Dan Read03 March 2009

Geneva show: VW Polo BlueMotion

VW unveils the world’s most efficient five-seater, but it’s still a concept. Just

VW Polo BlueMotion

Pride of place on Volkswagen's somewhat sparsely populated Geneva stand is this, the Polo BlueMotion concept.

That's 'concept' in the sense of ‘not really a concept at all - just give us a few more months to finish building it'. Up close, the Polo looks completely production ready, and a fair bit sharper than the current model, thanks to a faintly Scirocco-aping front end.

So what is it? Well, VW is calling the Polo BlueMotion concept ‘the most efficient five-seater in the world', and the figures are indeed impressive: 86.1mpg and just 87g/km of CO2. The new Prius manages a piffling 72.4mpg and 89g/km of CO2.

The impressive stats are down to a new 1.2-litre common-rail turbodiesel, along with an automatic stop-start system - similar to that seen on the Mini D - and KERS-style regenerative braking technology.

All of which could easily make production, but VW says it needs just a little more time to tweak the technology. "I anticipate that we will be able to go into production in February 2010," says VW's development chief Dr Ulrich Hackenberg.

OK, it's not the most visually inspiring thing we've ever seen, but you can't knock the Polo's eco-credentials. Reckon it'll usurp the Prius as the green car of choice next year? Fat chance, eh?

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