I bought my first new model Passat last year. It is a 2012 SE. I bought it for my wife for Christmas. It has the gas 2.5L motor. I was drawn to the model initially by the cavernous interior and the sl...
I bought my first new model Passat last year. It is a 2012 SE. I bought it for my wife for Christmas. It has the gas 2.5L motor. I was drawn to the model initially by the cavernous interior and the sleek euro styling. After 32k miles, we have really became fans of this model. It provides plenty of room for our family of 5 (which includes my 15yo Son who is 6ft3in and weighs 270lbs). He rides comfortable in the super spacious back seat with his brother and sister, and both front seats all the way back. The multi function 8 speaker radio is intuitive and sounds better than the Harmon Kardon system that was in my 5-series BMW.
Performance is adequate. The 2.5L motor, coupled with the 6 speed automatic transmission provides enough power for any daily driving need and the occasional passing maneuver. The big suprise for me in this combination was the gas mileage....I don't necessarily drive conservatively and neither does my wife, but we still average between 28 and 32 MPG in this relatively large sedan.
We liked the car so much, that I just bought an new 2013 SE 2.5.
Handling is crisp for a front drive car of this size with pretty good grip from the stock tires. It enters turns well and holds pretty level when pushed a little in the corners.
The 2012 SE model features climate control, which was not available on the 2013 model that I purchased. Not necessarily a deal breaker, but seamingly a step backwards for the SE model. A bit of an offset is the addition of rear vents for the back seat occupants in 2013 SE model. This makes sense, as the large interior of the car is cooled much faster on hot July days as result.
The cons for the car are the road noise and poorly designed wind screen/diffuser on the moonroof.
The road noise, while not horrible...is present certainly on less than smooth road surfaces. Poor placement of the Bluetooth microphone seem to make it pronounced to callers on the other end of the phone. Replacing the stock tires with better quality touring rubber will likely help to reduce the amount of road noise considerably.
If you are planning on purchasing a model with the moonroof option, go ahead and pony up the extra $200 for the fitted wind deflector. The stock pop up wind diffuser utilizes a low cost screen material to eliminate wind buffeting by diffusing it. The result is an intense hissing wind noise that renders the the open moonroof pretty much useless. Adding the deflector rectifies this, but it does interrupt the sleek flowing lines of the car in my opinion.
Overall, if you are seeking a stylish, fuel efficient, and roomy sedan...I recommend checking out the Passat.
It is great at what it is designed to do. Transport up to 5 adults in relative comfort and safety from one point to the other with a flair of euro style while getting compact car fuel mileage.
With the transition in 2014 to the new 1.8L turbo motor, you should be able to find some great deals on the outgoing 2.5L models.