2017 Volkswagen Passat Reviews and Ratings

1.8T SE Auto

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J.D. Power Verified Consumer Reviews (13)
Overall Rating
  4.4 / 5
Reliability
  4.4 / 5
Interior
  4.2 / 5
Exterior
  4.5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
  4.4 / 5

By Mario Friday, July 28, 2017 - 11:03am J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
  5 / 5
Five Stars
Reliability
  5 / 5
Interior
  5 / 5
Exterior
  5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
  5 / 5

By John Friday, August 18, 2017 - 8:48pm J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   4.5 / 5
Exceptional performance and handling, excellent interior features and comfort. Best Features - V6 engine performance, handling on road, electronics/sound system. Worst Features - floor mats
Reliability
   4.5 / 5
Interior
   4 / 5
Exterior
   4.5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   5 / 5

By Amos Friday, July 28, 2017 - 12:21pm J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   4.2 / 5
38 mpg hwy 29 mpg city. Pros: Apple car play. Cons: Road noise
Reliability
   5 / 5
Interior
   2 / 5
Exterior
   5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   5 / 5

By Antonio B. Wednesday, August 2, 2017 - 7:51pm J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   4.4 / 5
If you are a shopper to find a family car PASSAT would be the best sedan you can be with your family for a long time because of its reliable safety and hidden state-of-the-art technology that keep your family away from unexpected danger. PASSAT is another name of family sedan.
Reliability
   5 / 5
Interior
   4 / 5
Exterior
   4.5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   4 / 5

By Jim Saturday, July 29, 2017 - 10:23am J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   4.2 / 5
The 2017 VW Passat R-line is a very solid larger car which is both responsive and economical. The R-line is worth the extra cost and exhibits a sportier look than the typical hauler. The 19"" wheels and front end trim look aggressive. The room for long legs and wide bodies is exceptional. I'm 6'4"" and my son is 6'7"" and both of us fit comfortably in this car. It has a great European road-feel and short turning radius which is nice when parking or turning in a tight situation. The car is smooth and quiet...overall driving experience is high. My other VW is a GTI which is tighter and sprints faster but the Passat has delivered great rides for several trips over 500 miles so far one-way.
Reliability
   4 / 5
Interior
   4.5 / 5
Exterior
   4 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   4.5 / 5

By Kandi Sunday, July 30, 2017 - 12:26pm J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   5 / 5
Volkswagen is a high quality car that consumers don't give enough credit. My car reminds me of an Audi just not the cost. The 2017 Volkswagen Passat RLine is a sweet ride. It handles curves just a like a sports car and is very fun to drive on mountain trips. The headlights are out of this world you can see everything on the road with the upgraded lighting package. If you want an affordable car with room and looks this car is for you. This is my second Passat and I love everything about it! STOP paying a lot of money for bigger names just give Volkswagen a try you will not be disappointed.
Reliability
   5 / 5
Interior
   5 / 5
Exterior
   5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   5 / 5

By Renee Saturday, August 5, 2017 - 11:20am J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   4.5 / 5
I really enjoy driving my VW Passat. This car is great on gas and the power brakes will stop on a dime. I like the rear view dashboard this is an excellent safety feature that all vehicles should have. It alerts you not only if a car is behind you but also if you are backing up to close to the curb.
Reliability
   4.5 / 5
Interior
   4.5 / 5
Exterior
   4.5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   4.5 / 5

By Max Wednesday, September 6, 2017 - 9:42am J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   3.5 / 5
The Volkswagen Passat SEL Premium I purchased is a great car. I enjoy all the amenities that it offers plus the performance is above average for a 4 cylinder turbo. I would highly recommend this car.
Reliability
   3.5 / 5
Interior
   3.5 / 5
Exterior
   3.5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   3.5 / 5

By Anonymous Sunday, August 20, 2017 - 10:43am J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   4.2 / 5
Like the feel of it but road noise is a little loud and audio system speekers could be better. It is good to drive in town
Reliability
   4.5 / 5
Interior
   4 / 5
Exterior
   4 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   4.5 / 5

By Liz Saturday, September 2, 2017 - 11:11am J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   5 / 5
Volkswagen is a reliable, stylish, and quality brand. When we purchased our Passat R-Line I was surprised by the amount of cargo space and rear leg room, and the really fantastic gas mileage we got on a recent road trip! We were getting close to 40 mpg highway. The seats are comfortable and easy to adjust, the included technology has made the car a complete joy to drive.
Reliability
   5 / 5
Interior
   5 / 5
Exterior
   5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   5 / 5

