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Old 10th February 2016, 15:30   #1
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Default Priya's VW Polo GT TSI!

So, here goes my story about how I bought Polo GT TSI (2015).

I am writing this review three months and 3000 kms (1400 of these kms was on a road trip to Valparai) after getting the car. Do keep in mind these are my honest opinions on these cars and may not be the same as everyone else's. We are all individuals after all, can't imagine a world were all of us choose the same things

It is a time when all of the car manufacturers are trying to promote modern automatic cars in India (DCT, DSG, CVT etc) as against the traditional automatics which were never going to be impressive on a small hatchback. Thus, I started leaning towards buying an automatic instead of a manual.

Having made that decision, it was the time to identify some of the cars I wanted to test drive. As always, team-bhp came to rescue as it had detailed information about all automatics in hatchback segment. Honda had just introduced Jazz with a CVT. I kept contacting the Honda dealers in Chennai to book a test drive. None of them responded properly because of the artificial hype created in the market for Jazz CVT. I started looking out for alternatives since I couldn't get any of the dealers to agree for a test drive and decided to give Ford Ecosport a try.

I called up the dealer who promptly booked for the slot and brought the car to my office to do the test drive. I took my friend along who is fairly comfortable driving automatics (I was worried of “Phantom clutch”). I liked it at the moment I saw it (May be because it was a tall car like Estilo and I used to drive an Estilo). I had to keep this on hold because it was too pricy.

Pros:
1. Commanding seating position
2. DCT gear box

Cons:
1. Way too expensive for what it is!(Even after emptying 11.5 lakhs from your bank, you do not get all the features of Eco sport manual top end variant)
2. Mediocre performance
3. Needlessly wide turning circle for a car with such a small footprint! (5.3 meters, compare this with the Innova's 5.4 meters)

One fine Sunday morning, I decided to go directly to Sundaram Honda realising I would never be able to book a slot over phone. After making a fuss as if they launched world’s greatest car, I finally managed to get a slot to test drive.

Pros:
1. It was spacious
2. Tail-lights are similar to the ones in V40 (Oh how I wish I could afford the V40)
3. Paddle shifters

Cons:
1. Extremely evident cost cutting – No paint under the bonnet, no reverse sensors (only reversing camera), gear selector knob from the 1990s
2. No top end variant in the automatic which means no magic seats
3. Pronounced rubber band effect
4. Paddle shifters – The simulated 7-speed gears don’t really do anything they should have skipped them and given us magic seats!

I was highly disappointed after the test drive since I thought it was going to be the ‘ONE’.

Last edited by GTPower : 16th February 2016 at 00:25. Reason: Content modification
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Old 11th February 2016, 23:58   #2
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Default re: Priya's VW Polo GT TSI!

When I came out of the showroom, I was feeling irritated, disappointed and confused. My friend suggested we drop into the VW showroom and check out the Polo GT as it was just around the corner. Initially I wasn't too keen as my friend owns a Polo as well, and in my mind the design was already starting to show its age. But then I decided to go and check it out anyway.

So we went there and the Polo GT test drive car was available. I didn't drive it only my friend did, i had no intentions of buying it. I guess my heart had still not recovered from the disappointment the Jazz has turned out to be. Dreams of owning a high revving VTEC engine had been shattered, I mean during the test drive I floored the gas pedal and it felt like the car was thinking to itself “Oh no she floored the pedal! what do i do?!! what do I do now!!!?? Ahhhhh!!! oh wait I’m supposed to go faster!”. By the time it was done thinking the gap I wanted to take was gone! (In retrospect the Jazz isn't a bad car and I am sure it is exactly what some people want but it just wasn't what I wanted)

A few days later when I had sort of recovered I asked my friend what I should do, as I definitely need a car of my own. He was like “Well the Polo GT is the best automatic hatch out there, I don't understand why you do not want it! Oh and do you know they added cruise control, electric OVRMs and a cooled glove box now?” He also sent me links to reviews on YouTube and the one on team-bhp and that is where my GT journey began.

