One-week vehicle loan was provided for review purposes. All opinions are my own.
Fuel Efficiency: 30 city/44 hwy
|Best Suited For: Families
Notable Features: Spacious, good fuel economy, easy to drive/operate
Links: Official site
From the outside, the 2015 Volkswagen Passat TDI is somewhat plain and simple. The design looks very similar to the Volkswagen Jetta, but much bigger. I’m not saying that the car is gigantic. It is actually the perfect size for a mid-size sedan but is just as easy to drive as its smaller counterpart.
Steering is a breeze and is an important part of what makes this car so easy to drive. I did not have any trouble making a U-turn or getting into parking spaces. The suspension can be bit bouncy at higher speeds but is comfortable while driving city streets and responsive on sharp turns.
TDI Clean Diesel
The model we tested was a TDI (turbo diesel injection). The Passat can actually feel a bit sluggish at times, but once the turbo kicks in it becomes a real powerhouse and you’ll be able to easily pass others when needed. Running on diesel means you can go farther on less fuel. After filling up, the tank display showed that the Passat would be able to drive a distance of close to 600 miles. On the freeway I got an average mileage of around 45 mpg.
The diesel engine is a little noisier than a gasoline-powered car. It only becomes more noticeable when the car is stationary or at lower speeds. Due to the so-called double clutch (known as DSG), the six speed automatic gearbox operates exceptionally smooth up to 15% better fuel economy than a regular automatic.
Inside the 2015 Volkswagen Passat
I have always been impressed with Volkswagen’s dashboard layout and this Passat continues that tradition. After a few rides you’ll be able to pretty much find all the controls without even looking at them.
The in-dash screen was kind of small but it was sufficient to show images from the rear camera. The low resolution does affect the image quality of the maps, though, and I believe this should get some attention from Volkswagen.
The main reason you’d probably want to get the Passat is the space inside. I’m close to six feet tall and had more than enough leg space. Someone my size could easily fit behind me and be just as comfortable. This car fits five adults, even on longer trips, without feeling cramped. The seats are easy to adjust and will please almost anyone. I’d like to see more soft touch materials being used. The hard plastic makes the interior feel cheap, something you’d find in a car in a much lower price class but not in a Passat.
The large amount of available room for the driver and passengers does not mean the trunk space had to suffer. Being able to transport five people means you’ll also need that extra space in the trunk and Volkswagen has made sure there’s plenty of that.
2015 Volkswagen Passat TDI Review
Though the 2015 Volkswagen Passat TDI has a very simple design and probably won’t turn any heads, the spacious and comfortable interior and amazing mileage make this car an instant favorite and should definitely be added to any shortlist for larger-sized sedans.