The Evolution of the Volkswagen Polo [GIF]

More than 14 million Volkswagen Polos have been sold worldwide and, here in the UK, it remains one of the most popular superminis on the market.

43 years after the original version launched, the all-new, sixth-generation Polo has just come onto the market. To mark the occasion, we’ve created a special GIF celebrating its history and showing just how far this clever little car has come.

Here’s a bit of background on the models featured…

1975: Volkswagen Polo Mark I

The oil crisis of the 1970s led to a sudden spike in demand for more economical run-arounds. VW reacted to this increased demand by introducing the Polo, a low-specification sister-model to the Audi 50. The two cars were initially sold alongside each other, but the Audi 50 never sold as well, and was eventually withdrawn in 1978.

1981: Volkswagen Polo Mark II

Offering more luggage space and more equipment than the Mark I, this version of the Polo was first introduced as a hatchback with a steep rear window. In 1983, a version with a diagonal rear window – which Volkswagen referred to as the Coupe – was also put on the market as they found some motorists didn’t appreciate the original radical change in styling.

1994: Volkswagen Polo Mark III

This was the first Polo to be made available as a five-door version, and its launch also marked the first time that UK motorists were able to choose a diesel-powered Polo. Available in hatchback, sedan and wagon body styles, it was built on the same platform as the Seat Ibiza.

1995: Volkswagen Polo Harlequin special edition

This colourful special edition was unexpectedly popular: Polo originally planned to release just 1,000 units but ended up selling close to 4,000. As you can see, each panel is a different colour, which VW referred to as ‘Flash red’, ‘Ginster yellow’, ‘Pistachio green’ and ‘Chagall blue’.

2002: Volkswagen Polo Mark IV

Launched in September 2001 at the Frankfurt Motor Show, the Mark IV was the first Polo to offer a semi-automatic air conditioning system, with an automatic climate control named Climatic that adjusted the interior temperature according to your preset. Pretty cool, right?

2009: Volkswagen Polo Mark V

Volkswagen really hit their stride with the fifth incarnation of the Polo, which received wide-ranging praise from reviewers as well as numerous awards, including European Car of the Year 2010. Slightly larger yet 7.5% lighter than its predecessor, it shared its platform with the 2008 SEAT Ibiza and the Audi A1.

2018: Volkswagen Polo Mark VI

The latest Polo model, like many of those before it, has been built on a shared platform. This means more’s been spent on technology and interior finish in the cabin, ensuring that Mark VI version of this enduringly popular car is more appealing than ever.

Autocar have awarded the new Polo 4.5/5 stars, praising it’s “balance of comfort and handling agility”, while Car Magazine have described it as “tough to beat”.

Interested? The New Volkswagen Polo is currently available from £13,860. Alternatively, we have a wide selection of used VW Polos for sale.

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