In next few days, I paid the advance and booked the car (having never driven it!!). I was told at this point that the GT can be had in one of only three colours of which only one is metallic, after "arggggggggg" running through my mind I said anything but red. The salesperson promised to deliver the car within a month. Once again, everything was going perfect and then, this happened. When the delivery date was nearing, I was trying to check with the dealer about the status and I never got any proper updates from the dealership (Despite calling them almost every day about the status!!). This was the time when the VW scam surfaced and no progress happened on my booking. The usual replies to my call were like “Sorry Mam! The delay is because of the scandal or they have identified some defects or sometimes some random stupid things”.

I lost my patience waiting since I did not get any my car even after 1 and half months from the initial date on which delivery was promised. I told my friend “See! this car is not for me!” So I dragged him along and went to the dealership to cancel the car! Enough was enough! (Oh by this time the Honda dealers were calling me almost everyday asking me to buy the Jazz CVT. Wonder where all the initial attitude they were giving me went). So me and my friend were at the dealer and I was just standing there pissed off, my friend tells the woman at the reception that I wanted to cancel my booking. She calls one of the salesmen there as the guy who was handling my booking wasn't at the showroom. This new sales guys starts off with a sad story (in Tamil this would be refered to Sondha Kadha Soga Kadha) of why they were not able to deliver and bla bla bla, in the end he gave us a mail ID and said we would have to send a mail to cancel the booking.

As we left the showroom I started composing the cancellation mail and the salesman who was handling my booking called, I just gave the phone to my friend (who is a professional swearing enthusiast lol), the guy wanted us to wait one more day “Just one more day Sir, please please”. Guess what?, the very next day (79 days after booking the car) the guy calls and says your car is at the yard!

Last edited by GTPower : 15th February 2016 at 17:53.
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Old 12th February 2016, 17:06   #3
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Default Priya's Polo GT!

Fast forward to the day I actually got the car. It was the beginning of the horrendous rains that tormented Chennai, so it was raining and I didn’t take any pictures other than the one the salesman took.

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Now the salesman offered to explain the cars features, this was hilarious. According to him once the car is in D it will start moving at a minimum speed of 20kmph, and if it is in S it will move at a minimum speed of 40kmph. I was trying really hard to not laugh at which point he throws another really funny one. The little toggle switch on the top of the wiper stalk is apparently used to control the amount of wiper travel (this is actually used to control to delay between wipes), so VW built a system where you can wipe only the lower part of the windscreen…. lol. I don’t know what kind of training these people get from VW but it’s obviously not enough.

By this time my friend had finished his cigarette and I handed over the keys to him (Still had not driven the car) and went straight to the car radio place to install an android HU I got from aliexpress (this particular one isn’t actually very good, should have stuck to the winCE one my friend uses) and asked him to take the car to his place as the day wasn’t auspicious enough to take it home apparently.

Fast forward again to almost 3000kms, 3 months and a road trip to Valparai later I can actually tell you what this car is like! I’ve actually driven it!

First things first, I am still waiting for the day when dealerships can deliver cars to their customers without SWIRL marks!! Why dealers! Why must you use those high speed rotary polishers and buff brand new cars outside in the dust with dirty wool pads ?! So you get a brand new car from the factory, remove the masking tape and swirl the whole thing up!! There has to be a special place in hell for all those involved in this conspiracy!

VW is no newbie to the world of making small hatchbacks or making them hot. The Polo therefore should inherit all the qualities that made its grand daddy the Golf GTi the daddy of all hot hatches.

Exterior & Build

The factory paint job is the best I have seen on any car in this price range, there is orange peel but its not as bad as on most other cars I've seen. I spoke to a friend of mine to see if the orange peel can be removed, and in his opinion the non metallic white paint has a harder clear coat applied than other colours used by VW and getting rid of the wet sanding marks would be next to impossible and suggested I live with what I have .

It’s a pleasant car to look at, with its absolutely timeless lines (read boring) which are.. well, timeless (look at pictures of a 1980's polo and you will see the exact same lines on the sides) but its best left at that. The last attempt by the Germans to create an interesting design gave us the Bangle designed BMW 5 Series which was as elegant as a scrambled egg.

