This is the fifth-generation Volkswagen Polo, which features styling inspired by the new Scirocco and Mk6 Golf, and super-frugal petrol and diesel engines capable of 74mpg and 96g/km of CO2.
Unveiled in Geneva tonight, the new Polo is roomier and more sporty than the current model. The new car is based on the same platform as the new Seat Ibiza and Skoda Fabia. That shifts it up in size; at 3952mm and 1682mm, it's 36mm longer and 32mm wider than the outgoing version.
The standout styling feature is VW’s new front-end look, centred on a full-width lower grille and a narrower upper opening. Together, they widen the Polo's stance.
Bigger external dimensions translate into a wider and longer cabin, with shoulder and legroom improved from today’s car. And while the new Polo is 13mm lower than the outgoing car, VW claims more interior headroom. Boot space is up too, measuring 280 litres (952 litres with the rear seats folded down).
The key engines in the UK will be a brace of 1.2-litre three-cylinder motors with either 58bhp or 68bhp. Both models will return 51mpg and 128g/km of CO2; they are equipped as standard with five-speed manual gearboxes.
There is also a new 1.6-litre common-rail TDI diesel, with outputs of 73bhp and 87bhp. Also equipped with a five-speed manual as standard, these models both return 67mpg and 109g/km of CO2.
The headline economy model is the BlueMotion, which adds a suite of economy technologies, including longer gearing in third, fourth and fifth, to boost economy over the 1.6 TDI to 74mpg and 96g/km. VW is also using Geneva to preview the following generation of eco-Polo, which is said to offer fuel economy of 85mpg and just 87g/km of CO2. It's due to arrive in 2010.