9.15am: Departure from a Berlin hotel, into a fleet of black Volkswagen minibuses to the reveal location. We arrived in Berlin yesterday evening, and spent most of the time since preparing for the launch (and sleeping).
9:20am: Polishing off preparatory questions en route, for any and all execs unfortunate enough to cross my path. Greetings with other journalists turns to talk of the embargo holding our respective websites to silence until a pre-agreed time with the manufacturer. Today’s is 11am.
9:30am: Uh oh, word has spread of said embargo having been broken by another site. All rush to correspond with Volkswagen and respective offices back in the UK about the next steps. Tech issues blamed for the leak, and the story is quickly pulled from the site. Accidents like this happen, but all are glad it wasn't them.
10am: A large banner at open gates reads “The all-new Polo, world premiere 2017” signals our arrival at the location. The car ride is realistically the only glimpse of Berlin we'll get. There’s also a pristine Mk1 Polo parked outside.
10:15am: Small talk with other impatient press; we’ve already seen pictures of the car, but are more than keen to get a look in the flesh. Often, press photos don’t do the car justice in the metal. Other times, it’s the opposite. Either way, we want in.
10:20am: The Italian motoring press have a bad rep for descending on a car en masse, having not observed the queueing etiquette. Let's hope some decorum is maintained today; it's a rather packed venue.
10:40am: And we’re in! To the entrance, that is. Large chunks of the room are sectioned off for when the manufacturer’s spiel begins. Taking in the ambience of the room, it’s an odd setting: lots of suited and togged-up journalists, with a DJ playing youth-oriented dance music, while a fine mist of synthetic smoke fills the air.
10:42am: Meerkatting around the room for a glimpse of either Klaus Bischoff or Stefan Winkelmann with questions prepared.
10:45am: Getting nearer to liftoff now, but they’re keeping us entertained with food and drink. Odd foods are served; this time, curry-flavoured popcorn and nut-crusted pâté balls on sticks are on the menu. I’ll pass, danke. Volkswagen PRs run through interview plans and field pricing and specs questions for the fifth time; maintaining joviality while telling journalists they still won’t arrive until closer to the Polo’s launch date later in the year.