The Volkswagen Polo R will be revealed in final production form at the Geneva motor show in March, R&D chief Ulrich Hackenberg has confirmed. The launch of the new 225bhp hot hatch will coincide with VW’s entry into next year’s World Rally Championship.

Power for the Polo R, which was first previewed as the WRC Street concept at the GTI Treffen festival in Austria last year, will use a tuned version of the Mk6 Golf GTI’s 2.0-litre turbo engine.

The new model will be front-wheel drive only but is set to be offered with a mechanical limited-slip differential. A 0-62mph time of about 6.0sec has been mooted, along with a top speed of 150mph.

Hackenberg revealed that a Polo R was not in the supermini’s original launch schedule, but VW’s rally engineers wanted to produce a road car to help promote the rally car and, having come up with the WRC Street concept, bosses were convinced of the need to closely link the road and rally car programmes.

A Golf R model is also in development, according to Hackenberg, and is due in 2013-2014. He said it would get a “good, powerful 2.0-litre engine”, likely to be a 276bhp version of the Mk7 Golf GTI’s new 2.0-litre turbo unit.