What is it?
As the adverts proclaim, this is “the new Volkswagen Polo”. That seems a bit of a stretch when you consider that the latest revisions to Volkswagen's supermini include neither alterations to the exterior sheet metal nor to the lights and plastic bumpers, which are the more usual candidates for facelift revisions.
Instead, VW has concentrated on refreshing the engines and upgrading the gadgetry, and despite the lack of headlines has made a pretty good job of it.
There are now four petrol engines – the 59bhp and 74bhp 1.0-litre petrol triples from the Volkswagen Up, plus two versions of the 1.2-litre TSI turbo petrol four, in 89bhp and 108bhp forms.
Naturally they’re all Euro 6 compliant and carry VW’s Bluemotion badge of unobtrusive frugality, which entails the fitment of features including a stop-start system. The SE version we tested was the lower-powered of the two TSI engines, good for 60.1mpg on a combined cycle and stated to emit just 107g/km of CO2.
As well as the mechanical changes, there is also a general equipment upgrade. Our SE had a new central 6.5in screen (in the lesser models it’s only a 5.8in) that incorporates a comprehensive new infotainment system.
All Volkswagen Polos now come with electronic stability control, a hill-hold system and a post-collision braking system that reduces the severity of a second impact after an initial crash.
Typical big-car options include adaptive cruise, a driver alert warning system and city emergency braking, all for £500.
In fact the SE (well equipped but not luxurious) gets close to being the ideal supermini, were it not for the fact that its styling is well proportioned but extremely bland: a Polo is one of those cars that almost entirely escapes notice.