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GT TSI stickers, they could have thought of a better way to highlight that its a GT. Twin pipe exhausts maybe? Still could have been worse (Punto Abarth)

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VW could afford to give only a glued on spoiler, fevikwik to the rescue! (My manager actually asked me why I had glued on such a ugly spoiler)

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The OVRMs are black irrespective of the colour of your car. This is supposed to be sporty in VW's book, does this mean all entry level models are designed to look sporty? Last I checked only entry level models do not have body coloured OVRMs, and no black OVRMs are not the same as having unpainted carbon fiber ones. Indicators are now integrated to the OVRM, and it gets the electric folding feature which can only be activated by the knob on the driver side door. It does not auto fold when you switch off the car.

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Anyone used to the OVRMs on the earlier polo will notice that the mirror has now become a lot smaller. Notice how the indicators extend to the edges, perfect for when you are changing lanes and you cant look at the dash to see if the indicator is still on. (The blind spot mirror is aftermarket of-course).

I was initially opening and shutting the door a lot, I was trying to find that germanic "thud" everyone refers too. I think we have got to the point were people just assume if its German you are going to hear a "thud" and if its not what are you supposed to hear? a "dung"?. Personal rants aside this doesn't feel as sturdy as a 1990's Mercedes. However the keyword here is "feel", feel has nothing to do with how safe a car is.

Panel gaps are consistent but are not small. You hear the odd creak from the sides when the chassis flexes, but that about it. The car is very well put together, normally you would have a rubber boot to protect the wires running into the doors from the elements, remove the boot you will see a hole with wires running through it. In the polo remove the boot and all you see are connectors plugged into the pillar no exposed metal hole here.

Interior & Equipment

Auto-dimming mirror Check
Lumbar adjustment Check
Electrically adjustable seats Check
TPMS Check

Yes all these are features you DO NOT get after paying an equivalent of 15000 USD. But you do get the ‘Milan' Titanschwarz (read fabric) seat covers, ah ‘Milan' Titanschwarz seat covers! what enthusiasts around the world have been lusting for all their lives….rrright. Can’t blame VW for this though, our crazy tax system means VW cannot really use their usual global suppliers (who are probably located in China) and had to localize parts, which probably still ended up being more expensive anyway. You will also notice that this is jumble of parts from the 6R and the 6C, for example the instrument cluster and the climate control are from the 6R, while the steering wheel is from the 6C.

The interior is a really nice place to be, ergonomics are great irrespective of how short or tall, big or small you may be. It does not feel luxurious or plush nor are there any sporty bits and pieces in it. Let me put it this way its like coffee made by one of those more expensive coffee machines which use real coffee beans and real milk, sure its all there but its still not the same as a coffee made by an pro Barista. Yes its all there but not quiet there.

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So you buy a 6C Polo GT (which should be highline) and get a midline cluster from the 6R … Yipee!! And yes you saw that right, it redline's around 6000 rpm, the downside of a turbocharged engine.

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Cruise control! Never seen stalk mounted cruise controls on any recent car.

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Oh wait I thought you pull towards you for upshifts and push away from you for downshifts, oops nope that’s only on racing sequential shifters on the VW it’s the other way around and blame VW for ruining it for Porsche as well

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Cooling vent inside the glove box; so your drink will be cold after that long drive.

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Glove box lid which tends to open itself when driven over a hard bump. Plastics quality on the lower half of the dash is a few notches lower than what I would expect at this price. Note the provisions for external USB connections, you could use them for after market installs.

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The MFSW has thumb rests and is leather wrapped but is thinner than the one in the 6R

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No leather wrap on the handbrake, wow VW you just made an extra profit of 10 bucks for car! You can use this money to pay off your fines.

The car also features illuminated foot wells! Just in case you can’t find the pedals at night! But honestly they look cool. The rear seats are very spacious if you are willing to saw your legs off.

The car comes equipped with a basic stereo (FM+Bluetooth+SD Card+USB) and 4 speakers (whizzer cones). The stereo sounds decent, the problem starts when you replace the stock head unit like I did as the whizzer cones are 8 Ohms and this makes any after market headunit's volume level really low. So if you are changing the head unit best change the speakers as well. Also the OVRM cowl is not home to any knobs or buttons so it a perfect place to mount after market tweeters.

