The new, more focused underpinnings will also be lighter than the current Polo's, helping to boost efficiency across the range.
The next Polo will be available with small-capacity turbocharged engines, including an entry-level naturally aspirated three-cylinder petrol unit with around 75bhp. Turbocharged versions of the same engine will sit above this, with up to 115bhp on offer.
The future Polo will also ditch its 1.4 and 1.6-litre petrol units for a 1.5-litre one with up to 160bhp on offer. The diesel line-up will likely be made up of turbocharged four-cylinder units offering 90-130bhp.
More power for the Polo GTI
The Polo line-up will be headed by a new and more powerful Volkswagen Polo GTI model. The future hot hatch is likely to use an evolved version of the current car’s 1.8-litre TSI engine, but output is expected to rise beyond that car’s 189bhp and 236lb ft of torque. The power boost should help the Polo GTI keep up with rivals such as Renault’s recently updated Clio RS and the next-gen Ford Fiesta ST.
Sources say the next Polo GTI could inherit more standard performance parts, bringing it closer into line with its sharper sibling, the Ibiza Cupra, which currently comes with adjustable dampers as standard.
The GTI is also expected to retain an XDS electronic locking differential system, which is shared with the Cupra and uses the brakes to tighten the car’s line through corners.
Like the today's model, the next-gen GTI is also likely to retain both its manual and automatic gearbox options. The Ibiza Cupra dropped its automatic option in the UK, but sales of automatic Polos have been stronger.
Spy pictures of the GTI test mule (shown above) suggest the model has been given the same restrained styling as the current car, with only large-diameter wheels and a twin-exit exhaust system being clear signifiers of the car’s performance potential.
This design direction is unsurprising because the Ibiza Cupra has typically been the car from this Volkswagen Group family to flaunt the sportiest design. The Polo GTI has tended to mimic its larger sibling, the Golf GTI, with a more mature appearance.
The Polo's smaller sibling, the Volkswagen Up, will also spawn a GTI model.