While the C-cegment hot hatch arms race has resulted in cars nudging the 400bhp mark, things are a little more sedate in the class below. Most of the major B-segment hot hatches hover around the 200bhp mark, but there may be a rather significant development to change that: a VW Polo R.
The MKVI Polo GTI (below) already uses the same ‘EA888’ 2.0-litre engine found in the 306bhp Golf R but with a lower state of tune, and turning up the anger would apparently be quite easy. “There is enough room for all the extra cooling in the Polo, for sure,” VW small car lines boss Ralf Kölling told Autocar. The four-wheel drive system in the Golf R fits too, and there are already prototypes in existence.
But will VW pull the trigger? That remains to be seen. On the one hand, VW is expanding the R range right now - five-cylinder-powered Tiguan R prototypes have been spotted testing, and a T-Roc R is thought to be in the works too. But a Polo R could be tricky to place in the range, potentially being a little too close to the performance of the Golf R. In fact, it’d probably be quicker unless VW seriously pegged back the power.
Right now, all we can do is cross our fingers wait…