It also comes with single zone climate control from the previous generation Polo (6R). Basic cabin lights which are quite different from the one fitted to the international models.

Equipment level are very sparse and what even more disappointing is there are no real options you can specify your car with, for example I like sunroofs but can I get my car specified with one? Well the answer is "NO".

Safety

Two front airbags are standard across the Polo range, rear passengers do not get airbags (VW knows that no one can sit there).The GT also gets traction control, ABS with EBD. But is it safe? The Indian Polo with airbags has a NCAP 4 star rating so should be safe enough just like how ISI marked helmets are safe enough. Would I wear a ISI helmet when driving a R1? Nope. Indian safety levels better stick to Indian speeds. I wonder when manufacturers will take safety of Indians living in India as seriously as those in the first world, when we are able to sue them as easily as in the first world maybe.

Engine and Drivetrain

A lot has been said about the 1.2 TSI. The key challenge VW wanted to address in creating the TSI engines according to their website “was to create engines that used less fuel and produced lower CO2 emissions without sacrificing power”.

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A typical scene at the VW emission testing center. (Image courtesy - the internet)

Emissions apart, what have VW actually given us with the tiny turbo petrol engine fitted to the Polo GT? We finally have a 100bhp engine which is still small enough to get the excise exemption given to sub 4 meter petrol vehicles! (The only comparable engine we have in India is the Ford Eco Boost 1.0 fitted to Ecosport). The engine is mated to the DQ200 7 speed DSG transmission (which is definitely the coolest thing fitted to the car), yep you have technology used on the Bugatti Veyron in a small hatchback! The power is sent to the front wheels and the differential is equipped with XDS.

The engine stays extremely drivable in the city, the torquey nature of the motor means you can take that ever closing gap. “D” mode is perfectly adequate in the city and you will almost never feel the need to slot it into sport mode. At highway speeds the engine never feels like it is going to run out of steam; just don’t get into a dog fight with the annoying tailgater in the Mercedes.

Being a direct injection engine it has a rather diesel like chatter at idle albeit at a lower volume and a rather raspy tone when rev’d hard. It never objects to being rev’d but I wouldn’t go so far to call this a rev happy motor, which isn’t much of a problem as this engine does not thrive on revs. Is this a refined engine? Well yes in its own way. It is not as smooth as a Honda or even a Hyundai for that matter, it does not have that buttery smoothness those engines have. I cannot think of any turbocharged petrol engines which have noticeable turbo lag (except maybe the 300 ZX but that came out such a long time ago), the 1.2 TSI engine is no exception is has no noticeable lag. It idles at around 900 rpm and produces max torque from 1500 rpm so the turbo definitely spools up pretty fast.

The DQ200 is fast, it can change gears shift faster than any human I know can shift a manual box. Again is it smooth? Well no its not buttery smooth like a normal torque converter unit since it has a dry clutch, but considering it has a dry clutch the shifts are still smoother than shifts made by most humans on a manual. The software controlling the gear box is very impressive as it is rarely confused on what to do. It does not have paddle shifters but you don’t really miss it, as the in manual mode the gear stick does act like a proper sequential shifter (à la Porsche PDK), unlike the Eco Sport which has a button on the gear knob. The only time gearshifts are jerky are when you downshift two gears down e.g. 4th to 2nd and that too on rare occasion.

With all this power and technology I though it would be really interesting to see roll-on acceleration times in specific gears. It would have been completely hypothetical as being an automatic it would have kicked down and dropped gears when you stepped on the gas in "D" or "S". So I moved the stick to manual, shifted into 4th while keeping the car at 40 kmph, asked my friend to get ready with the stopwatch and stepped on the gas. Guess what, it still kicked down and dropped in to 2nd!

To be brutally honest the engine feels like it is doing what it is intended to, it does not stir your soul or cause you to fall madly in love with it. I never wanted to write this section till GTO hinted at my glaring omission. Yes the engine is perfect but it has no character, to be honest to myself I’ve had more fun revving the pistons off on my Dad's Estilo.


