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Volkswagen Polo GTI R5 rally car revealed. Image by Volkswagen.

Volkswagen Polo GTI R5 rally car revealed
Mighty Polo from Volkswagen Motorsport is a 272hp customer rally car.
<< earlier Volkswagen article     later Volkswagen article >>


News homepage -> Volkswagen news

Newer articles featuring 2018 Volkswagen Polo

2018-09-06: Driven: Volkswagen Polo GTI DSG
2018-04-20: First drive: Volkswagen Polo GTI
2018-01-11: Driven: Volkswagen Polo Beats

What's all this about?

Volkswagen Motorsport has revealed the all-new Polo GTI R5 rally car at an event in Mallorca, showing off a customer machine that is aimed at the international level of rallying that's one step below the World Rally Championship (WRC). Using know-how from its four years of dominance in the WRC with the Polo R (from 2012-2016), Volkswagen Motorsport is understandably quite proud of the R5, which shares some details with the forthcoming roadgoing Polo GTI.

Such as?

The steel chassis is taken from the road car production facility in Pamplona, Spain, while the R5 also uses a turbocharged, four-cylinder, direct injection petrol engine for its power. But that's about where the similarities end.

How so?

Well, it's only a 1.6-litre engine, whereas the road car has 2.0 litres to play with. But don't think the R5 is down on power. It delivers a huge 272hp and 400Nm from that 1.6, which is channelled to all corners of the car via permanent four-wheel drive and a close ratio, five-speed racing transmission. Safety requirements from the FIA dictate there's a rollcage and other safety features, while the whole rig weighs in at 1,320kg. That power in that size body means the GTI R5 can rip from 0-62mph in 4.1 seconds.

At what stage is the current testing schedule and when can we expect to see the R5 in action?

Initial tests on tarmac and gravel have already been conducted in France throughout November, while Volkswagen Motorsport has decamped over here to the UK for December for more shakedown work. The GTI R5 should be homologated by summer 2018, with the first deliveries to customer sports teams - and its first competitive outings - due in the latter half of the year.

Any quotes from the team behind it?

"The Polo GTI R5 came through the initial tests without any problems," said VW Motorsport's technical director Francois-Xavier Demaison. "The feedback from the test drivers was very positive. It is obviously beneficial to be able to call upon an experienced team of engineers and mechanics, who helped to develop the Polo that won the world championship. And it goes without saying that, as we have in the past, we are also taking advantage of the close and excellent co-operation with the colleagues in the technical development department in Wolfsburg, as well as our Skoda colleagues, who have been offering their customers an R5 car since 2015."

Matt Robinson - 5 Dec 2017

Earlier articles featuring 2018 Volkswagen Polo

2017-11-07: Volkswagen Motorsport to take new Polo rallying
2017-09-01: First drive: 2018 Volkswagen Polo
2017-06-16: New Volkswagen Polo includes 2.0-litre GTI

2018 VW Polo GTI R5 rally. Image by Volkswagen.2018 VW Polo GTI R5 rally. Image by Volkswagen.2018 VW Polo GTI R5 rally. Image by Volkswagen.     - Volkswagen road tests
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