By Tanya Wednesday, September 6, 2017 - 5:28pm J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   2.2 / 5
... But I drove my new car from Alabama to California. Two days after arriving in California the vehicle wouldn't start. It had 500 miles on the odometer. I had to have the vehicle towed to the dealership there. But no one there could figure out why it would not start. They pulled the battery wires to ""hard reset"" it. I had to drive it back to Alabama hoping that it would keep starting. I took it back to the dealership that I purchased it from so they could look it over again. No one there could help either. The vehicle still has electrical problems in the console but I'm dealing with that. I honestly thought I would like the car better, but I don't like some of the computer braking mechanisms, either. It bothers me that it has over-compensated stopping and it's never smooth when shifting gears. As soon as I can, I will be trading for another Jeep.
Reliability
   1 / 5
Interior
   2.5 / 5
Exterior
   4 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   1.5 / 5

By Rachael Saturday, September 2, 2017 - 11:54am J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   5 / 5
With every penny and then some. Truely a luxury vehicle amd great on gas. The ride is smooth and easy.
Reliability
   5 / 5
Interior
   5 / 5
Exterior
   5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   5 / 5

By Ron H. Wednesday, August 23, 2017 - 12:51pm J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   5 / 5
We are very pleased with our car. Our last car has saved my wife's life with the safety features and design. Very realizable safety features, great gas mileage, and very advance technology.
Reliability
   5 / 5
Interior
   5 / 5
Exterior
   5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   5 / 5


Expert Reviews ( 1 )

2017 Volkswagen Passat
New Car Test Drive

Introduction

Despite the fact that the Volkswagen Passat is the best-selling VW in history, greater even than the Beetle, it still ranks third in midsize competition, behind the Toyota Camry and Honda Accord. After a light refresh for 2016, it hasn’t changed in 2017. It’s assembled in the United States.

It’s a conservative and straightforward car, while still being a fine and handsome one. It’s big for a midsize car, nearly 192 inches long with a 110-inch wheelbase. That enables 117.9 cubic feet of interior space, a bit less than Subaru Legacy’s 119.6 cubic feet.

The Passat does very little wrong. It’s powered by a fairly peppy turbocharged 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine making 170 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque, mated to a smooth 6-speed automatic, with front-wheel drive. All-wheel drive isn’t available, nor is a diesel, because of the whole emissions cheating scandal.

The more powerful engine is a V6 making 280 hp and 258 lb-ft, mated to a 6-speed twin-clutch direct-shift gearbox, or DSG.

The 1.8-liter engine gets 23/34/27 miles per gallon City/Highway/Combined, EPA-rated. That’s fairly efficient for a four-cylinder turbo, but far behind hybrids from Chevy and Toyota. And still behind non-hybrids like the Hyundai Sonata (31 Combined), Chevrolet Malibu (30 Combined), and all-wheel-drive Subaru Legacy (29 Combined).

The V6 gets 20/28/23 mpg, which is closer to V6 competitors.

Premium fuel is recommended, but Regular works. You just get a bit less power and fuel mileage. Those EPA numbers always come from Premium fuel when recommended by the manufacturer.

The NHTSA gives the Passat five stars overall in safety, with four stars in front and rollover crash protection. The IIHS gives the Passat its top Good scores in all of its tests, including the small-overlap front crash test. When equipped with optional active safety features such as forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking and blind-spot monitors, the Passat is an IIHS Top Safety Pick. A Poor rating for headlamps keep it from Top Safety Pick +.

A rearview camera system is standard, as is a post-collision braking system that helps lessen the severity of secondary collisions.

Model Lineup

The 2017 Passat 1.8-liter comes in S ($22,440), SE ($25,495), and SEL ($30,995) models. Also available is the V6 and DSG in SE ($29,295) and SEL ($33,995). There’s also a sporty Passat R-Line ($23,975).

Unlike many base models, the S is well equipped with 16-inch alloy wheels, VW’s newest infotainment with a 5.0-inch display, Bluetooth, a USB port, six-speakers sound system, fabric upholstery, split-folding rear seat. Options include LED headlamps, taillights, fog lamps, and running lamps.

The SE adds rear climate control vents, keyless ignition, leather trim, heated washer nozzles and side mirrors, additional leather and leatherette trim, leatherette upholstery, forward collision warning, adaptive cruise control, satellite radio, voice control, and an upgraded MIB II infotainment system with 6.3-inch screen VW Car-Net App-Connect.

