Volkswagen Polo best

small GTI

Volkswagen Polo GTI, front
Volkswagen Polo GTI, front, static
Volkswagen Polo GTI, side
Volkswagen Polo GTI, rear
Volkswagen Polo GTI, interior
Volkswagen Polo GTI, boot

IT might be smaller than its big brother the Golf but VW's Polo GTI is a more complete all rounder for my money.

Driving this fantastic pocket rocket is like a win on the lotto.

Not only does it have the most electrifying performance but it handles like a thoroughbred and still manages to include a comfortable ride over almost every surface.

That's a real plus in any hot hatch - most of which come with hard suspension that has you bouncing around like popcorn in the pan.

The 1.8 turbo engine boasts 192bhp of smooth, tractable power that will go down to very low revs in sixthgear and pull easily away.

But wind this gem of a power unit up and it gives a kick in the back like a jet plane, launching the car towards the horizon with the kind of tuneful sound that is nectar to all driving enthusiasts.

It has more than enough power for the safest and swiftest of overtaking on any straight stretch, and there's enough urge in top gear for almost every manoeuvre on the motorway.

Motorway? What am I saying. This car was made for real roads. If I owned one I'd always want to enjoy the drive there and back.

The steering is perfect, direct and positive at all times, the chassis balance is an absolute delight and the level of grip through the corners is astonishing - at least on the dry roads while I had it.

The cabin is a little sombre in black, but as we've come to expect from VW, it is high quality and beautifully designed.

About the only thing lacking is rear legroom behind a taller driver, which is at a premium.

The GTI comes with air con, cruise control, reach and rake adjustable steering, CD player with MP3, alloys, Bluetooth, six airbags, and stability and traction control.


Price: £18,095

Mechanical: 192bhp, 1,798cc, 4cyl petrol engine driving front wheels via 6-speed manual gearbox

Max Speed: 146mph

0-62mph: 6.7 seconds

Combined MPG:47

Insurance Group: 29

C02 emissions: 139g/km

Bik rating: 22%

Warranty: 3yrs/ 60,000 miles

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