By on February 19, 2010

Before you choose, remember, this Polo GTI won’t be coming to the United States when the nameplate arrives sometime next year. In fact, no three-door hatch is planned for America at all, since VW has decided to go the Echo route and only sell sedan-bodied Polos stateside. Well, with one exception…

A “Polo Plus” for plus-sized Americans is planned. “It’s more like a cross between a compact minivan and a hatchback. In other words, it’s more like the Honda Fit,” says VWoA’s Stephan Jacoby. This 2011 Cross Polo, which will take a bow at the upcoming Geneva Auto Show, could just be a preview of the model VW has in mind. You know, without all the expensive, high-tech European engines.

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32 Comments on “Pick Your Polo Poison...”


  • avatar

    Does anyone know an address to write to at VWoA that isn’t directly connected to a shredder or brain-dead android?

  • avatar
    threeer

    well, s#!t…here I was soooo hoping for the five-door to make it over here (and not in the bloated “Cross” variant). I guess Americans really, truly are adverse to cool hatchbacks, which is a bummer. And I thought the five-door looked nice and tight…

    • 0 avatar
      sitting@home

      It seems to be a self-fulfilling prophecy in the American market …

      Manufacturer: Customers don’t buy hatchbacks so we won’t sell them.
      Customer: Manufacturers don’t sell hatchbacks so we won’t buy them.

  • avatar
    Autojunkie

    BULL$HIT! Why do they do this? Ford is doing the same thing. We are not getting the two-door hatch versions of the Fiesta and Focus that the EU is getting!

    Should we thank Toyota for giving other automakers the impression that Americams will only drive boring $hitmobiles?

  • avatar
    educatordan

    Sigh, thanks VW. My list of possible future commuter cars gets shorter.

    Cross Polo? Does it come with a case of dorky rugby shirts with the stripes running in a crisscross fashion?

    Wait a min, with the right engine transmission combo maybe I could convince the soon to be Mrs. Educatordan that a “cross between a compact minivan and a hatchback” thing-a-maig could be a good family hauler while the family is still small. BTW she does know how to drive stick and is pretty good at it. ;)

  • avatar

    North America desperately needs more sedans. Thank you VW for aceding to our practical senses and saving us from the debilitating mental stress of having to make actual choices about things like body styles or powertrains, for we Canadians and Americans lack the European sophistication to make these kinds of choices. Phew, what would we do without you?!

  • avatar
    Mark MacInnis

    Hopefully, somebody with a brain at VWofA reads this site and will please, for the love of Gott in Himmel, bring the 3 door and 5-door variants of this lovely little skate. Turbo-diesel, please.

  • avatar
    Sinistermisterman

    Yet another manufacturer missing out on sales. With Mazda not doing anything sporty with their new Mazda2 and Ford not doing anything remotely sporty with the new Fiesta, when is the good ‘ole USA going to get a proper little hot hatch?

  • avatar
    sfdennis1

    The Polo is more in spirit of the original (U.S) GTI of 83-84…problem for VW is that it would make the (Golf) GTI seem a bit bloated, and expensive…a Polo GTI would definitely steal some sales from it’s big brother.

    VW’s just protecting one of it’s US successes…sad, but I’m not sure if there is actually room for 2 hot GTI’s in the American market…one, yes..but 2 may be pushing it. The may do a Polo GT, with sporty trim and suspension, but there not gonna risk F’ing up the GTI gravy train.

    The Polo’s gonna be marketed as what the Rabbit was…cheap and cheerful, etc…Golf and Jetta move (or stay) upmarket to justify their ‘semi-premium’ pricing…

  • avatar
    Robbie

    VW is simply doing what it should be doing, given its high prices of manufacturing in Europe, the euro-dollar exchange rate, and the preferences of the American public. Can anyone here propose a more coherent line of action for VWoA that will *not* lose them a ton of money…?

  • avatar
    turbobeetle

    Tomorrow I will probably be trading in my 02 New Beetle GSX. I would love a GTI, Scirocco, or even a Passat. But due to all the bad memories, and high prices of the car no less the upkeep (and non-us cars that would make me over come this hate) I’ll be buying something not German.

    Nuff Said!

  • avatar
    Brian P

    I would be quite satisfied with a two-door Polo TDI hatch.

    Even if VW didn’t opt to include sporty suspension and wheels, that’s what the aftermarket is for.

  • avatar
    HerrKaLeun

    Marketing folks.. Grrr.

    Americans who buy a VW (or other EU brand) WANT a non-American car. So why only offer the Sedan? Especially for a small car, the hatch makes up for the lack of a large trunk. The Fit sells well with a hatch, and the Polo definitely looks better. Even the Aveo comes as a hatch (and not as an example of a good one) and the few people who buy it, bought it because of the practicality of the hatch. So are GM managers smarter than VW managers?

    I don’t care about the 2-door hatch… it is a pain in the butt to give someone a ride and your wife (or yourself) has to get up to let passengers in and out. Or if you need to fit your huge travel bag on the rear seat the rear doors are very valuable, even if you never give rides to anyone. I had 2-door hatches in earlier years, but never again. It is not gong to look like a cool sports car either way, and is not supposed to.

    they stopped selling Sedan Polos (I think in the 80′s they were called Derby) a long time ago, because no one bought them because with so little cars, not being able to open that trunk gate really makes you unable to transport anything.

