After a long hiatus, yours truly is back to blogging because the Polo Sedan CBU that I own has undergone another facelift ( and gained a new name to be exact!). I am intrigued when I heard that the Volkswagen Vento, the new name for Polo Sedan, comes with 3 variants - Trendline, Comfortline and Highline; where the latter is equipped with the infamous 1.2 litre TSI engine and a 7-speed DSG gearbox.
I'm lucky that the showroom has all 3 variants as its display units, so a clear differentiation can be done visually. While the black car above is the Highline, the best item to differentiate it among the 3 variants is the 215/45 wide and low profile tyres with 16-inch 'Syenit' two-tone alloys, which is one inch above the other 2 variants with 185/60R15 'Riverside' 7-spoke alloys.
The Vento bears some resemblance of the Passat, isn't it? It's not a bad thing, considering the facelift has given the Vento a more upmarket design. Below, on the left is the Comfortline while the right is the entry variant Trendline. Being the base model, the Trendline loses out chrome bar and fog lights in the lower air vent. Other than that, it is mostly identical to the Comfortline.
The rear gained a new graphics for the taillights, a newly positioned chrome bar on the tailgate and a redesigned rear bumper.
One improvement over my CBU unit is the electronic latch found on the tailgate, much more convenient than using the latch on the driver door or the remote to unlock the tailgate.
As for the Highline 1.2 litre TSI engine, it generates 105PS at 5,000rpm and 175Nm of torque from 1,550-4100rpm. On the other hand, the 1.6 litre naturally aspirated MPI engine produces 105PS at 5,250rpm and 153Nm at 3,800rpm. I have always feel that the 1.6 litre NA engine is just adequate to power the Polo Sedan, so this 1.2 TSI engine should be a great addition for drivers who want more power!
Interior wise, you will notice the steering wheel in the pic below looks a bit bare. Yes, it belongs to the Trendline, where it comes with basic features and chrome bits here and there are omitted. No front center armrest and rear aircond for Trendline as well.
Now this looks a little better in the Comfortline, with piano black finishing and control buttons on the flat-bottomed steering wheel. It comes with Climatronic automated air-conditioning, leather-wrapped steering wheel and gear knob, front center armrest with rear air-conditioned. Both Trendline and Comfortline are equipped with ABS, EBD, Intelligent Crash Response System (ICRS) and the Comfortline gained additional 2 side airbags, cruise control and Bluetooth connectivity. Thus, I would say the previous Polo Sedan CKD units are on par with what the Comfortline is offering now.
As for the Highline, it gained 'Cable' fabric upholstery. Volkswagen should offer leather seats for the Highline, in my opinion. However, I feel that the seats are padded more generously than the CBU units. Safety wise, it adds on hill assist control and Electronic Stability Programme (ESC) which finally make itself eligible for 5-star ASEAN NCAP rating! It will be perfect if it comes with 6 airbags though.
One thing I noticed is the graphic of the digital instrument panel in the Vento (left) seems like a downgrade from the one available in the CBU unit (right). It just does not look as premium.
I would say the pricing (OTR without insurance) is well planned:
Trendline is low enough to make buyers of usual Japanese B-segment think twice, while the Highline is well below the RM100k mark. Although the top-spec of Honda City is better equipped than the Highline, but the performance and handling should give the Japanese competitor a run for its money.
Worried about the TSI and DSG reliability? The Vento comes with 5 years unlimited mileage warranty and 5 years mobility guarantee. But then, my experience with VW service center as well as showroom were not that pleasant either...
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