Volkswagen Passat 1.8 Comfortline Review – The New Transporter

We’re a little disappointed with the fact that we hardly see Volkswagen’s latest (B8) Passat on the roads. Reason being is how it ticks all the right boxes when it comes to comfort, refinement, driving and how it is priced in comparison to the other continental marques. How does it fare? Read on to find out.

 

As the eyes can see, the exterior design is the first thing that draws you in. Volkswagen themselves call the new Passat design as “a combination of stylish clarity with a high degree of power.” They continue on to say that it’s a design that isn’t simply fashionable, but contemporary; not whimsical but expressive, and a design where every line has a purpose. Thanks to the brand’s latest modular transverse matrix (MQB) platform, the proportions include a lower body, longer wheelbase and larger wheels while maintaining that Passat signature.

 

What you’ll instantly notice is the Passat’s new rounder edges compared to its predecessor. The front bold grille is now wider and sweeps into the headlamps, providing a more executive front. Its business side and rear profile when in motion showcases the Passat at its best – with the signature daytime running lights and LED’s at the back. You’ll notice a lot more inspiration from the brand’s subsidiary Audi on the new look.

 

We recommend getting the App Connect for the Comfortline that adds Mirrorlink apps, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto to the unit. At time of publication, users can optionally upgrade their Passat’s with App Connect for a limited time for RM 699 or RM 400 off the regular retail price.

While the interior might feel eerily like the last one, you aren’t wrong. The design has the Volkswagen essence as with the central head unit, air conditioning controls, gear shifter and analog meter combinations. What we liked with the new dashboard is the uninterrupted horizontal vent that elevates the overall cabin appeal. With the Comfortline as tested, the trim features the brand’s named Silver Diamond inserts across the dash and door panels. But should you opt for the Highline, the interior will be decked with the Brilliant Pine Wood inserts and fully digital 12-inch Active Info Display for the driver.

 

Power for the 1.8-litre turbocharged petrol engine on the Trendline and the Comfortline as tested is specified at 178hp with 250Nm of torque at a low 1,250 to 5,000 rpm. All this is mated to the 7-speed dual clutch automatic. What you’re probably thinking is whether the 1.8-litre unit is capable enough? Here’s what happened. When comparing the Passat against a more powerful D-segment sedan with a larger 2.0-litre turbocharged engine and over 60 more horsepower, the differences between each century sprint times, is a mere half-a-second more for the competitor. Here numbers don’t mean anything. It is the application that matters.

 

The driving characteristics is not as sharp as the Highline’s 2.0-litre unit with the Golf GTI engine and Dynamic Chassis Control, with the immediacy of turn in’s and direction change but is still an admirable performer. The sense of confidence that the Passat provides on the road, is one that you can push around hard when needed and remain calm and composed for most of the everyday commute to work. Body roll doesn’t lean in too much but is noticeably present while dampers will soak up the unevenness on our cratered Malaysian motorways.

 

Park Assist is available on the Comfortline and Highline variants that enables semi-automatic parking.

Standard Equipment for the Comfortline includes Cruise Control, the Composition Media 6.5-inch touchscreen display with USB, SD Card, Bluetooth and AUX connectivity, Driver Profile Selection, Paddle Shifters and Park Assist to help you with that parking woes. When it comes to keeping safe, six airbags ESC, ABS, Brake Assist, Intelligent Crash Response System, Isofix and more keeps safety passively in check.

 

Truth be told, we really like the new Passat. The Trendline is a great introduction to the executive sedan, with the Comfortline providing that additional creature comforts you’d really require from a vehicle of this class. But honestly, if the budget is not a concern, we’d recommend the Highline for its driving dynamics and Active Info Driver Display.

 

If you’re in the market for one, the recent introduction of the Passat Plus for the Trendline and Comfortline provides customers with additional upgrades worth RM8,000 and RM12,000 respectively on top of the standard offerings. What’s even better is that with every registration from now until 31st August 2017, VW will knock off RM15,000 on every Trendline, Comfortline and Plus variant. That places the Trendline at RM144,990 and the Comfortline Plus at just RM169,980! What’s more to ask for?

If you’re free on the 11th to 13th August 2017 weekend, just head on to the Volkswagen Fest 2017 to celebrate everything Volkswagen!

 

Looking to sell your previous generation VW Passat? Try our nationwide bidding and get at least 10% higher than trade-in price! FIll in the form below and we’ll contact you within ONE working day!