Volkswagen Polo hatchback (2009-2017) - Reliability & safety

The Volkswagen Polo is solidly built and uses tried-and-tested components, plus the recent facelift introduced a raft of standard kit

Carbuyer Rating

3.7 out of 5

Reliability & safety Rating

3.7 out of 5

The Volkswagen Polo has always traded on a reputation for quality and workmanship. However, in recent years it seems that the German company hasn’t always been able to deliver on this promise. This latest results show the Polo doesn't quite hit the mark when it comes to reliability.

VW Polo reliability

The Volkswagen Polo was rated poorly for reliability in our 2017 Driver Power owner satisfaction survey of cars currently on sale in the UK. Of the owners who responded, 11.3% reported experiencing a problem with their car at least once.

Owners are pleased with low running costs and the infotainment system, but less blown away by the Polo's performance and practicality.


The Polo's 'small but tough' marketing tagline rings true when it comes to safety: it was awarded five stars when it was crash-tested by Euro NCAP. All models come with electronic stability control and anti-whiplash headrests, a full complement of airbags, hill hold and a system that locks the brakes after a crash to help prevent secondary impacts.

The Polo is also available with a raft of extra safety kit. This includes city emergency braking, which automatically brakes the car to prevent low-speed accidents. Also included in this price is active cruise control that can match the speed of the car in front. However, it’s worth bearing in mind that this extra kit is only available on SE models and above that aren’t fitted with the 1.0-litre three-cylinder engine.

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