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Volkswagen Launches Polo Classic Sedan

26 August, 2004

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Volkswagen, the dominant leader in the burgeoning Chinese automotive market, debuts Chinese passenger car manufacturing in Australia with the launch of the Polo Classic sedan.

Powered by Volkswagen’s spritely 1.6-litre 16-valve engine and featuring a very high level of standard features including dual front and side airbags, semi-automatic air conditioning, CD player, ABS brakes and remote central locking with engine immobiliser, the Polo Classic represents tremendous value-for-money at only $23,990 (rrp).

Launch of the Polo Classic is a significant milestone in Australian automotive history as it is the first Chinese-built passenger vehicle sold in Australia. And while Australia represents a small first step, within the next 3 to 5 years, Volkswagen and its joint venture partners have broad export plans from China.

Volkswagen Group Australia is importing the Polo Classic from Volkswagen’s huge state-of-the-art manufacturing plant in Shanghai. The company’s other Chinese manufacturing centre is in Changchun. Both are amongst the world’s most modern and technologically advanced automotive plants.

Compared to the Polo hatchback, the sedan model is completely re-styled from the B-pillar rearwards to create a homogenous and powerful look. The window line - with its slight upward incline - gives a sense of dynamism, the roof features Volkswagen’s trademark curves and the concise styling of the C-pillar provides aspects that are actually reminiscent of a coupe.

At the rear, the large horizontally divided rear lights and elegantly sculptured panels complete a design that is classically Volkswagen – stylish but free of fuss and ostentation.

Naturally the front retains the stylish four-headlight design that is a distinctive feature of the current Polo. While one of Volkswagen’s German rivals reserves four round headlights for its upmarket prestige models, Volkswagen is happy to feature the design in our entry-level hatchbacks and (now) sedans.

Overall, the Polo Classic is 28 centimetres longer than the hatchback version.

With the rear seatback in place, the Polo Classic offers a remarkable 461 litres of trunk capacity (211 litres more than the hatchback siblings). Fold down the rear seatback and an enormous 1127 litres of storage capacity is available.

Polo’s comfortable ride, pin-sharp steering and precise handling have been unanimously praised since the all-new A04 models were launched in 2002; Polo Classic provides the same traits in a sedan version.

Front suspension is McPherson struts with coil springs and an anti-roll bar while the rear features a torsion beam axle with trailing arms and coil springs.

Under the bonnet is Volkswagen’s 1.6-litre multi-valve engine that delivers 74 kW of power at 5500 rpm and peak torque of 140 Nm at 3250 rpm.

Transmission is a five-speed manual.

Safety features are abundant and combine to make Polo Classic one of the world’s safest small cars.

Included are the high quality, torsionally rigid bodyshell (all important seams are laser-welded), advanced chassis design and standard features such as five three-point seat belts, front and side airbags, and ABS anti-lock brakes with electronic brake-pressure distribution (EBD).

The volume of the front airbag on the drivers’ side is 64 litres and on the front passengers’ side 95 litres. Side airbags (12 litre volume) are standard and have been designed to effectively protect the chest, abdomen and pelvic areas.

Polo Classic also offers comes standard with Volkswagen’s Crash-Optimised Pedal system (COP). Depending on the intensity of the collision, the brake pedal folds forward markedly reducing the risk of foot injuries.

Best of all, the Polo Classic is a Volkswagen, so it has the interior style, quality materials and ergonomics that are the envy of the automotive industry throughout the world.

And while Polo Classic is a small sedan, it provides owners with big peace-of-mind thanks to Volkswagen’s 3-year, 100,000 kms warranty with 24-hour roadside assistance plus a fully galvanized body that comes with a 12-year anti-corrosion perforation warranty.

Announcing the addition to the Polo lineup, Volkswagen Group Australia’s Managing Director, Mr Peter Nochar said: “With our entry level hatchback model priced at just $19,990, Volkswagen Polo does represent outstanding value-for-money and now with a beautiful sedan model to compliment the range, there is no doubt we have the best European compact car range on the market.”

Mr Nochar added that many factors came together simultaneously to make Australia the first export destination for Volkswagen and its Chinese joint venture partners.

“Australia is roughly the same time zone as China, we have a mature, international automotive market with complex local homologation procedures and geographically challenging remote capital cities, so it all came together very well for us to be the first export destination from the Shanghai plant – to provide a ‘trial run’ for future larger export programs to other countries, possibly including Australia again.”

Volkswagen has for some time been the dominant market leader in China’s booming automotive scene. More than 50 per cent of the vehicles currently registered in China are either Volkswagens or Audis.

In 2003 Volkswagen’s 600 Chinese dealerships sold more than 697,000 vehicles (36% increase over 2002) making China the company’s second-largest market (behind Germany but ahead of North America and the UK). By 2007, Volkswagen will be selling more than 1 million vehicles annually in China.

With so much focus currently on the Chinese automotive scene, Volkswagen’s first exports have been major news.

“When I first saw the Polo sedan in Germany I noticed it was a very good-looking car that would be an excellent supplement to our Polo hatchback range and then, when we were advised the car could become the historic first export from China, a ‘small car’ became a ‘big story’ in the Volkswagen world,” Mr Nochar revealed.

