The Polo Harlekin changed in 1995 from a playful, multi-colored advertising tool into the craziest Polo that Volkswagen ever built. It was based on the third generation of the Volkswagen Polo, with the internal designation 6N. It was the first Volkswagen Polo that you could order as a five-door. Also special at the time was the block-box principle that Volkswagen used in the Polo. This consisted of four clear building blocks: drive, equipment, options and color. This allowed the customer to compose his own favorite Polo in a well-organized manner.
Block box principle Polo 6N
To visualize the block box principle, Volkswagen came up with a corresponding color code. Blue stood for the powertrain, yellow for the equipment, red for the options and mint green for the available paint colors. About the block box principle – or the Baukastensystem– to draw attention, Volkswagen built 20 Polos in which all these colors were reflected in the bodywork. They were set up as eye-catchers at major dealers and used for marketing activities.
Polo Harlekin in production
A lot of consumers liked the four-colored Polos so much that they asked the dealer if they could order one. Volkswagen went overboard and decided in 1995 to build a thousand units. Because of its jolly appearance, the car was renamed Polo Harlekin, after the colorful costume that wore a traditional harleview.
During production, the body panels of one and the same car were not all painted separately. For each Polo Harlekin, Volkswagen built four normal Polos in the colors blue, red, yellow and mint green. Then the hood, tailgate, doors, bumpers and mirrors were exchanged according to a fixed pattern.
How many Polo’s Harlekin have been built?
The official base color of a Polo Harlekin is that of the roof, sills and engine compartment. But exactly which color combination you got as a customer remained a surprise until the day of delivery. The first thousand Polo’s Harlekin flew like hot Kaiserbrötchen over the counter, after which Volkswagen decided to continue with it for a while. In total, more than 3800 Polo’s Harlekin have been produced. The Polo Harlekin has never been officially imported into the Netherlands. Nevertheless, several Harlekins have come to our country via private import, and there are also fakes: ordinary Polos that have been painted in four different colors by a hobbyist.
Modern tribute to Polo Harlekin
As a tribute to the original Polo Harlekin, the Dutch Volkswagen importer has disguised one copy of the current Polo as a Harlekin. In 2020, the Volkswagen Polo was one of the best-selling cars in the Netherlands – almost 9,000 passed the dealer threshold. And who knows what is possible if enough people come to the dealer next year for a new Harlekin. There is probably a car wraapper who wants to put his energy into this!
Will the craziest Volkswagen Polo ever return?
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