Test Volkswagen Passat: Why the new Passat becomes lonely

Better than ever, few opportunities. We test the new Volkswagen Passat. The Volkswagen Passat was once an important test.

Until recently, a test of the Volkwagen Passat was by definition important. However, the Volkswagen Passat that we are currently testing is no longer that important. Especially because the segment in which the Passat is released almost no longer exists.

A test of a Volkswagen Passat and it is not important?

No, because until recently a test of the Volkswagen Passat was a test in the most important part of the (business) market: the middle class or the D-segment. But that segment is almost dead. Cars such as the Ford Mondeo, Opel Insignia, Renault Talisman and Citroën C5 have disappeared for this reason. Of the volume brands, only Peugeot still has a car in this segment: the 508. But while it is very focused on design, the new Volkswagen Passat is a traditional D-segmenter with a lot of space. The new Passat is also only available as a station wagon, or Variant. And it is spacious. Almost 700 liters of luggage space and a back seat where you can sit out. Volkswagen itself says that the new Passat has become a premium product and must therefore compete against cars such as the Mercedes C-class and BMW 3-series.

And how premium does the Volkswagen Passat come out of the test?

Reasonable. The Passat has beautiful screens, optionally or not, the finish is extremely solid and the use of materials is tasteful. But compared to a C-class or 3-series it is just a bit too ordinary. By the way, it works ergonomically well. Especially if you take the time to set the shortcuts in the multimedia system so that you can quickly operate what you want while driving. In addition, the physical buttons on the steering wheel are back at Volkswagen, making the annoying touch buttons and sliders disappear.

Test Volkswagen Passat: Why the new Passat becomes lonely

Easily operable touchscreens and physical buttons on the steering wheel: party in the Volkswagen Passat!

How does the Volkswagen Passat drive in this test?

Well, probably better than you expect. Just like the Golf, the Volkswagen Passat is also on the MQB platform in this test. Longer cars such as the Passat sometimes suffer from the feeling that there is a lot of car following you on this platform. But Volkswagen has found a solution: Dynamic Chassis Control Pro. In short, these are shock absorbers that regulate the inward and outward stroke with their own valve, so that the damping maintains more control over the wheel movement. It makes the Passat comfortable while the grip is really good. Don’t expect 3-series sportiness or C-class comfort, but you do expect a car that drives confidently and predictably under all circumstances.

What engines are there in the Volkswagen Passat?

In this first test of the Volkswagen Passat we can drive the 1.5 eTSI. That is the well-known 1.5-liter four-cylinder turbo engine with variable turbine geometry and cylinder deactivation, linked to a seven-speed DSG dual-clutch automatic transmission. It delivers 150 hp and 250 Nm at 1,500-3,500 rpm and that is sufficient for the Passat, but no more than that. Two plug-in hybrids will follow in the short term, with the 1.5 being supported by a 115 hp electric motor that is powered by a 19.7 kWh battery. That electric motor is always 115 hp strong, but there will be a variant where the 1.5 delivers 150 hp and one where the 1.5 delivers 177 hp. The system power is then 204 or 272 hp. Because you have to be able to drive almost 100 km electrically and that is always done with 115 hp, the 204 hp seems to be the variant you should have. The system works smoothly together and with 115 hp of power available from almost a standstill, it is not fast, but it is very smooth. Moreover, the lower BPM makes the plug-in hybrid slightly cheaper.

Volkswagen Passat

The Volkswagen Passat can hold almost 700 liters even with the seat up.

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