New Volkswagen Polo R Line 2019 Review Interior Exterior.
The new Volkswagen Polo R-Line mixes low running costs with a dose of sporting style. While it isn’t as fun to drive as a Ford Fiesta or as fast as a Polo GTI, it sums up everything we love about the standard car – in a racier package. It is expensive, however, which largely negates the benefit of those low insurance premiums and cheaper tax bills. Cheaper models offer much better value for money.
Designed to offer the visual appeal of the high-end GTI but without the associated running costs, the R-Line is available with a choice of two lower-power (94bhp or 113bhp) petrol engines. Both are based around the tried and tested 1.0-litre TSI – and it’s the latter we’re testing here for the first time.
All R-Line models get unique styling, gloss black detailing, tinted rear windows and a sporty rear diffuser. There are special badges inside and out, alongside branded sports seats, R-Line sill plates and stainless steel pedals. Every version also gets air-con and all-round parking sensors, as well as an eight-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
Let’s first look at how much this Polo R-Line will cost you to buy and run. Fitted with the range-topping engine and DSG auto box, our car has a list price of £20,660; around £750 more than an equivalent SE L (or £12 per month) – but just £860 less than the much quicker Polo GTI. Cheaper SE and Polo Beats models are also available.
But while the R-Line might look expensive on paper, it trumps its GTI sibling hands down when it comes to fuel economy and CO2 emissions. You can reasonably expect at least 10mpg more from this R-Line model, and while the GTI is currently undergoing WLTP assessment, it’s likely to cost business users considerably more when it comes to Benefit in Kind company car tax.
Arguably the biggest difference, however, will be with regard to insurance premiums. The R-Line – even in top-spec 115PS DSG guise – falls into group 12, whereas the GTI sits in group 26. That’ll be a massive factor for younger drivers, who will likely be drawn to the cheaper car’s similarly sportier styling.
But if you can afford a little more per month, should you step up to the feisty Polo GTI, or does the R-Line do enough to satisfy the inner child of any wannabe boy racer?
Well, while it doesn’t feel enormously quick off the mark – you can blame the DSG box’s eco-focused gearing for that – it’s surprisingly punchy from a rolling start. Join a motorway from 40mph and the 1.0-litre TSI is pleasingly brisk, making light work of quick lane changes and spontaneous overtakes.
It isn’t as sharp as the GTI, however, and continues to trail the bog-standard Ford Fiesta for driving fun. The Polo doesn’t roll too much in the bends, but it simply can’t match its rival’s superior body control and crisp steering; the Polo’s set-up is just too light to offer any real feedback.
The polo will take care of you. With even more security assistants than his predecessor, he keeps an eye on everything that happens around you. He is the biggest eye-catcher on his own. The completely new design with low-lying side line, dynamic beads and newly designed headlamps ensures this all by itself. On every tour.
The Polo: reliable, safe and sporty. With its clear design language and elegant lines, he finds the perfect balance between design and function. He convinces with comfortable, safe and modern features. In short: the Polo makes you want to drive it.
Emphasize the athletic character of your polo.
Striking shapes and dynamic design – with the R-Line package you underline the distinctive features of your Polo. The black grained radiator grille and ventilation grilles and the black sill extension provide for an impressive appearance. The air inlets and the front bumpers with C-signature in R-Line design perfectly fit into the sporty appearance. Also striking: the design strips on the side panels and the radiator grille with R-Line logo. Completely independent, however, are the sporty diffuser with its chrome trim and the rear spoiler in high-gloss black. And even with the 16-inch alloy wheels Sebring included in the package or the optional 17-inch Bonneville, your Polo looks great.
As you get in the car, you will notice dynamic and sporty details: from the distinctive aluminum door sills with R-Line logo, the Shadow Steel Glossy inlays to the black headliner, the ambient lighting and the infotainment system with R-Line logo on the home screen , The sporty comfort seats in the front with R-Line logo and seat covers in fabric, Carbon Flag design, as well as seat back inside in microfibre San Remo reinforce the sporty touch in the interior and give your polo additional coolness. The decorative stitching in crystal gray, not only on the seats, but also on the shift lever sleeve, on the steering wheel and on the textile mats are particularly striking. The pedals in brushed stainless steel are a clear bond from racing.