Launched: 2018 Volkswagen Polo Vivo

Vivo ready to continue as best-seller

Since its inception in 2010, the Polo Vivo has been the best-selling car on the market. With the discontinuing of the “Citi” (MKI Golf) models, the Vivo became known as one of the best “value-for-money” packages. It sold 193,343 units since 2010. We were recently invited by Volkswagen South Africa to attend the launch of the all-new Polo Vivo in Port Elizabeth.

With a strong focus on safety, quality, space and comfort, the S.A.-built Vivo will once again aim to stand at the top of the leaderboard.

Built on a hatchback format, the new Vivo follows the fifth-series design of the Polo itself. Driver assistance, a new TSi engine, infotainment system and a 6-speed manual gearbox will be some of the new features that you will be able to find in the Vivo.

Similar to the current sixth-generation Polo range, Vivos will be sold in the Trendline, Comfortline and Highline packages. Topping this range will be the GT Vivo.

The Interior

Inside the Vivo, customers can find a standard (for Trendline and Comfortline) Radio 140G SD/USB/Bluetooth package with four speakers. The Highline and GT will feature six speakers with a colour touchscreen (which will include App-connect).

Safety features include ABS, alarm and remote central locking as well as front fog lights (except for the Trendline model).

Another improvement from the previous model is boot space. This has been increased to 280 litres, with 952 litres available when the rear seats are folded down. This is thanks to the body being 3,972mm long, 1682mm wide and 1,462mm tall.

The exterior

From the outside, the new Vivo definitely looks very interesting, with 14-inch steel wheels for the Trendline and Comfortline. The 15-inch “Estrada” alloy wheel can be bought as an optional extra. The Highline has good-looking 16-inch “Rivazza” alloy wheels, with the GT featuring 17-inch “Mirabeau” wheel.

The engines

The Trendline is driven by a 1.4 litre that produces 55kW (at 4,800rpm) and 130Nm (at 3,750rpm). Fuel economy is a claimed 5.7L/100km.

Driven by a similar 1.4-liter engine, the Comfortline manages 63kW and 132Nm. Its fuel consumption is slightly higher at a claimed 5.9L/100km.

Highline has the biggest engine (1.6L), however, will not be the most powerful in the Vivo range. The engine produces 77kW or 153Nm (at 3,800rpm), enabling it to reach the 100km/h mark in 10.8 seconds.

Featuring a 6-speed manual or automatic gearbox, the Highline has claimed fuel consumption of 6.2L/ 100km.

The GT may have the smallest engine (1.0 litre) in the Vivo line-up but it has the most power (81kW or 200Nm at just 2,000rpm) and best fuel economy of 4.6L/100km.

The GT follows a nostalgic route as it has the same amount of power as the first-ever Golf GTi, yet with a smaller and more efficient engine.

The new Vivo may be an entry-level car and affordable alternative, but it hits the market as a better-rounded car with regards to the overall package of safety, comfort, fuel efficiency, practicality and technological improvements.

The 1.4 Trendline only costs R600 more than the previous Polo Vivo entry level. Taking into account that we are currently facing steep inflation, and that Volkswagen has upgraded the Trendline so much from the previous version, this is quite remarkable.

Secondly, South-Africans will also have pride in knowing that the Vivo range (except for the GT’s engine) is manufactured in South Africa and will only be sold in Sub-Sahara Africa.

Even with its low profile rims, the Vivo GT is very quiet on the road. Its 1.0-liter engine astounded us as it exceeded the 120kph mark in 3rd gear, equally capable of delivering enough power if you overtake in 6th gear. Although it only has 3 cylinders, it is even quieter than the brand new Polo Highline.

Lastly, it’s worth noting that the Vivo brand rewrote history in 2017, when it sold more units in its ‘end-of-production’ year than in the previous time. No other manufacturer has ever managed this significant feat, indicating the success and trustworthiness of the Vivo brand.


  • 4 Trendline (55kW) = R179 900
  • 4 Comfortline (63kW) = R192 000
  • 6 Comfortline (77kW) Tiptronic = R221 900
  • 6 Highline (77kW) = R214 900
  • 0 TSi GT (81kW) = R245 000

*All Polo Vivo’s will come with a 3 year / 120 000km warranty and a 6 year anti-corrosion warranty.

Text: Franco Theron
Pictures: Galimoto Media

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