Take it easy – the revised Polo shows how easy it can be


Ah, for the simple life. It was just great to sit in the revised Volkswagen Polo and not have to worry about battery charges or faulty interfaces. And there were no qualms about riding around town with a big, bulky frame.

That said, the more you think about it, the more ridiculous it becomes that we have mega-sized cars in our cities that take up a lane and a half. It’s really.

I’m beginning to take a strong position (that would be a first) on this issue.

I think it’s madness. Coming from Rathmines to the N11 earlier and just couldn’t believe how many and large SUVs and large SUVs all tried, many failed to stay in their lane because the latter are too narrow and the former too big.

I swear I only had the thickness of a feather to dodge those giants coming the other way. And don’t forget I was in a “baby” Polo, a car whose footprint is dwarfed by a high proportion of fellow passengers.

So I think we have to do something. The knee-jerk response is to ban passenger cars over a certain size from certain streets, the narrowness of which dictates this kind of dramatic action.

It can be done easily, it would just have to be seen as enforceable. And I’m not sure it would be.

The alternatives are few and far between. You could ban cars over a certain size from parts of urban areas, but what about families who need them?

At first glance, the real culprits are the single-passenger SUVs. But in many cases these SUVs are the family car at the weekend and/or after work.

I don’t have a solution, but I’m increasingly amazed at how big the problem has become – and only getting worse.

We wouldn’t worry if most of the cars registered in our cities were Polo dimensions.

Do you remember the term “town car”? It used to allude to micro engines for city traffic. Maybe we should encourage them. Or is it too late?

Whatever the case, my time in Polo led to a deepening belief that action was warranted in the not-too-distant future.

I drove the Polo because it was modernized and it had been a long time since I had driven one. Refreshing is always good. This one looks a little better – sharper, I suppose.

It was such an easy car to drive and so easy to access the info displays. One great thing about the dashboard is that it doesn’t have the messy sliders for volume and such that we have to endure with the Golf. I can never get used to that.

So I just took it nice and easy as I drove around knowing there was nothing to note, no surprises.

Well, the Polo hasn’t changed much in the course of its makeover, but sometimes that doesn’t matter.

What really matters is that you, as a potential buyer, feel like you’re getting some level of differentiation and an upgrade of elements to show it’s a 2022 car. You can point to a few design touches on the outside just to spice things up a bit and it created that visual distinction.

There are redesigned front and rear lights, which are LED and are now standard in the range.

Progressive lighting and a new bumper design come as standard. And I had the bubbly little 95hp 1.0 TSI turbo engine that’s now in the ‘Life’ trim of the Polo. I feel it was about creating more technical standard across the range than anything else. This is to keep up with or stay ahead of the competition in a competitive market.

The digital cockpit, for example, is now included in all models.

And there’s even more driving assistance technology as part of the extended standard equipment: Lane Assist is paired with Front Assist.

There’s also a range of optional technologies that didn’t exist before – like Side Assist, Park Assist and IQ Matrix LED headlights.

So all in all, there are plenty of little things you can’t see or feel that are important safety elements, especially for a car of this size.

I’ve always loved the Polo as a car to drive (especially around town, as you’ll have noticed) and I still do. The 95 hp engine is just a good match for this size and type of engine. As said, its simplicity is its trump card. It works as a package, although the price is steep enough.

I have to hope that now that everything is going to be electrified, if they give us an electric Polo or equivalent (whatever they’re called) they’ll keep things as simple and straightforward as the one I just drove. Take it easy – the revised Polo shows how easy it can be

Fry Electronics Team

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