Dynamics

The car is set up for bad roads, so there is more body roll than you would expect in a car with a GT badge. Anyone from Chennai/visited Chennai reading this should be familiar with the Kathipara clover leaf flyover, the exit turn to stay on mount road when travelling towards the city from the airport is my proving ground for testing cornering ability of a car. After going round it a couple of times I am happy to report that there’s crazy amounts of body roll! This would be totally OK if the steering had any feedback letting you know when you are at the limit of grip, but there is none of that either!! Attempts to go faster on the curve felt more like suicide and less like lunacy. The sad fact is I’m sure the chassis has far more to give and maybe it wouldn’t be this scary if it had the international spec suspension, but it doesn't.

So no this is not a corner carving machine, unless you are carving them at less than 40 kmph which is the speed limit of most ghat roads anyway. The steering is really lifeless! I kid you not, so was the Estilo’s but the Estilo makes no sporting pretensions.


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The car came shod with 185\60 MRF tyres on 15 inch rims which are …. Well my mom always told me, “If you can’t say something nice don’t say anything” I mean the ABS was kicking in even at moderate braking on the highway. My friend noted that he has never experienced this on the Apollo tyres his car came with. If you are someone who drives on the highways regularly you will seriously have to consider changing the tyres at the least for the sake of your safety. If you are more of a city warrior and are not planning on pushing your car to the limits, changing tyres shouldn’t be necessary except for bragging rights.

I was surprised when I was noticed the car had drum brakes at the back, hasn’t the world moved on to discs all-round already? The brakes feel super spongy and wooden! You get the same level of feedback as you get when stepping on a marshmallow. Another win for the Polo GT! I really wish VW had paid more attention to this. With the MRF tyres the braking ability of the car is completely inadequate and border line unsafe, I initially had a few close calls as I was expecting far more baking power. With the way the DSG software is tuned do not expect to get much help from engine braking as sudden downshifts will make the software waste time trying to rev match than actually deliver engine braking power.

So if your heart craves for hard hitting performance and exuberant chassis dynamics for about 10 lacs buy a litre class motorcycle (oh you’ll only get a used one, for 10 big ones).

Comfort and Economy

Noise levels inside the cabin are controlled, but it is not a Roll Royce. For the SQ orientated ICE fanatics out there, you will have to do a bit of work to reduce the overall noise floor of your listening environment. At highway speeds the combination of tyre roar, engine drone and wind noise do require cranking up of the volume. However during the drive from Chennai to Valpari my friend managed to drive all the way with just 3 short breaks so the noises are not high enough to cause tiredness on long drives, I wish I could test the db levels but I do not own a decibel meter. The ride feels soft and well damped and never feels harsh even when you bottom out your suspension which is actually not very hard to do.

In the city its tiny turning circle (<5m), relatively fast steering and the smart DSG make it a breeze to drive, weaving your way through traffic has never been easier. The Bimmer next to you may have a whole lot more power but is never going to catch up.

Seats are fine if you can find the right position, however if you have long legs like my friend you will find you have to increase the seat height to the max and push it fully back to get any form of under thigh support. This makes him feel a bit awkward more like riding on the car than driving it.

Mileage in the city is between 8 and 11 kmpl (with AC). On the highway I managed to get 15kmpl (with AC) but that was with 4 people on board.

Conclusion

If you take away its hot hatch pretentions, you will find you have a brilliant little entry level automatic hatch. Yes that is what the car is and when you look at it this way you will also find no other hatch back in India comes close to the GT TSI as an overall package (provided you are single). It’s no lean mean performance machine but as I found out on my road trip there is nothing the car refuses to do, no matter how crazy the ask. If this car was a dog it would be a Labrador, always happy, a little clumsy, full of energy and very easy to train! I love it to bits!

Last edited by GTPower : 23rd February 2016 at 01:23. Reason: Rule #11. Editing out the relevant bits.
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Old 24th February 2016, 08:34   #4
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Default Re: Priya's VW Polo GT TSI!

Thread moved from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section) to the Initial Ownership Section. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 24th February 2016, 09:00   #5
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Default Re: Priya's VW Polo GT TSI!

Congratulations on your GT!

