Although it will be a little while yet before we know when and how the Volkswagen Polo will arrive Stateside, the safety story is already looking promising. The subcompact VW that's bound for the U.S. for 2011 has achieved a top five-star overall result in tougher new European crash tests.
The latest tests from the Euro NCAP program, released today, give seven out of the eight models an overall five-star score. The VW scored highest in occupant protection of the eight vehicles in this group, but it was technically tied with the Honda Insight in the Adult protection category—both tied at a score of 90 out of 100—but scored two points higher (86 versus 84) in the Child protection category.
Volkswagen declares in a press release that the test "confirms optimal protection for occupants and pedestrians," yet the Polo did not score particularly well in the European test's new Pedestrian category, with an overall score of just 41 percent and the test group's note that "in most areas likely to be struck by an adult's head, poor protection was provided."
Among the other U.S.-bound vehicles tested by the Euro NCAP program were the Honda Insight, Toyota Prius, Subaru Legacy, and the new Kia Sorento, which hasn't yet been unveiled in U.S.-market form. Each of these vehicles also achieved a five-star overall rating.
For the new Polo, VW points to an extremely rigid and optimized body structure, including a "harp," located behind the front bumper cover, that helps provide extra deformation space, lessening the chances of intrusion and leg injuries. The Polo also includes electronic stability control, whiplash-reducing front head restraints, and "a highly effective belt-and-airbag combination."
TheCarConnection.com earlier today posted a preview covering the 2011 Volkswagen Polo, which is roughly the same size as the original Mk1 Volkswagen Rabbit that gathered a strong following in the 1980s. The 2011 Polo will have a strong resemblance to the Golf but more fuel-efficient engines (including possibly a 1.2-liter TDI) and a price tag that will likely start around $14,000.
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