Volkswagen Passat - Driven
Sometimes, a car needs a full redesign to address a fundamental flaw. Perhaps it’s too small, or too big. Maybe its styling is stale or unappealing. Or perhaps its platform can’t support modern needs.
The 2020 Passat has revised interior and exterior styling, more standard features, and an updated engine. That’s a cheaper set of changes than a full redesign, and Volkswagen is passing those savings on to the customer. Is that enough to excuse the Passat’s old bones? Or are you better off opting for a fresher competitor? Here’s what we learned from our time behind the wheel.
Watch a 2019 Volkswagen Passat Fail Miserably During Chinese Crash Testing
If you’re from China and you’re in the market for a new four-door sedan, you might want to steer clear of the Volkswagen Passat. The German sedan of Chinese roots was recently subjected to a safety test by China’s C-IASI (that’s the country’s equivalent of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety), and to the surprise of many, the Passat recorded one of the worst performances of any car in the crash test.
A video of the C-IASI’s crashworthiness assessment shows the Passat undergoing several crash tests that end in a similar fashion: the sedan gets beaten up pretty badly. The Chinese Passat’s poor performance in the crash tests has bought into question the quality of the model relative to Passat models that aren’t built in China, including Passat models that have received good safety ratings in American crash tests. Is this a case of one Passat being much safer than the other?
This Volkswagen Arteon Shooting Brake Is The Definition of Gorgeous
The U.S. market is bereft of wagons. In the last few years, most automakers pulled their wagons due to the falling demand. There aren’t a lot of options right now and even though there seems to be a positive response to wagons lately, automakers are still hesitant about getting them back. The latest example of this is the Volkswagen Arteon. The company recently refreshed the model and introduced a Shooting Brake version, but it won’t be reaching the U.S. shores.
To give you an idea of how of what we’re missing, here is a couple of renderings from X-Tomi Design that show how hot a two-door Arteon Shooting Brake would look.
2021 Volkswagen Arteon
At a time when the whole world is moving from sedans to crossovers and SUVs – much to the dismay of the car lovers – the Volkswagen Arteon comes as a knight in shining armor. The Arteon was launched as a successor of the Volkswagen Passat CC just three years back, and now VW has given it a mid-cycle refresh with a few tweaks on the outside and many changes on the inside. The German automaker is unearthing the R-Line variant, adding a plug-in trim, and also introducing a shooting brake body style.
A New Leak Exposes the Volkswagen ID.4 and Its Various Wheel Options
Thanks to China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, we now know what the production-version Volkswagen ID.4 will look like. The crystal-clear images of the ID.4 were leaked by the department and show the exterior of the EV from all the angles.
The images were picked up by VWIDTalk.com and also show the different wheel designs on offer. The all-electric SUV is due for launch later this year, but this is a nice surprise. Will this lead to Volkswagen launching the ID.4 any sooner?
A Volkswagen Arteon Shooting Brake? Europe Has All the Awesome Cars
Volkswagen is looking to freshen up the Arteon - which it calls a Gran Turismo now - and with it, we’ll be getting the so-called Arteon Shooting Brake.
What’s more, in the carmaker’s own words, the incoming Arteon update is "major", so let’s see what that could mean, because there’s not much given away in the press blurb.
2021 Volkswagen Arteon R
The Volkswagen Arteon came to our attention back in 2017, during its unveil at the Geneva Motor Show. Three years into the fastback-shaped sedan’s career, Volkswagen is planning to give the Arteon a well-deserved nip and tuck which would keep customer interest fresh and address the areas that needed further improvements.
With the refreshed Arteon, however, we’re expecting Volkswagen to introduce a spicier, more performance oriented version under its notorious R badge. Our suspicions are backed up by a recent set of spy shots that show a virtually undisguised test mule that wears a lot of R-specific features. Allow us to detail, then.
Update 4/29/2020: The Volkswagen Arteon R was spotted once again, this time sporting a look that represents the upcoming facelift and what we can expect from the new Arteon R. Check it out in our special Spy Shots section below!
2020 Volkswagen Touareg R
The 2020 Volkswagen Touareg R is a high-performance version of the familiar midsize SUV. Unveiled in February 2020, ahead of the Geneva Motor Show, the 2020 Touareg R is the first of its kind to boast an "R" badge. It’s also the first R model with a plug-in hybrid drivetrain and the first range-topping variant of any Volkswagen nameplate to feature electrification.