This is one of the most interesting and honest reviews of the GT I've read. I mean, almost all of them focus only on the engine and the DSG (which I've to agree are one of the best combos available in the market today) while completely ignoring the lifeless steering, 'soft' suspension, rear seat space etc. Timeless designs they are, but the Polo/Vento are surely beginning to show their age now and I wonder if VW has any plans of introducing a refresh/new models since the Ameo launch is just around the corner! IMO, that dashboard looks like a 'grander' version of the gen-1 City!
But all said, it is a wonderful all rounder and still the best automatic hatchback on sale in India. Enjoy and drive safe!

Last edited by Porschefire : 24th February 2016 at 09:02.
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Old 24th February 2016, 09:54   #6
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Default Re: Priya's Polo GT!

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTPower View Post

Fast forward to the day I actually got the car. It was the beginning of the horrendous rains that tormented Chennai, so it was raining and I didn’t take any pictures other than the one the salesman took.
Congrats GTPower on your latest acquisition and welcome to the GT club

GT TSI is hands down the best AT Hatch out there in the market today and dare I say, under 25 Lakhs !! May be the quality has been compromised a bit against the older Polo/Vento, but to I think it still is a well put together and amazingly engineered hatch to a great extent.

I feel you are a true petrol head at heart and it really reflects in your review. You couldn't have got it any better by going in for the GT TSI.


Quote:

The OVRMs are black irrespective of the colour of your car. This is supposed to be sporty in VW's book, does this mean all entry level models are designed to look sporty? Last I checked only entry level models do not have body coloured OVRMs, and no black OVRMs are not the same as having unpainted carbon fiber ones.
couldn't possibly agree more with you. In fact, I have always felt this and is the primary reason I did not go in for that glossy wrap on my GT as well.

IMO, if a GT badge and chrome strip up front were masked and parked beside a Trendline Polo, it would be very tricky to differentiate them from up front!!

Anyways, wish you a very happy motoring and drive safe.

Last edited by Vik0728 : 24th February 2016 at 09:56.
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Old 24th February 2016, 09:58   #7
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Default Re: Priya's VW Polo GT TSI!

Great review and congratulations on a smashing purchase. There are cars across price points that completely tug at the heartstrings. You HAVE TO own them and they simply bring a smile to your face. The Zen in its day, the Swift, the TSI / VRS Octavia all belong to that car.

The Polo GT TSI is one such car as well. In terms of its direct competitors, there is simply no contest with the other ATs for sheer pleasure.

Good luck for an enjoyable & fuss free ownership experience.
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Old 24th February 2016, 10:02   #8
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Default Re: Priya's VW Polo GT TSI!

Congrats for the GT. Though the design is close to ~8 years old, it is still ageing gracefully. Interesting review and covers most of the points which others miss on account of the brilliant engine+gearbox combination.
The only fly in the ointment for Polo being its rear seat. The space offered is so less that it is difficult to squeeze even 2 people of medium built.
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Old 24th February 2016, 10:03   #9
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Default Re: Priya's VW Polo GT TSI!

Wow! That is one unusual GT TSI review. While I do agree that the Polo has its shortcomings, I have to say you need to set realisitic standards for expectations

Yes the suspension is set up for comfort, but "crazy amounts of body roll"!! really? Something must be wrong with your car.

Noise levels inside are also pretty good for a hatchback in this segment. Never been in a Rolls Royce myself, but if you expect the Polo to be even close to it sarcastically, VW must take it as a compliment!

Last edited by Santoshbhat : 24th February 2016 at 10:10. Reason: Mistook comment for Jazz to be for Polo!
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Old 24th February 2016, 10:17   #10
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Default Re: Priya's VW Polo GT TSI!

A nice no nonsense review. Thanks for sharing. Congratulations and wish you all the best.

Seeing your comments on handling, DSG shifting, rev-happy nature, NVH levels, Glad you brought the GT and not one of the other competitors. If these aspects of the GT leave you unimpressed, if you had bought any other hatchback in the segment, pretty sure you would have returned/sold it by now.

Note on drum brakes. There are very few cars this side of 15L that come with all disc brakes. I think 2-3 maybe.

I guess the GT TSI will be the car with the most ownership reports here in Team Bhp. The nice thing is that in most cases, each report brings out a different and unique perspective of the GT. Goes to show how this car has satisfied the needs of customers with a wide band of use cases.

