Best Bet
  • (3.9) 33 reviews
  • MSRP: $1,919–$8,059
  • Body Style: Sedan
  • Combined MPG: 22-32
  • Engine: 170-hp, 1.8-liter I-4 (premium)
  • Drivetrain: Front-wheel Drive
  • Transmission: 5-speed automatic w/OD and auto-manual
2005 Volkswagen Passat

Our Take on the Latest Model 2005 Volkswagen Passat

What We Don't Like

  • Engine noise with turbocharged four-cylinder
  • Seat-adjustment controls
  • Diesel-engine performance

Notable Features

  • Choice of three engines
  • Available diesel engine
  • Available 4Motion AWD
  • Sedan and wagon body styles
  • Available stability control

2005 Volkswagen Passat Reviews

Vehicle Overview
Volkswagen's midsize sedan and wagon went on sale as freshened 2001.5 models. A TDI turbo-diesel engine became available during the 2004 model year.

For 2005, Volkswagen has dropped the costly Passat W8 model. Leatherette seating surfaces replace cloth in the GL and GLS models, and the GLS gets heated front seats as standard equipment. The Passat is available with either front- or all-wheel drive. A redesigned Passat is expected for 2006.
(Skip to details on the: Passat Wagon)

Body-colored bumpers have a black lower section, and the sharply raked black grille contains a pronounced center logo. Halogen projector-lens fog lamps are integrated into the front bumper.

Helped by a space-saving hinge, the sedan has 15 cubic feet of trunk capacity; space decreases in sedans with all-wheel drive. Steel wheels on GL models hold 15-inch tires, but the GLS now has standard 16-inch tires and the GLX moves to standard 17-inch alloy wheels.

Up to five occupants fit inside the Passat. Reclining bucket seats are installed up front, and a 60/40-split folding bench seat goes in the back. The gauges have brushed-aluminum accents and the familiar Volkswagen blue lighting at night.

Under the Hood
The Passat can be equipped with either a 170-horsepower, turbocharged 1.8-liter four-cylinder; a 190-hp, 2.8-liter V-6; or a turbo-diesel 2.0-liter four-cylinder that produces 134 hp and 247 pounds-feet of torque. The turbocharged 1.8-liter four-cylinder can be equipped with either a five-speed-manual transmission or a five-speed Tiptronic automatic that permits manually selected gear changes, but all other engines are available only with the automatic.

Six airbags, including two for front-seat side-impact protection and two side curtain-type airbags, are standard. All-disc antilock brakes, daytime running lights and child-safety seat tether anchorage points for rear outboard seating positions are standard.

Driving Impressions
Volkswagen's Passat is one of the smoothest-riding sedans in its league. The suspension is taut, but it absorbs moderate bumps handily with no sense of overreaction.

The exceptionally quiet V-6 delivers more than ample acceleration. Automatic-transmission response is crisp and positive. Volkswagen's turbocharged four-cylinder is coarser during hard acceleration and isn't especially powerful at lower speeds; but otherwise, it's as energetic as many V-6s.

The Passat steers with moderate effort and excellent precision, but at times it's a trifle slow to respond. It displays minimal body lean in curves. Every element of assembly comes across as A-1.

Because Volkswagen has used diesel engines for years in its smaller Jetta, one would expect the Passat diesel to be wholly satisfying; sadly, that's not the case. Performance is acceptable, if tame. You can clearly hear the diesel-engine sound when a window is open. More important, the diesel-engine powertrain in two early Passats stumbled periodically.

Passat Wagon
In wagon form, the Passat differs little from its sedan counterpart. Cargo capacity is 39 cubic feet behind the rear seat and 56.5 cubic feet with that seat folded down. All-wheel-drive wagons have slightly less cargo volume. Back to top

Consumer Reviews


Average based on 33 reviews

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Solid Car

by Brima2 from Goldsboro on November 2, 2017

I purchased this 2005 Passat GLX just before they changed the body style and have owned it through 235k miles. It is a solid car. It still drives smoothly. As with all VW, the only issue I have is ... Read Full Review

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18 Trims Available

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Wondering which configuration is right for you?
Our 2005 Volkswagen Passat trim comparison will help you decide.

Volkswagen Passat Articles

2005 Volkswagen Passat Safety Ratings

Crash-Test Reports


There are currently 4 recalls for this car.

Safety defects and recalls are relatively common. Stay informed and know what to do ahead of time.

Safety defects and recalls explained

Service & Repair

Estimated Service & Repair cost: $4,800 per year.

Save on maintenance costs and do your own repairs.

Warranty Coverage

What you should get in your warranty can be confusing. Make sure you are informed.

Learn More About Warranties

Warranties Explained


Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.


Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

Roadside Assistance

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

Free Scheduled Maintenance

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

Other Years