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Rep Cars – New Volkswagen Passat

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The new Volkswagen Passat has already proved popular in the fleet market, having evolved from the smart and functional ‘B7’ Passat and now features a more upmarket look. The silhouette hasn’t changed much, but little tweaks to the exterior have made a significant difference.¬†

 

The repositioning of Passat’s door handles to sit along (and not under) a body crease add class, while the beautifully broad Passat ‘CC-esque’ grille, with its seamlessly integrated headlights, is a great piece of design. Inside, the grille’s design is echoed along the width of the dashboard. It will be a great dust trap over time, but for now it is simply elegant.¬†

 

The spacious cabin is now roomier and features all the VW switchgear and controls we know so well. Passat’s build quality is very impressive and less badge-conscious Audi drivers will find themselves seriously tempted to the sister brand. VW Passat is clearly a very smart business tool.¬†

 

The interior is vast with seating for five and a boot that is so large you’d almost need to climb into it to reach the back of the seats! The saloon has 586 litres of boot space and the estate 650 litres – and that’s before you put the rear seats down! All the latest driving aids are available and you also get the familiar VW touch screen multifunction display. That said, on more than one or two cold and damp mornings, for a good few kilometres, we found the screen reluctant to function.¬†

 

One particular optional extra that will be exclusive in the new Passat (for a while, anyway) is VW’s Trailer Assist. We are familiar with auto parking functions available on many cars these days. Auto parking still makes passengers believe in witchcraft, but now VW has taken this electronic trickery to a new level.

 

Passat will identify a parking space (parallel or perpendicular) for the car – and its trailer! With the press of a couple of buttons it will park itself and whatever it is towing. This is an awesome bit of automation, although I don’t know many drivers who tow regularly that can’t manually park their trailer. We haven’t tested the system yet, but when it is available we’ll be first in the queue to try it.

 

We tested saloon and estate (plus ‚ā¨2,000 over saloon)¬†versions and spent considerable time in the entry-level, 1.6-litre diesel saloon (120hp) and the 2.0-litre, 190hp DSG-equipped estate. NVH (noise, vibration and harshness) have been reduced in the new ‘B8’ Passat. Passat is a great cruiser and both quiet and composed on the open road.¬†

 

To be very critical, we found the 1.6 diesel to be just adequate: it was reasonably economical for a big car and a little noisy at low revs. The higher-powered 2.0-litre diesel in our ‘Highline’ automatic (DSG) estate managed a frugal 5.1l/100km with some angelic driving.¬†But again, it didn’t make the right noises to encourage us to enjoy the car’s performance potential.

 

Prices are competitive, but not cheap with a starting point of ‚ā¨28,000 on the road for the Trendline 1.4-litre petrol model, while our Highline 190hp DSG estate test car with a few optional extras cost over ‚ā¨48,000.¬†

 

VW Group Ireland has become the dominant force in the Irish market. This is helped in no small way by having its own bank, and the purchase propositions with Passat on PCP finance are very tempting. VW offers an interest rate as low as 1.9% on Highline models.

 

Volkswagen makes 3,000 Passats per day, making it a very important car for the German giant. Passat is also its longest-running model in VW portfolio with a production run that outstrips the Beetle! Various powertrains are on the way, including all-wheel drive and a plug-in hybrid.

 

New Passat is an impressive car.

 

To find out more about the new Volkswagen Passat and other vehicles in this segment, please call us on 01 419 8373 or click here

 

Source: Michael Sheridan, RTE.ie

 

 

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