Volkswagen Polo Classic 1.6 Specifications
Safety and Security
Airbags Driver and front passenger airbags
  Driver and front passenger side airbags
Anti-theft Engine immobiliser (rolling code)
Body Fully galvanised with 12 year anti-corrosion perforation warranty
  Door side impact protection
  Rigid safety cell with front and rear crumple zones
Brakes Anti-lock Braking System (ABS)
  Electronic Brake-pressure Distribution (EBD)
Child restraint 3 child seat anchor points
Fog lights Rear fog lamp
Head restraints Front height adjustable
  Rear adjustable and removable (3)
Locking Remote central locking with deadlock mechanism (separate release for luggage compartment)
  2 stage unlocking (programmable)
  Automatic locking after takeoff (programmable)
  One touch lock / unlock for driver
  Child safety locks on rear doors
Seat belts Front height adjustable with pre-tensioners and belt force limiters
  3 point seat belts for all passengers
Exterior Equipment / Styling
Colour coding Door handles
  Outer rear view mirrors
  Protective bumper and side moulding strips
Tinted glass Heat insulating tinted glass
Wheels Steel wheels 14 x 6" with 185/60 R14 tyres
  Full size steel spare wheel
Comfort and Convenience
Air conditioning Semi-automatic, CFC free
Cup holders Front and rear
Dust and pollen filter
Entry/warning reflector in front doors
Fuel filler flap Operated with central locking
Grab handles Soft fold away at roof frame
Headlights Halogen twin headlights with clear lens
  Headlight-on warning buzzer
  Combined headlight and fog light switch, internal angle adjustment
Instrumentation Speedometer & tachometer, electronic odometer and tripmeter, service interval display, digital clock, fuel & coolant gauges, low fuel warning light, seat belt warning light, blue adjustable illumination
Interior highlights Two tone interior dashboard and door trim
Interior lighting Front reading lights
  Interior light with time delay
In car entertainment AM/FM radio, theft deterrent warning light and coding
  CD player
  8 speakers, 4 front / 4 rear
Load restraining hooks
Mirrors Electrically heated and adjustable
Power steering Electro-hydraulic
Seating Comfort front seats
  Height adjustment for front seats
  Split folding rear seat backrest and seat base (60:40)
Steering wheel Height and reach adjustable
  4 spoke steering wheel
Storage Central compartment on the dash panel
  Drawers under front seats
  Glove box
  Integrated dashboard shelf
  Front door pockets
Sun visors Driver and passenger
  Centre sun visor
Upholstery Velour seats
Vanity mirrors Driver's and passenger's side illuminated with cover
Windows Power front and rear, with roll-back function, driver with one-touch up-down
  Key operated convenience close and open feature
Wipers 2 speed aero wipers with wash/wipe and intermittent wipe with 4 position delay
Optional Equipment
Metallic / Pearl Effect paint
Technical Specification
Engine 1.6 litre
Type 4 cyl inline petrol
Installation Front transverse
Cubic capacity, litres / cc 1.6 / 1595
Bore/stoke, mm 81.0 / 77.4
Max power, kW @ rpm 74 @ 5500
Max torque, Nm @ rpm 140 @ 3250
Compression ratio 10:1
Fuel system Multi-point injection system
Ignition system Electronic
Exhaust emission control Catalytic converter, oxygen sensors
Fuel type, minimum Premium unleaded 95 RON
Transmission Front wheel drive
Gearbox 5 speed manual
0 - 100km/h 10.9
Top speed, km/h 184
Fuel consumption *
Combined, L / 100km Combined, L / 100km
CO2 emission g/km 190
Fuel tank capacity, litres 45
* Fuel consumption figures according to Australian Design Rule (ADR) 81/01.
The driving style, road and traffic conditions, environmental influences and vehicle condition can in practice lead to consumption figures which may differ from those calculated with these standards.
Running gear
Font axle Independent, McPherson struts and coil springs.
Anti-roll bar
Rear axle Torsion beam axle, trailing arms, coil springs
Steering Electro-hydraulic power assisted rack & pinion steering
Brake systems Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) with
Electronic Brake-pressure Distribution (EBD)
Brakes Front Ventilated discs
  Rear Discs
Turning circle, m 10.6
Unladen vehicle weight, kg 1167 - 1190
Towing capacity Braked, kg 1000
  Unbraked, kg 500
Towbar load limit, kg 50
Exterior Dimensions
Overall length, mm 4179
Width, mm 1650
Height, mm 1465
Wheelbase, mm 2460
Track, mm Front 1435
  Rear 1425
Interior Dimensions
Luggage area volume, L Rear seat upright 461
Luggage area floor length, mm Rear seat upright 964
  Rear seat folded 1584
Luggage area maximum width, mm 981
Width between wheel arches, mm 953
Colour Combinations
Please note metallic and Pearl Effect paint are optional at extra cost.
INTERIOR TRIM Black Black Indigo
Blue PE
Silver M
Polo Classic
Grey - Velour S S S S
Anti-lock Braking System (ABS)
When braking, wheel speed sensors measure the road wheel speed and should one or more wheels start to lock the ABS system reduces brake pressure to that wheel. This prevents the wheels from locking during heavy or emergency braking, enabling the vehicle to remain steerable.
Electronic Brake-pressure Distribution (EBD)
Electronic, more sophisticated means of regulating the ratio of front/rear brake pressure. Settings are varied according to driving and load conditions to ensure each wheel is braked to the optimum extent.

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