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How good is the new Volkswagen Passat?

April 11, 2018 10:06 IST

The Volkswagen Passat comes feature-packed, offers good driveability and practicality in an understated form. Indian automobile website MotorBeam.com finds out all about it.

Volkswagen is back in the premium end of the market again but this time with a sedan, the eighth-generation Passat to be precise.

The Passat was discontinued in India for a couple of years due to lack of sales.

In terms of looks and design, clearly, the Volkswagen Passat is understated and that doesn't mean it doesn't look premium or sophisticated.

 

It really will not turn heads. No nonsense is what the designers had in mind while designing the Passat.

The bold 3-slat chrome grille flanked by the LED headlamps on either side and the wide bumper with LED fog lamps adorn the front fascia.

At the side, there is a strong shoulder line that runs from the front fender till the tail-lights and the 10-spoke alloy wheels give the Passat some attitude.

The rear has been done in typical VW fashion.

While the rear bumper looks bulky, the wraparound LED tail-lights look trendy.

The cabin of the Passat has been finished in rich quality materials which give some sense of premiumness.

While the upper part of the neatly laid out dashboard might remind you of an Audi due to the continuously flowing AC vents design, the steering wheel is borrowed from other cheaper Volkswagen cars.

Behind the steering wheel is the twin-pod instrument cluster with a central MID display.

The centre console houses a touchscreen infotainment system that comes paired with an 8-speaker audio system.

The infotainment system churns out good audio and is very intuitive to use.

The front seats offer tremendous levels of comfort and support while the rear seat slightly lacks in under-thigh support.

That said, the rear seat space is plenty with good knee room and headroom.

The front seats get heating and memory function while the driver's seat also gets a massage function.

Considering that most of the customers of the Passat would be chauffeur-driven, the automaker should have offered massage function for the rear seat instead of the driver's seat.

The transmission hump at the rear makes it best for 2 adults.

The Passat comes with features like a panoramic sunroof, 3-zone automatic climate control, Easy Open sensor controlled boot lid, 60:40 split seats, keyless entry and start/stop button.

The Passat is offered currently with a single engine option in India which is the tried and tested 2.0-litre TDI diesel motor that churns out 177 HP of power and 350 Nm of torque.

The powertrain comes mated to a 6-speed DSG gearbox.

While the TDI motor ensures good driveability, the NVH levels aren't all that great.

You can hear the engine noise inside the cabin.

The engine and gearbox work in tandem and the Passat responds quickly to throttle inputs.

However, in stop-go traffic, the gearbox does feel like it's taking its own sweet time as it hesitates before downshifting which leads to a marginal delay along with some jerks.

If you wish to manually take control of things, the Passat also offers steering-mounted paddle-shifters.

There are 3 driving modes which alter the steering, engine and suspension - Comfort, Auto and Sport.

Drive the Passat sedately and it will return you a mileage of 11-14 kms to the litre.

The Passat is quite stiffly sprung and at lower speeds you do feel the bad patches of roads.

The steering is precise and direct and the car remains stable and composed at high speeds.

All-wheel disc brakes do a good job of shedding speeds while the grip from the 17-inch tyres is good if not great.

The lower grade Comfortline gets 16-inch wheels.

The German carmaker's after-sales service network is quite well spread across metro cities and Tier 2 cities/towns as well.

In terms of safety equipment, the Passat gets 9 airbags, ABS with EBD, Hill Start Assist, electromechanical parking brake, auto hold function, ISOFIX child seat mounts, front and rear parking sensors, auto headlamps and wipers and hands-free parking.

The Volkswagen Passat comes feature-packed, offers good driveability and practicality in an understated form.

The only two downsides to the Passat are its price and the lack of WOW! factor.

The Passat is clearly for someone who has the German big badge money and wants all the latest tech in his car in a mature and understated package.

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