SEL adds 18-inch alloy wheels, stainless steel pedals, Fender premium audio, power front seats with memory settings, sport seats, and a rear armrest with a pass-through to the trunk.

Upper trim levels of the Passat can include adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking, blind-spot monitors, and a new parking assistant.

Walkaround

Last year the Passat got some rough edges smoothed out, including a new grille that’s finely drawn, and domed hood. It’s not all swoopy and edgy or wedgy like other midsize cars are trying to be. It’s not boxy, although the roof is more upright. The surfaces are clean and the lines spare. It’s consistent with the new Golf family.

Interior

We like the instrument panel because it’s so simple and clean. Informative and functional, period. Intuitive. Easy to operate. Buttons, switches, and big readable gauges, right where they should be. Wood or metal trims the broad dash.

Big cupholders hide under a flip-up lid next to the handbrake, and a bin ahead of the shift lever is sized to items like hold cell phones and key fobs.

The infotainment system is the latest, called MIB II, with touch controls and proximity sensing. It features telematics, connected via VW Car-Net, and integrated apps for smartphones, including Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and MirrorLink.

The front seats aren’t as plush as those in other more upscale VWs, but they offer excellent adjustability, good thigh bolstering and plenty of rearward travel. There’s god legroom in the rear, and even better headroom and ease of entry, thanks to the upright roof. In fact, there’s more space than many full-size sedans.

In the SE model, the seats are faux leather; it’s supple and smooth vinyl. The SEL gets leather and grippy faux suede inserts.

The trunk is spacious, nearly the largest in the class at 15.9 cubic feet. That beats the Accord by 1 cubic foot, but is still half a cubic foot smaller than the Hyundai Sonata. When you compare it to full size cars, it’s almost 3 cubic feet smaller than the Chevy Impala. You can open it by waving your foot under the bumper.

The rear seat drops from the trunk, using levers on the back of the seat. All cars should be so smart.

Visibility is excellent. With lots of glass, folding rear headrests, and slim roof pillars, there’s a broad and open view of the world around the car. A good plus for safety.

Driving Impressions

With the 170-hp four-cylinder turbo, power comes on early and stays there for most of the rev range. The engine feels quicker than it is, about 8.0 seconds to get from zero to sixty, and it isn’t ever taxed during daily driving. The 6-speed automatic shifts smoothly.

Even with 110 more horsepower on paper, and a strong 258 pound-feet of torque, the V6 (called VR6) doesn’t always feel that much faster than the turbo four. It’s strong and confident, but its acceleration of 6.5 seconds from zero to sixty might not be worth the lower fuel mileage by four miles per gallon, plus the need for Premium fuel.

The V6 is mated to a dual-clutch 6-speed automatic manual transmission, with different gearing than the regular 6-speed automatic in the four cylinder.

The Passat is extremely pleasant to drive, with steering that’s light, accurate and nicely weighted, some of the best steering in the midsize class. The suspension is relatively taut for good control, yet the ride is comfortable.

It’s generally very quiet inside.

Summary

The Passat is a strong value, especially with the base four-cylinder engine. Great powertrains, super clean and functional instrumentation. The only thing it might lack is excitement, but it doesn’t lack class and for sure it doesn’t lack excellent engineering. If you get excited by everything working, you’ll be happy.

Sam Moses contributed to this report.


J.D. Power Rating
Overall Quality 3 / 5
Overall Quality - Mechanical
3 / 5
Powertrain Quality - Mechanical
4 / 5
Body & Interior Quality - Mechanical
3 / 5
Features & Accessories Quality - Mechanical
3 / 5
Overall Quality - Design
3 / 5
Powertrain Quality - Design
2 / 5
Body & Interior Quality - Design
5 / 5
Features & Accessories Quality - Design
4 / 5

Overall Dependability Not Available
Powertrain Dependability
Not Available
Body & Interior Dependability
Not Available
Feature & Accessory Dependability
Not Available

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J.D. Power Rating Legend
Among the Best
5 / 5
Better than Most
4 / 5
About Average
3 / 5
The Rest
2 / 5

* The J.D. Power Ratings are calculated based on the range between the car manufacturer or car model with the highest score and the car manufacturer or car model with the lowest score. J.D. Power generates a rating of a five, four, three, or two. If there is insufficient data to calculate a rating, “Not Available” is used in its place.

J.D. Power Ratings may not include all information used to determine J.D. Power awards, visit the Car Ratings page to learn more about awards and ratings.