Volkswagen Passat Performance Concept at the 2013 Detroit Auto Show

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  • Looks like: A normal Passat with — really, just a normal Passat
  • Defining characteristics: 250-hp, turbocharged 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine, 19-inch wheels, lowered suspension
  • Ridiculous features: Nothing at all
  • Chance of being mass-produced: Possible considering the Passat’s popularity

The 2013 Volkswagen Passat is near and dear to us as comfy and spacious and even ultra-efficient in TDI diesel models. Fun to drive doesn’t exactly describe the current Passat, but it looks like Volkswagen is aiming to add a little high-performance flair to the midsize sedan with a Passat Performance Concept at the 2013 North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

More 2013 Detroit Auto Show Coverage

Under the hood is a new 250-horsepower, turbocharged 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine that’s not currently available in any U.S.-specific Passats. Volkswagen says the engine is already available — and popular — in the European and Asian markets. The concept’s engine pairs with a six-speed automatic transmission. Even though the current 3.6-liter V-6 makes more horsepower, a turbocharged engine often adds a fun-to-drive factor despite its less power.

Channeling the turbocharged power to the ground is a lowered sport suspension to enhance handling. The Passat Performance Concept also features a dual exhaust system, 19-inch alloy wheels, bi-xenon high-intensity-discharge headlights with adaptive lighting and carbon-fiber-like highlights on the dashboard, side mirrors and seating surfaces.

2114114592 1425510403153 jpeg Photo of Joe Bruzek
Managing Editor Joe Bruzek’s 22 years of automotive experience doesn’t count the lifelong obsession that started as a kid admiring his dad’s 1964 Chevrolet Corvette — and continues to this day. Joe’s been an automotive journalist with for 16 years, writing shopper-focused car reviews, news and research content. As Managing Editor, one of his favorite areas of focus is helping shoppers understand electric cars and how to determine whether going electric is right for them. In his free time, Joe maintains a love-hate relationship with his 1998 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am that he wishes would fix itself. LinkedIn: Email Joe Bruzek

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