Sedan delivers all of the above – in addition, it also delivers German engineering, which is synonymous with high quality, high reliability, and of course, underlying it all, a Volkswagen is a continental car. And all for RM99, 888 – making the Polo Sedan the new entry level, and a very affordable car for the Volkswagen range here in Malaysia.
The Volkswagen Polo Sedan was launched last Thursday night (19 April 2012) by Volkswagen Group Malaysia in Langkawi, with simultaneous launches in every VW showroom across the country. The media launch on Langkawi Island was beamed to every showroom so that VW guests could view what was actually happening and the unveiling at the showrooms was done at the exact moment the Polo sedan appeared on stage in Langkawi. At the same time, millions of Malaysians watching the evening news on TV3, NTV7 and 8TV saw the launch of the Polo Sedan. It was a grand show, yet more proof of the fact the Volkswagen is serious about the Malaysian market.
The Volkswagen Polo sedan is equipped with a 1.6 litre, 16-valve, 105PS fuel injected engine with class-leading torque of 153Nm. Mated to the engine is a 6-speed automatic gearbox that helps to accelerate the Polo sedan from zero to 100 kph in 12.3 seconds while enabling a fuel consumption of only 6.5 litres per 100 kilometres (Combined cycle, NEDC). Available in 6 different colours, it will go head-on with the likes of the Toyota Vios, Honda City and any other model within the RM100k range.
In terms of value for money, the Polo Sedan, whilst being priced at a premium over its Japanese competitors, does offer four airbags (driver and front passenger and 2 side airbags), along with the givens such as ABS, and EBD. In addition, all four windows feature ‘one touch’ activation, something we only see in more expensive cars, and on top of it all is the German technology, engineering and quality that comes with every Volkswagen.
In terms of looks, the Polo sedan is more ‘establishment’; I don’t mean ‘old-fashioned’, as it looks quite good – it also looks like a real sedan, and not a hatchback with a tail added on to bring in those buyers who want a car with a boot. One of the reasons why it looks good is because the Polo sedan, although sharing the DNA of the Polo, is actually built on a different platform, with a longer wheelbase and a wider track. I have been told that although the body panels may look similar to the Polo hatchback, they are not interchangeable – what you are getting is a totally different body.
Driving the Polo sedan around on Langkawi Island, we did not have a chance to hit top speed of 183 kph, but it easy got up to 160 on a stretch where it was relatively safe to do so. This car does not have a turbocharger, and thus does not have the ‘kick’ that is associated with charged induction engines, but what it does have is a great seamless transmission that delivers smooth power all the way. The engine has a sweet spot at around 90 to 100 kph, where everything is super smooth and quiet, and with the engine just ticking over at a little more than 2000 rpm, it explains why the fuel economy is so good. Sound insulation is excellent, with very little noise from the outside, and there is virtually no wind noise while we were enjoying our cruise around the island. The 15-inch alloy wheels with corresponding size tyres provide good cushioning effect for the road shocks; at the same time, replacement cost will be kept to a minimum, although I will not be surprised if people ‘inch up’ one or two sizes.
I don’t suppose the Polo sedan would appeal to the types who would want a car like the Polo GTi, or the golf GTi – an out and out performance car the Polo sedan is not, but it will appeal to those who just want a good and safe car that is continental-made. Anyway, for those who want a little more excitement, there is always the Polo hatchback with the TSi engine, or the Polo GTi. The Polo sedan is here to fill up the gap for those who want something more establishment.
Overall handling is good, with the car being very sure-footed around the twisty roads near Pantai Cenang. If you are in a hurry, the Polo Sedan will respond to your throttle demands, but just remember that this car does not have the benefits of a turbo-charger. Under harsh acceleration, the engine does protest just a little, but nevertheless, it responds well – speed builds up quite quickly, and you can hit 160 quite easily. The best speed to drive the Polo Sedan is between 90 kph to 120 kph; this is when everything is very relaxed.
All things said and done, the Polo Sedan is a great package meant for those who want a small family sedan with good power (not sporty performance), excellent fuel economy, a safe car, and want to try out a continental car, perhaps for the first time.


     Picture Gallery
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Aw Editor with test car on Langkawi Island
Aw Editor with test car on Langkawi Island
15-inch wheels provide good cushioning effect on rough roads
15-inch wheels provide good cushioning effect on rough roads
Good legroom at the rear
Good legroom at the rear
6-speed transmission with tiptronic
6-speed transmission with tiptronic
Instrument panel, Polo Sedan
Instrument panel, Polo Sedan
Chip Yap kindly helped me with this moving shot!
Chip Yap kindly helped me with this moving shot!
The Polo handles well around corners - driving through courtesy of Chips Yap
The Polo handles well around corners - driving through courtesy of Chips Yap
 


 
 
 
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