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May 12, 2020

1996 VW Polo Harlequin

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From ArsTechnica:

VW made 3,100 of these multicolored Polo Harlequins.

Each started life on the production line as one of the four individual colors, before panels started being swapped.

You'll have to read "A Medium-Sized Book of Boring Car Trivia" to find out how you can tell what that starting color was.

From Wikipedia:

Polo Harlekin

1024px-VW_Polo_III_Harlekin
In Europe, a limited edition "Harlekin" model was released in 1995.
 
The Polo Harlekin featured multi-colored body panels with a symmetrical combination of Tornado Red, Ginster Yellow, Pistachio Green, and Chagall Blue.
 
Harlekin Polos used the 1.6 petrol engine and featured special."Joker" pattern seats and bespoke gear knob and steering wheel.
 
Originally limited to 1,000, around 3,800 of this series were produced.
 
2,500 Polo Harlekins were made in the U.K. between 1996 and 1998.
 
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No, honestly. 1996 Polo Harlequin was definitely no joke!
 
One from the archives today.
 
The coming of April Fool's Day reminded us of this press advertisement from 1996.
 
Detailing the arrival of the Polo Harlequin special edition, this advert states that the colorful model was just one of several new Polo variations due to go on sale.
 
On sale in the UK not long after its appearance at the 1995 London Motor Show, the Polo Harlequin was based on the 1.4 CL.
 
The car featured its own unique upholstery, driver's airbag, GLX "sports bumpers," white indicators, and darkened rear light clusters
 
The car was made in batches of four (Yellow, Pistachio Green, Chagall Blue and Flash Red were the colorways) and the customer could not specify a certain panel to be a certain color — the color combination that the car arrived in would be a complete surprise.
 
The price at launch in April 1996 (five-door only) was £11,095.
 
It's believed that Volkswagen UK sold just 113 examples, of which 61 are alleged to be still on the road [this is a 2012 post], although many cars have been reportedly resprayed a single color.
 
The significance of April Fool's Day? The advertisement above was placed in the Daily Express on April 1, 1996!

From howmanyleft.co.uk:

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As of the end of 2019, 33 of these cars were still on the road in the UK.

May 12, 2020 at 10:01 AM | Permalink


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