Last edited by Rajeevraj : 24th February 2016 at 10:24.
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Old 24th February 2016, 12:01   #11
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Default Re: Priya's VW Polo GT TSI!

Congratulations and best wishes on your new GT (from a fellow Tamilian). From the beginning you have not wanted the Polo GT. In fact it happened to be an unexpected drop on your plate and the way you have written it, says you have been forced to like it or rather accept what it is and allow it to be part of your life. This perspective reflects in every review sentence. As I keep reading the review expecting one appreciation and when I find it, hmm, it is immediately followed by a scolding. I can imagine if anyone representing VW comes in front of you, then I can only sympathize him / her. .

Last edited by Zappo : 24th February 2016 at 12:43. Reason: Let's keep people's personal life out of the public posts.
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Old 24th February 2016, 12:06   #12
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Default Re: Priya's VW Polo GT TSI!

Thank you everyone for your wishes and thanks to GTO for guiding me in writing the review!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vik0728 View Post

GT TSI is hands down the best AT Hatch out there in the market today and dare I say, under 25 Lakhs !! May be the quality has been compromised a bit against the older Polo/Vento, but to I think it still is a well put together and amazingly engineered hatch to a great extent.
That is the biggest problem we have here in India, there are no hatchbacks in the 10 to 25 lakhs range! I set out a budget of 20 lakhs only to find out that the Merc A class, BMW 1 or the Volvo are in excess of 30 and the Mini is 40 lakhs!

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Originally Posted by Axe77 View Post
Great review and congratulations on a smashing purchase. There are cars across price points that completely tug at the heartstrings. You HAVE TO own them and they simply bring a smile to your face. The Zen in its day, the Swift, the TSI / VRS Octavia all belong to that car.
The previous gen Swift was a revelation for its time, in contrast I would not rate the Polo so highly but its close. Sadly the Zen and Octavia VRS came out even before I was old enough to have a license

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Originally Posted by Utopian View Post
The only fly in the ointment for Polo being its rear seat. The space offered is so less that it is difficult to squeeze even 2 people of medium built.
The rear seats are a big let down, but on the flip side is does have a spacious boot.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Santoshbhat View Post
Yes the suspension is set up for comfort, but "crazy amounts of body roll"!! really? Something must be wrong with your car.

Noise levels inside are also pretty good for a hatchback in this segment. Never been in a Rolls Royce myself, but if you expect the Polo to be even close to it sarcastically, VW must take it as a compliment!
Well if my car is indeed defective then that doesn't say much for VW QC. However I do not believe that is the case. The problem is its such a low car so I should be forgiven for expecting brilliant body roll control. However as it turns out VW just slapped on taller springs and didn't really pay much attention to variable valving or simple stuff like that which would have made it much better in the corners.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rajeevraj View Post
Seeing your comments on handling, DSG shifting, rev-happy nature, NVH levels, Glad you brought the GT and not one of the other competitors. If these aspects of the GT leave you unimpressed, if you had bought any other hatchback in the segment, pretty sure you would have returned/sold it by now.
Ha ha I was waiting for the GTi to be launched but since that wasn't happening I had to settle for the GT but as you can see from my posts I did try on all the other cars for size first just to be extra sure.

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Originally Posted by Rajeevraj View Post
Note on drum brakes. There are very few cars this side of 15L that come with all disc brakes. I think 2-3 maybe.
True, and when you think its only 25k worth of parts (retail) I do not understand why they do not want to put discs in the rear. VW didn't bat an eyelid, raising the prices for the cooled glove box, new OVRMs and cruise control but they can't add rear discs? Hmmm

Last edited by GTPower : 24th February 2016 at 12:15.
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Old 24th February 2016, 12:44   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Santoshbhat View Post
Wow! That is one unusual GT TSI review. While I do agree that the Polo has its shortcomings, I have to say you need to set realisitic standards for expectations

Yes the suspension is set up for comfort, but "crazy amounts of body roll"!! really? Something must be wrong with your car.

