Monday, March 14, 2016

VW Passat Test Drive. Part three.



As I said before, I think the Passat is actually quite handsome in real life.

It does have an upscale feel and look. I know most people on this blog love to hate it.
But I realize this is for a different audience.
Maybe a more conservative one. This is basically for people who would consider a Camry.
Or can't afford an Audi. This gives you a bit of Audi feel and look for the price of a Camry.

I also love to criticize boring designs. But I also realize that something like the Passat will age quite well. Like most previous generations Jettas.





Same thing inside. 

It's not the future in here. Actually, many bits have been around for years. Like the instruments pictured above. The same stuff we've seen in many VWs for many, many years.
So it's familiar.
And actually still fine.

My test car was an SE model. Which still had an old fashion key.
No fancy futuristic shifter here either.

As a matter of fact, the whole thing felt quite old fashion. But in a rather pleasant way.
Everything is familiar, and everything works well.

Every bits feel solid and well put together. The standard 6 speaker stereo sounds great (Better than some high end systems out there)





Everything is big in the Passat. The back seat is one of the roomiest out there.
And so is the trunk. (And you can fold the back seats for even more space)

The back seat is actually comparable to the Impala and the Avalon. More so than the Malibu and Camry.
Which makes it quite a bargain if you are looking for sheer space.
(The well equipped SE starts at $26 280)

Car play worked perfectly. It is a pleasure to use and beats anything else I have tried.

Like I mentioned before, I really appreciated the nice detailing of the interior. There are many small nice touches everywhere.
And the trim used in the revised 2016 model is much nicer looking than before.

Small details that actually make a big difference.
The one strange thing is how short the front hood feels from inside.
It feels like the cabin has been pushed way forward and there is no hood left.
Plus, the dashboard is not deep at all. Which ads to that strange feeling .

But after a few days, I did get used to it.


The 1.8 Liter Turbo is, like most VW engines, a bit rough at first.
But it settles down quickly. Then it shows plenty of power. (The turbo really makes a difference.)
The 6 speed auto is fine. Although not the smoothest at low speed.
The steering is a bit too light around town. But firms up nicely in turns.

The ride is very smooth and quiet at all time.
Which does lead to a little bit of front end wallowing on the freeway.
The 1.8 Turbo Passat is rated at 25City/38HWY.
I observed 23/42.

With these numbers, I don't think VW should even remotely try to bring the diesel back in the US.
In the Passat, the rating was 32/42. (Although I did get over 50HWY on the "Mega Polute" mode)

As I mentioned earlier, the Passat does have 2 personalities.

 It is very quick and sporty on one hand,  thanks to its turbo engine,
On the other hand, it is a very quiet and relaxed old fashion cruiser.With a rather light steering.
So I  am not sure who the intended target is.
It is a bit soft to really feel like a true German car.
Although it does feel like a tank. With super solid doors.

Ata bit over $26 000, it is quite a bargain if you're looking for full size room.
This would be a great Lyft/Uber car.
It drives great, and has that giant back seat.

For that price, the SE includes that great 6 speaker stereo, rear view camera, CarPlay, Sunroof, Leatherette (Vinyl), heated seats, power driver seat.
Which is really good.
My car had a $1095 LED package which looked great.

So this is quite a nice car for the price.

But I do understand that VW is currently in a state of turmoil.
Especially in the US.
It might be difficult for most people to even consider buying one of their models.
Which is too bad.

I hear reliability has improved quite a bit.
And this Passat I drove for a week was truly enjoyable.


Here is one last pic of a a nice detail. Why not...

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

i see straight lines, i see boring, i see silver/grey, i see yawn, i see a defunct company..........

Anonymous said...

This has grown on me quite a bit.

- Fusioptimasx

Anonymous said...

This is one reason why I bought a Sonata. My first Asian car ever.

Anonymous said...

Would you be so kind as to tell us how the LED lights worked at night. Were they an improvement from the standard halogens? Thank you.

Anonymous said...

ok....listen up...I owned a 1995 Altima, loved it, great solid car, this interior is identical, 21 YEARS later!!!!!!!! Look it up, vince do a side by side of this and the 1995-96 Altima interior