Volkswagen Passat, a sensible family car choice among Europeans, has returned to India in its eighth generation. In its comeback version, apart from its new look there are changes aplenty. If it was a big car with a matching performance earlier, it is now nimbler in both the departments. Despite retaining those classic straight lines, it oozes sportiness and promises great performance.
Eighth Gen: The latest Passat comes to India three years after its launch in several other markets. It is based on the MQB platform that underpins vehicles like Skoda Superb, Kodiaq, Audi A3, Audi TT and others. It was unveiled at the 2014 Paris Motor Show and hit the roads across the world, including the US and Europe, the same year.
Competition: If you go by the price, then there could be tough competition for Passat. In a segment where not even 1,000 cars are sold a month, Passat will have to take on the likes of Toyota Camry, Honda Accord and Skoda Superb. But Passat definitely has the advantage in terms of its classic looks, luxurious interiors and other features.
Classy: Passat personifies beauty and grace. The main attraction in the front is the headlight and grille that looks like a single panel. LED headlights and day-time running lights are present. The roofline and shoulder line that resemble coupes give it a true luxury car feel. Tail lamps too are in LED.
Convenience: With car keys in the pocket, simply wave your foot below the bumper and the boot will open. This feature is usually seen in cars like BMW 7 Series and others. It also features hands-free parking; reach the parking lot, switch on the indicator and push the park assist button, the vehicle will park on its own. It will park to the side where the indicator is on. The 360-degree camera covers all four sides decently.
Luxury: The interior colour scheme is dark, interspersed with wood panels and silver inserts. The dashboard has a single panel, and houses AC vents with an analog clock in the middle. Dual AC helps the driver and front seat passenger to adjust the air flow. The steering wheel is similar to Polo, while door handles, and window switches have been lifted from Jetta and Tiguan. It also features a panoramic sunroof.
Other features: The front seats get power adjust, while the driver’s seat has a memory and massage function. The back seats are big a supportive. The Passat is also equipped with a three-zone climate control system. The touchscreen infotainment system also offers Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity. The same screen shows the 360-degree camera visuals. It also boasts of nine air bags, electronic stability control, hill start assist and a tyre pressure monitoring system.
The drive: The 2.0-litre TDI diesel puts out 177 bhp and 350Nm of torque. It is mated to a seven-speed DSG automatic gearbox. Power delivery though linear is strong. It can be driven in the manual mode too, with the help of paddles mounted behind the steering wheel. The new Passat is definitely a driver's car. It offers a fuel efficiency of 17.42 kmpl. Ex-showroom price starts from Rs 29.99 lakh.
Test drive: EVM Volkswagen 9895764023