Noise levels inside are also pretty good for a hatchback in this segment. Never been in a Rolls Royce myself, but if you expect the Polo to be even close to it sarcastically, VW must take it as a compliment!
+1. There's some serious expectation vs reality issue here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTPower View Post
Equipment level are very sparse and what even more disappointing is there are no real options you can specify your car with, for example I like sunroofs but can I get my car specified with one? Well the answer is "NO".
<15L which car let's us choose a Sunroof? Forget about that, there's practically nothing as selecting options in India as abroad. The car comes in a certain variant. Take it as it is and add overpriced accessories at the dealer.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTPower View Post

Engine and Drivetrain

To be brutally honest the engine feels like it is doing what it is intended to, it does not stir your soul or cause you to fall madly in love with it. I never wanted to write this section till GTO hinted at my glaring omission. Yes the engine is perfect but it has no character, to be honest to myself I’ve had more fun revving the pistons off on my Dad's Estilo.
You had more fun revving the pistons of a natural aspirated average engine in an Estilo (Not even the original ZEN) than a turbo charged petrol engine with almost flat torque distribution from low revs? The GT TSi is certainly not even remotely close to your way of fun.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTPower View Post

Dynamics

So no this is not a corner carving machine, unless you are carving them at less than 40 kmph which is the speed limit of most ghat roads anyway. The steering is really lifeless! I kid you not, so was the Estilo’s but the Estilo makes no sporting pretensions.
Steering has zero feedback, agree but you couldn't corner past 40kmph in the GT TSi? I hope you didn't get sold a lemon.


Quote:
Originally Posted by GTPower View Post

If you take away its hot hatch pretentions, you will find you have a brilliant little entry level automatic hatch. Yes that is what the car is and when you look at it this way you will also find no other hatch back in India comes close to the GT TSI as an overall package (provided you are single). It’s no lean mean performance machine but as I found out on my road trip there is nothing the car refuses to do, no matter how crazy the ask. If this car was a dog it would be a Labrador, always happy, a little clumsy, full of energy and very easy to train! I love it to bits!
What's with the "hot hatch pretention" you seem to mention more than once in your review?

After all the negatives you have listed, you say there's nothing the car refuses to do. I'm confused.

Entry level automatic hatch? What's the next level automatic hatch available?

It just pains to read when you say the engine has no character and compare it to the Estilo. No car is perfect. I feel you are being too critical of the car. I sincerely hope you revisit some of the negatives you have listed out.

P.S: I don't own a GT TSi but have test driven it quite a number of times before getting a Aspire 1.5L DCT. A head over heart decision.
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Old 24th February 2016, 13:12   #14
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Default Re: Priya's VW Polo GT TSI!

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTPower View Post
The rear seats are a big let down, but on the flip side is does have a spacious boot.
The problem is its such a low car so I should be forgiven for expecting brilliant body roll control.
Congrats on the purchase. Welcome to the GT club !
Rear seats are cramped.. so I thought. But I had 2 average sized adults in the back seats for a 1K trip via the hills and they had no problem. I mean they actually slept (afternoon siesta) after a nice lunch break.
The boot is indeed very nice and I always underestimate its capacity. No boot light (my 2010 i10 has it!!)

I will stick my neck out and say that Polo is actually not so low slung. The seating is low, but the GC is certainly comparable to other hatchbacks. I could ride over rough patches/steep inclines and stones without anything scrapping the underside.

Its not an handler for sure. But its certainly not wobbly. Body roll is also not an issue for me. Given that I don;t drive on pristine tarmac all the time, I am happy with a compliant suspension and a slight disadvantage in handling.

If you find it scary when cornering, you must be well over the speed limit.. I mean double the speed limit. Am I right?

Last edited by freedom : 24th February 2016 at 13:13.
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Old 24th February 2016, 13:37   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Santoshbhat View Post
While I do agree that the Polo has its shortcomings, I have to say you need to set realisitic standards for expectations

Quote:
Originally Posted by kiku007 View Post
+1. There's some serious expectation vs reality issue here.

+1

For someone with knowledge and experience of how a hot hatch should look, sound and feel, and a pretty big budget going up to twice what this car costs, one would have to question your decision to buy this car without a test drive and take delivery without PDI.

Amusing review nonetheless.
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