2017 Ford Figo Sports vs Volkswagen Polo GT TDI comparison
Published on Jul 06, 2017 02:22:00 PM
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The Volkswagen Polo GT TDI for a long time was the only performance-oriented hatch with a diesel engine on offer. Now, however, it faces some stiff competition from another diesel-warm hatch, the Ford Figo Sports Edition. Both make an almost similar amount of power, come with only manual gearboxes and promise to be frugal and fun. We put the two through their paces to see which one makes the bigger impression.
What are they like on the outside?
The Polo GT TDI and the Figo S bear a strong resemblance to their regular hatch counterparts. The only thing differentiating the Polo GT from the standard Polo is some 'GT' badges and the more powerful motor. The Figo S, on the other hand, stands apart by way of a new honeycomb design on the front grille, smoked headlamps, black roof, black outside mirrors, body vinyl (at the doors and rear bumper), a new roof spoiler and 15-inch blacked-out alloys with meatier 195/55-section tyres. The larger wheels and tyres make the Sports Edition look a whole lot more attractive than the standard Figo. Amongst these two, it's the Polo with the more subdued design and the Figo with the racier look.
What are they like inside?
The cabins of the two cars feature a few sporty touches. The changes in the Polo GT TDI are limited to different seat upholstery, GT-badged door sills and aluminium-finished pedals. The Polo GT TDI's dashboard is identical to the regular Polo's, with a restrained, clean design conveying a message of quality build. Importantly, a touchscreen infotainment system takes pride of place on the dash. The Polo's steering wheel is flat-bottomed (from the stock car), and the controls are tactile and intuitive. The seats are covered in fabric upholstery and are generally comfortable, well-padded and supportive. Space for the front passengers is adequate, though it could get cramped in the rear for taller passengers.
Changes inside the Figo S aren't substantial either but they do help the overall ambience inside. The things that set the Sports Edition apart from the regular Figo are a leather-wrapped steering (it's great to hold), red double-stitching for the upholstery and gloss black inserts on the dash as opposed to the regular car's silver bits. The Figo S's dash doesn't have the clean look of the Polo GT TDI's and the design may not be to everyone's liking, but it's adequately functional. The central console is dominated by more old-school buttons and a monochrome screen media system with Bluetooth. However, Ford has a clever 'dock' on the dash to hold your phone in landscape mode if you wish to use it for navigation. The seats are also large, fabric-upholstered and comfortable. Space, in general, is more generous than in the Polo GT and three will find the space at the rear acceptable in terms of both legroom and width.
In terms of convenience features, both cars get automatic climate control, driver's side seat height adjust, a multifunction steering wheel, Bluetooth and USB. The Polo does offer more though with a touchscreen infotainment system, parking camera and sensors, cruise control, along with a steering wheel that's adjustable for rake and reach; the Figo's steering only gets rake adjustment.
On the safety front, both cars are almost matched. They get anti-lock brakes and dual front airbags as standard.
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