Volkswagen India pauses bookings for the Polo Trendline variant bookings

Volkswagen India is taking safety seriously after a recent bout of NCAP tests on the Polo hatchback it sells here indicated that the car’s Indian variants without airbags failed to score even one star in the five star safety test. Click here for the videos showing Indian cars failing the NCAP safety test. On the other hand, the Polo Highline variant, which gets twin airbags as standard, scored 4 stars on the NCAP rating.

2014 Volkswagen Polo Facelift Pic
2014 Volkswagen Polo Facelift - To be launched in India soon

 

Immediately after the NCAP results, the German car maker went back to the drawing board in India, and added driver and passenger airbags on the Polo’s mid Comfortline variant, as a passive safety feature to boost the hatchback’s NCAP rating, boosting the car’s safety appeal.

A report on NDTV now suggests that Volkswagen has paused bookings for the Trendline (Base) variants of the Polo petrol and diesel models. The pause in bookings is to give Volkswagen time to reconfigure the Trendline variants and add airbags even to the base version of the Polo, thereby raising the car’s safety rating. 

The addition of twin airbags to the Polo Trendline variants is expected to result in a price increase of about 16,000 rupees. Notably, the Polo Comfortline without airbags was priced at 5.38 lakh rupees, ex-showroom Delhi, while the recently added Comfortline variant with twin airbags is priced at 5.54 lakh rupees, the prices reflecting a 16,000 rupee difference.

The additional impetus on safety shows Volkswagen India in good light. The brand has consistently priced its products at a decided premium over similar cars sold by its competitors, stating that the premium it charges is for additional solidity that its cars bring to the table. By adding airbags on even the base variant of the Polo, the German car maker has underscored its emphasis on solid build quality and safety. 

In India, the Polo is sold with two petrol and one turbo diesel engine options. The petrol engines get manual and automatic gearboxes while the diesel engine makes do with a manual gearbox. Although the car has a reputation for being a well engineered car with sure footed handling and a solid build quality, the Polo continues to be a tepid seller in India. The reasons for the Polo’s slow sales may be attributed to high ownership costs and poor after sales service.