SEE | Tick all the options on a new VW Polo R-Line and you'll pay more for it than a GTI version


  • The latest generation VW Polo R-Line is priced from R445 500. 
  • Using VW's online configurator, the total cost of all the extras for the Polo amounts to R86 850. 
  • The Polo GTI's pricing starts from R514 500. 

You can't talk about Volkswagen and not mention their most popular model, the Polo. This model serves as the bread-and-butter staple of the German automaker in South Africa and clinches top-seller status on numerous occasions. The brand's T-SUV range makes up for other good-volume sellers, and the next-generation Amarok should also bring in higher numbers once it's launched locally in December.

Even though the Polo has existed since 1975, South Africa got its first taste of the B-segment offering – in Polo Playa form – from 1996 until 2002. Since then, each generation has been for sale in the country, even though the price of each has risen tremendously over the years. Despite that, people still commit to debit orders every month. 

REVIEW | Forget personal feelings, here's why Volkswagen's Polo is worth its salt

VW Polo R-Line
VW Polo R-Line

Perhaps the only downside of owning a Polo these days is that (exterior) parts like the badge and headlights are stolen by criminals because there are so many of them on the road. What more can be said about the Volkswagen Polo that isn't already known? It's one of the best-selling nameplates in South Africa, rivalling only the Toyota Hilux in terms of monthly sales, with just about 2 000 units finding new homes. 

As a bookmark, the automaker's Kariega plant has manufactured over 30 000 Polo models in the first quarter of 2022. The price of the Polo, and brand-new vehicles in general, have risen tremendously over the decades due to rising inflation and government taxes. There once was a time in automotive eutopia when you could buy a brand-new, fully-specced (fifth-generation) Golf GTI for less than R300 000. Those were great times. Now, you're paying more than R700 000 for the brand's halo Golf model.

Tilting and sliding panoramic sunroof in the new V
Tilting and sliding panoramic sunroof in the new Volkswagen Polo R-Line

Of course, you can still find one at the same price in the pre-owned market, but it will have covered a fair amount of mileage, and previous owners have definitely given it a proper throttling - no pun intended. 

Speaking of fully-specced models, the Polo R-Line is the derivative just below the GTI in the range, priced from R445 500, while the Polo range starts from R329 300. When you start adding optional extras, that is where things can get a bit pricey. 

Extra, Extra  

According to VWSA, the panoramic sunroof is the most popular optional feature in their model range - especially in the Golf and Polo GTI models. Park Assist with the rear-view camera is the most popular in the T-Cross and T-Roc models. It's clear that customers don't mind spending that little bit extra for creature comforts. 

Like many other automakers, Volkswagen offers a broad scope of optional extras, allowing for tailor-made wheels. All these added extras add to the car's overall value, so if and when it comes to trade-in or selling time, it will warrant a higher price. These optional extras also push up the monthly instalment – depending on the chosen options. 

Using Volkswagen's nifty online configurator, this is what you can expect to pay for a fully-specced Volkswagen Polo in R-Line trim: 

VW Polo R-Line options list and prices.
VW Polo R-Line options list and prices.

Based on the above, a customer that specs their R-Line out with everything offered is better off buying the GTI (priced from R514 500). Keep in mind the GTI already comes with standard features like IQ. Light LED Matrix Headlights (R15 900) and 17-inch alloy wheels (R4 900) – both of which you'll have to pay extra on the R-Line. Not to mention, it's also faster, so it makes sense just to get the GTI. 

That being said, not everyone wants the performance that comes with the GTI, so the R-Line or one of its 'lesser' trim levels with the option of adding extra features makes more sense. 

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