Johannesburg - South Africa’s two most popular hatchbacks both wear a Polo badge, but for the most part they cater for different crowds.

The Polo Vivo is based on the previous-generation Polo, and offers a more affordable package, while the latest-generation Polo flies the flag at the upper end of the compact hatch game with a more technologically modern and feature-packed package for those willing to pay more to have the latest and greatest.

However, despite the new Polo being arguably more desirable, its more affordable Polo Vivo sibling actually has a better resale value, according to Darryl Jacobson, managing director of True Price.

When analysing the selling prices of vehicles registered between 2017 and 2019, with between 40 000km and 80 000km on the clock, True Price found that the average Polo Vivo retained 70.66 percent of its original resale price, versus 67.62 percent for the new Polo.

It’s worth noting, however, that this data comes from repossession auctions only, so it’s not necessarily a reflection of prices paid at dealer level, but it is still an indication of what people are prepared to pay for these vehicles. 

In our view, the Polo Vivo’s better-value price tag as new is what gives it the resale value edge as a percentage because let’s face it - the used vehicle market is a great equaliser.

The Polo Vivo is predominantly fitted with older-generation normally aspirated engines, and currently sells for between R192 700 and R263 800 when new, while the Polo, which is fitted only with TSI turbo engines, retails for between R242 300 and R398 400.

“This is pure economy in action” Jacobson exclaimed. “The Polo may be the better vehicle, but - right now, in South Africa – affordability rules.”

True Price offers free vehicle evaluations and claims to have around 30 000 statistics in its database at any given time, none more than six months old.

IOL Motoring