From £10,1658

The Volkswagen Polo is far from a budget supermini, but it’s not the most expensive, either. Perhaps what is most surprising is how well the Polo is equipped.

An electronic stability control system, traction control and side airbags are standard on all models, while all bar the bottom S model get alloy wheels and an MP3 connection. Air-con is pretty prevalent across the range, too.

What is most surprising is how well the Polo is equipped

An automatic gearbox is available on the 1.4-litre petrol (it’s a costly option, too), but an excellent DSG dual-clutch automatic is available with the GTI. It's also an option on the BlueGT and the 1.0-litre TSI.

The 1.4-litre diesel BlueMotion, with CO2 emissions of just 91g/km, is a tempting buy for company car users, and it’s one of the better eco superminis currently available. The official average fuel economy of 80.7mpg is impressive, too – although you’ll be doing well to better 70mpg in the real world.

Even the standard 1.4 diesel without the BlueMotion’s clever bits gets close to that at a real-world 60mpg. Given the premium the BlueMotion costs, some time with a calculator is essential to see if you can make its premium back with fuel and tax savings.

The BlueGT, with its ACM technology, requires similar consideration. Its 62.7mpg and 107g/km are certainly commendable, but it’s an expensive way to save money in the long run, costing plenty at full showroom price.

With the exception of the 1.4-litre models and the GTI (with its turbocharged and supercharged 1.4), all Polos claim an average economy figure of more than 50mpg. The standard 1.4 averages 47.9mpg, a figure that’s impressively matched by the GTI.

Resale values have long been a Polo strong suit – they’re high-demand used cars – and the latest model is no different. Lower-powered petrol models should hold their values best.

Another surprise are the deals on offer in VW showrooms: not only are discounts reasonably forthcoming, but offers such as fixed-price service plans are also worth investigating.

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