    Polo-hatch: I can fit in a washing machine if needed, pickup my friend with his oversee travel luggage etc.

    Polo-sedan: I have a hard time fitting groceries or travel bags in.

    And did we mention reliability? the only reason to deal with VWoA is a wagon or a hatch or diesel that no one else sells. So why would anyone buy a gasoline Polo Sedan? (possibly with red blinkers too)

  • avatar
    Demetri

    I was actually thinking not long ago that if they brought over the 2-door versions of the Polo or Mazda 2 that there’s a good chance that I would buy one. I suppose I can cross the Polo off of the list. It doesn’t look like the 2-door Mazda 2 will make it either. Only the 5-door has been announced so far.

  • avatar
    ajla

    What does the CrossPolo bring to the table over the 5-door Golf?

  • avatar
    geozinger

    FWIW, the US could use a couple of contenders in the small van/wagon arena. As my dear old Chevy continues to biodegrade (i.e. rust), I am thinking about replacements. I have a drum kit that I have to haul around for my gigs, occasionally need to haul a friend or three and get stuff from the Home Depot back to my house (I rent a lot of power tools). Right now, my choices are (new or used) PT Cruiser, Chevy HHR, Honda Fit, VW Jetta wagon and on the real small side, Chevy Aveo hatch.

    Also maybe a used, short wheelbase Chrysler minivan (I am parking impaired in my neighborhood, smaller is better). I don’t know that I could afford to purchase a Cross Polo new, but it would be nice to have the choice. Not everybody would like it, but I might.

  • avatar
    changsta

    If people want more exciting cars, they need to vote with their dollars! I often see comments like “I can’t wait to buy this used in a few years!”. Automakers do not monitor used car sales, they monitor how models sell when they are brand new. So, if you enthusiasts do not go out and buy them, guess what? They stop selling them! I used to have a Ford Focus wagon, which was a wonderful vehicle, and quite popular here in Canada, but when the “redesigned” Focus came out, where was the wagon? Canadian Ford dealers were saying that Ford of Canada simply could not present a strong enough business case for the wagon and hatches, because they simply did not sell in the States in the proportion versus the sedan that they do in Canada. I would LOVE it if North Americans got a wagon version of the next generation Focus, but I doubt that we will, and as such, Ford will not be seeing my money anytime soon.

    A Polo hatch would be wonderful, but it is highly likely that if VW offered both a sedan and a hatch, the sedan would far outsell it in the States. Take the Jetta Vs. the Rabbit for example. Which one sold better? They were essentially the same vehicle. How about the A3 Vs. the A4? Volkswagen has tried selling us the hatch and guess what? The sedan has sold better every time. I am not surprised that they are skeptical that a hatch will sell, especially since the profit margins on an entry level vehicle are much slimmer than on the GTI or the A3. This is not limited to VW/Audi of course. Look at the Mazda6. Who bought the last generation hatch/wagon over the sedan? Very few, and so with this new generation, we get stuck with an enlarged sedan.

    Vote with your money people! Start buying the hatches and wagons that you desire and eventually, other automakers will follow suit. Look at SUVs. It used to be just Explorers and Cherokees, but when they started selling in large numbers, just about all the manufacturers came out with their own designs. Buy hatches, and I’m sure the automakers will respond.

    • 0 avatar
      JSF22

      Not to be argumentative, but aren’t Americans already, by definition, voting with their money? I not only don’t want one of these, I also note that Walter da’Silva is ruining VW design as he did Audi: every car looks the same, just small, medium, or large.

    • 0 avatar
      Robert.Walter

      @JFS22: A long time ago this used to be known at BMW as the “one sausage, 3 sizes policy” (and then along came Bangle).

  • avatar
    Robert.Walter

    They must be stoned…

    After you engineer the front-end for DOT-crash, the engines for EPA-emissions, the restraint systems, lighting, bumpers, mirrors, cluster and the like for FMVSS-regs… is there really that much more incremental investment to put these things onto the allready-existing 3-door BIW?

    Besides, why do they always make the car uglier than the corresponding model sold in Europe (look at the non-led headlamps, the round fogs, and the boring grille and airdam themes.)

    I wouldn’t be surprised to hear that VW has decided to eliminate cupholders again.

  • avatar
    ButterflyJack

    I read somewhere, in the last day or two that this Polo GTI will be equipped with a 1.4 liter part supercharged/part turbocharged, 180 HP engine…which sounds really great…Then, to take all the wind out of those sails…it will be available only with the slam-bang, 7 speed VW automatic(automated manual)..No standard shift…Hmmm nothing sporty about a little tiny car with an automatic tranny to me… dragonfly

  • avatar
    Buckshot

    I never understood why small sedans sells in the usa, and not hatchbacks.
    The only ones that buys small sedans here are cheap/poor senior citizens.
    Younger people buy hatchbacks.


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