Making a case for the 2020 VW Passat

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VW announced pricing for the 2020 Passat a few days ago.
Amazingly enough, the new model is cheaper than the 2019 version. (By about $2300!)
As it now starts at $23 000.
Which is also cheaper than the Honda Accord, Mazda 6, Nissan Altima and Toyota Camry.
Of course, as we know, the 2020 Passat is not an all new car. It still uses the old platform (Unlike the new Chinese model)
And it can only be ordered with the 2.0 Liter engine with 174HP and a 6 speed auto.
When most of the competition offers 8 or 10 speed and more powerful engines.
I actually think the design is a pretty nice update. It is almost refreshing to see a new sedan design that doesn’t try to fool us into thinking it is a hatchback.
It is not afraid of its trunk.
The interior is not all new either, but most of the dash and console bits are. Infotainment has been upgraded as well.
(although, because of its older platform, it is not compatible with VW’s cool Digital Cockpit.)
And the loaded SEL version is priced at $32 000. Which is thousands less than similar versions of the Accord or Camry.
I test drove the Passat a few years ago and was actually impressed by how solid, quiet, roomy and comfortable it was. And frankly, the power was enough most of the time.
I think there is still a market in the US for a super roomy and smooth sedan available at a really good price.
Sure, reliability has never been as good as the Japanese brands. But it is now at least average. 
I actually think the 2020 Passat, with its modern but conservative upgrade could be a good thing for VW…

Conversation 13 comments

  1. The ID.4 will sooner or later take the Passat's place. VW still needs a base car or people's car to appease younger buyers or those that were emotional with the Bettle or even base Golf. They can even trash the Jetta and solve the bland factor with the ID.3. Heck, with the Passat soon to be dead, VW can built the ID.3 in Chattanooga TN

  2. VW has one big problem. Reliability. There is only fix for this brand. The Hyundai warranty. But they will not stand behind junk.

  3. This is a good value and nice car. I love my 2014 Jetta and 2015 Tiguan. They have been perfectly reliable. I've had a Toyota, a Datsun, four Hondas, a Kia, and a Nissan. I like them all, and the VWs are wonderful. The conservative but tasteful styling suits my tastes better than other brands and seem classier. Still, my favorite car ever owning was the 1986 Accord LXi. Miss that baby!

    p.s. Your site rocks, Vince.

  4. The price really won't change much. The pre-2020 models always had a $3000 to $4500 cash incentive. I doubt the 2020 model will with the revised pricing structure. Good move by VW to bring pricing in line with demand – saves the consumer $$$ on sales tax charged on incentives.

  5. In 2019, you see a car in the distance with a blown headlight. You think "I'll bet it's a VW". You pass each other. It's a VW. I guess they do it for some kind of tradition. Maybe it's a German thing.

    Mazda's tradition is turning into rust buckets years earlier than other brands.

    It takes real stones by these 2 "Car" companies to perpetuate the same flaws for decades.

  6. I have a 2014 Passat tsi that i bought new and 5 years later it's still driving like a brand new car. I have never visited the dealership for anything except oil changes and i am still on my original brakes! Easily the most reliable car i ever owned and since this model uses the same bones with upgraded styling and tech it's probably going to be extra reliable compared to the competition. I also like the way it drives, very smooth, quiet and refined but i can use some more passing power, the added torque on this model might help. A loaded SEL in tourmaline blue is looking like my next car.

  7. It seems like VW has given up on trying to chase the Japanese and Korean class leaders in technology and style, but I can see a market of disenfranchised Impala and Taurus owners that might be attracted to the large interior, generic styling and lower price point.

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