The 2020 Touareg R also makes the Touareg the third VW nameplate to offer a hybrid model after the Golf and the Passat. Because Volkswagen no longer offers the Touareg in the United States, where it has been replaced by the Atlas, the Touareg R won’t cross the pond to North America. Let’s find out more about this SUV in the review below.
Volkswagen Has a Battery Secret That Has Sports Car Written All Over It
If the recent rumors hold any truth, the audacious VW ID.R all-electric racer did serve a higher purpose than it was initially thought. It will lend a hand in developing the next-generation all-electric sports cars that VW plans to deliver by 2025.
Mind you, the said sports cars will only inherit a fraction of the ID.R’s mad performance potential - most likely in the form of e-motor technology and perhaps battery know-how, but that should make them less capable on the road.
Volkswagen Won’t Build the Atlas-Based Tanoak Pickup Because It Knows It Can’t Compete With the Americans
Volkswagen showed up to the 2019 New York Auto Show with the Tanoak Pickup concept. Based on the Volkswagen Atlas, the Tanoak concept was fairly well received. So well, in fact, that Volkswagen was even considering bringing it to market. Things were looking so well for the Tanoak, that we even made a rendering of it based on the Atlas at the time. Despite the well reception, though, there was a major question that had to be addressed: Does the market really need another midsized, unibody pickup truck? Can a company that’s hardly touched the pickup segment globally really step in the ring and throw down with brands like Ford, Chevy, or Toyota? As it turns out, the answer is no. Volkswagen knows it, and that’s why the Tanoak will never move beyond the concept stage. Well, at least not in its current form….
2021 Volkswagen SMV
The 2021 Volkswagen SMV is a brand-new SUV that the German firm will unleash on the Chinese market sometime in 2020. Based on a concept vehicle unveiled at the 2019 Shanghai Auto Show, the SMV is slightly bigger than the Atlas, currently the company’s longest SUV.
Specifically, at 201 inches long the SMV is almost three inches longer than the Atlas, sold as the Teramont in China. The production model doesn’t have an official name yet, but it was spotted testing in cold weather in Sweden. But don’t get your hopes up, although Volkswagen is testing it in Europe, the SMV will be a China-only vehicle. Let’s find out more about it in the speculative review below.
2019 Volkswagen Atlas Adventure Concept
Volkswagen will be in attendance at the 2019 SEMA Auto Show, and it’s bringing with it a host of tricked-out SUVs that are built for the American outdoors. Arguably the coolest of these concepts is the Atlas Adventure Concept. It looks the part of an SUV that can handle itself in the Nevada desert with the kind of ease you won’t see from a lot of SUVs offered at SEMA. It comes with a menu of unique equipment, including a clever housing accommodation setup that should make it comfortable for you and yours to enjoy a good night’s sleep under the stars. The Volkswagen Atlas Adventure Concept is one of three Atlas concepts that will be on display at Volkswagen’s booth in the world’s biggest aftermarket auto show.
The Volkswagen ID.3 Isn’t Coming to the States, But This ID.4 Is!
Ironically, the Dieselgate mishap is what triggered a downright electric revolution within the Volkswagen Group. Just take a step back and observe just how big of a fuss (the be translated into effort of all sorts - investments, marketing, and logistics) the giant is making about its electrified future. Porsche has its first-ever electric sports car, Audi is coming in hot with e-tron badged EVs, and of course, Volkswagen has just unveiled the ID.3, a third-coming model that the company hopes to enjoy just as much popularity as the Beetle and the Golf.
We’ll see about that in the years to come, but the ID.3 won’t be alone for long. Volkswagen will also pull the ID.4 out of its magic ha,t and U.S. residents will want to hear that: it is coming Stateside.
If Volkswagen Brings the Tarok to The United States, It’ll Carry a Price Tag in the Mid-$20,000 Range
Volkswagen brought the Tarok pickup truck concept to the 2019 New York Auto Show before its production debut in South America saying that it has no plans to sell it in the U.S. However, Volkswagen of America CEO Scott Keogh says that the Tarok would make sense in North America with "an extremely smart price point."