VW Passat – SA’s finest family sedan

If you travel long distances and are looking for a comfortable, well-specced and fuel efficient vehicle, look no further than the VW Passat.

Cars in general are increasingly more fuel efficient but VW put everything else on the road to shame recently when the Passat was driven an amazing 2,029kms – on a single tank of fuel!

The model in question was a new Passat 1.4 TSI DSG and it drove from the South African and Zimbabwean border gate in Beit Bridge to Moorreesburg (about 90kms north of Cape Town) in two and a half days using just one tank of petrol.

The average fuel consumption was 4.1 litres per 100kms and the total amount of fuel used was 83.19 litres. The average speed driven was 69 km/h and six drivers were used, each driving for two hours at a time. The previous record of 1,941kms on a single tank was set by a Golf TDI Bluemotion in 2011.

22 million sales worldwide

The current version of the Passat was launched in South Africa last year. This is the eighth generation of the Passat, which since its launch in 1973 has racked up over 22 million sales worldwide. No surprise then that Car magazine described it as ‘the finest family sedan in the market’ after they test drove the 1,8 TSI DSG Highline earlier this year.

Everything in this car is new: design, technologies and engines. Overall weight was reduced by up to 85 kg and fuel economy figures have been improved by up to 14%.

At 4,767mm long, the latest Passat is two millimetres shorter than the previous model, while the wheelbase is 79mm longer at 2,791mm. It is also 14mm lower and 12mm wider.

Despite exterior dimensions that are actually marginally smaller than those of the previous Passat, interior space is improved, with more leg and head room, as well as increased luggage space.

Petrol engines available include the 110kW 1.4 TSI  (which accomplished the above fuel economy record), a 132kW 1.8 TSI and the flagship 162kW 2.0 TSI. The 1.4 TSI is available with 6 speed transmission as standard and an optional 7 speed DSG. The 1.8 TSI is offered with 7 speed DSG transmission as standard and the 2.0 TSI is mated to a 6 speed DSG transmission. There is also a 2.0 TDI 130kW engine that is due out this year if you prefer diesel.

Two trim options

As with all VWs, two trim levels are offered: the Comfortline and Highline. All derivatives offer a high level of standard features with highlights including Multi-Collision Braking System, Fatigue Detection (Driver Alert), Park Distance Control (front and rear), LED taillights, Alcantara/Vienna leather seats (Highline and R-Line), multifunction leather steering wheel with gearshift paddles for DSG derivatives and three-zone Climatronic aircon (optional in Comfortline).

New technologies
The interior has been developed to match the sophisticated exterior of the eighth generation Passat. New technologies to be offered on the new Passat include the optional Active Info Display (available with the 8.0-inch Discover Pro Satellite Navigation system) which replaces the instrument cluster with a fully configurable interactive 12.3 inch TFT display and a head-up display as well as the Composition Media Infotainment and the latest generation Park Assist.

This newly developed Park Assist includes an option for the car to park itself forwards into perpendicular spaces. This comes in handy in supermarket car parks, for example, where access to the boot is important.

Retail Prices (VAT and emissions tax incl.)
VW Passat 1.4 TSI 110kW Comfortline DSG  - R432,600
VW Passat 1.8 TSI 132kW Highline DSG  - R457,500
VW Passat TSI 2.0 R-Line 162kW DSG  - R518,600

The new Passat comes standard with a 3 year/ 120 000 km warranty and a 5 year/100 000 km Service Plan.  All models have a 12 year anti-corrosion warranty.

To test drive it, find your nearest Bidvest McCarthy VW dealer HERE:


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