Volkswagen Cross Polo review: Get noticed!
Volkswagen launched a Crossover-esque version of its successful premium hatchback Polo and joined the up and coming deceptive trend in India. The difference between Polo and Cross Polo is very easy to narrate. Like the ‘Cross’ tag is prefixed to Polo, Volkswagen has affixed some black plastic cladding to lower part of usual Polo hatch and called it a Crossover!
The said bare plastic trims on Cross Polo cover few inches of lower body panels all around the hatchback, which is just enough to notice the change from regular Polo. The cladding also runs along wheel arches. The front and rear fascia gets silver treatment on bottom-most portion of the protective bumpers. Otherwise, rest of giveaways of Cross Polo include single slat front grille finished in chrome, round front fog lamps, silver-black and silver coloured roof rails. So Volkswagen has managed to make the Cross Polo look rugged, but that is the extent VW has taken it to make a Crossover product.
Cross or not, the Volkswagen Polo bears versatile visual appeal, suitable for sports, formal and casual environment. The front, side and rear body profiles bear simple stature & body lines, which may also be the secret as to why it hasn’t aged out yet.
Interiors of Cross Polo also feature exact same design and tech bits seen in its hatchback brother. The only noticeable change seen inside the Cross’s cabin is its Livon Titanium black upholstery. Apart from that, you wouldn’t know if it is the Cross version or not if you are blindfolded and seated in the Cross Polo.
VW Cross Polo features list includes music player with bluetooth, USB and AUX-in support and steering mounted audio functions, automatic climate control, electronically adjustable ORVMs, day/night IRVM, speed related power steering with tilt & telescopic adjustments, height adjustable driver seat and leather wrapped steering wheel, gearshift knob and hand brake lever. Other features include reverse sensors, rear defogger, rear wash & wipe, all four power windows with driver side auto (up and down), and remote entry.
Plastic quality of mono-tone black dashboard and inner door panels are top notch, complimented by chrome border lines around AC vents, music player and gear lever surround. Overall fit and finish, button quality, and the material heaviness stands out to teach a lesson to the rivals in the segment. Seats offer enough comfort for both front and rear occupants, come with adjustable head restraints. Headroom is just adequate, but leg and knee room will not be complained over. Rear parcel tray is wide enough to be useful, and boot space is appreciable as well.
Now the deja vu tour in and around Volkswagen Cross Polo ends here, time to set the 1.2 litre 3 cylinder TDI engine roaring. Growl is acceptable for a diesel mill, swiftly transforms into sporty rhythm and so does acceleration once the turbo lag mark of 2,000 rpm is exceeded. Peak torque of 180 Nm is also reached at the same 2,000 rpm, then touches the maximal power rating of 75 PS at 4,200 rpm. The Cross Polo gets a 5 speed manual transmission mated to the diesel plant.
The punch thrown by the engine when turbo kicks in is enjoyable in the Polo, combined with timely gearshifts, takes the Polo up to 150kph with ease. Beyond that the engine struggles to help the speedo clock more speed, but manages to take it to 167 kmph (speedo indicated) in sometime. The Polo doesn’t feel underpowered on the highway, and masks the speed just enough to retain confidence and feel the speed as well. The Polo (OMG! I forgot to prefix Cross! chal, we’re done talking about plastics, does it matter now?) can store 45 litres of fuel and gives an overall average of 22.1 km for every litre. Gearshift quality of Polo could’ve been made better, just with the resistance offered by the shifting mechanism. With this hard shifter, we require 220 ml of energy drink for every 5 km in city traffic!
Volkswagen Cross Polo offers very good stability and control at high speeds, thanks to enjoyable shocks setup and speed related electronic power steering. Unlike the petrol version of Polo hatchback, this one exhibits some weight through steering wheel. Hence steering does not feel so dead, and in conjunction with aforementioned steering tech, it does pass on some resistance. Steering feedback is questionable though.
Ride quality is appreciable, the entire suspension setup helps in absorbing and negotiating customary bad roads and lofty speed breakers in the country. Damping does feel a bit hard, but that has to be excused as Volkswagen did not increase the ground clearance from 168mm of the original hatchback model, and we do not want to test the full span underbody cladding fitted underneath the Cross Polo. Implies that it is a crossover for the city, not off road. At least the tires could’ve been made larger, for argument sake at the very least to call it a Crossover, but nay!
Last but not least, braking quality is impeccable in the VW Cross Polo, offering quite a big bite.
Verdict – Volkswagen Cross Polo may give the rest of traffic the idea that you’re sitting in something a tad different, but inside the Cross you will feel the same old Polo, under the foot as well as in front of your eyes; for a price difference of about Rs. 65,000. VW Cross Polo is priced at Rs 7.75 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi), comes in Flash Red, Reflex Silver and Deep Black colours with black lower body cladding (keep in mind, or you’ll forget you bought a crossover).
Why would you buy Cross Polo: Looks
Why would you not buy Cross polo: Price, and Polo GT is available in the market.
Check out Volkswagen Cross Polo specifications and features: