Current Model
The changes to the 2020 Passat amount to more of a mild update than a total redesign, but they help the midsized sedan keep pace with the competition in terms of infotainment and a full complement of standard advanced safety features. The Passat also retains its generous interior space and responsive handling.
The ride is on the firm side but absorbs bumps decently. The 2.0-liter, turbocharged four-cylinder engine and six-speed automatic transmission deliver power effortlessly, but initial acceleration from a stop feels a bit abrupt and fuel economy trails the competition. The front seats are comfortable and rear-seat occupants benefit from limousine-like spaciousness. The trunk is large. Controls are very easy to use, and so is the infotainment system.
Road Test
Predicted Reliability
Predicted Owner Satisfaction
2012-2019
2012 Redesign Year
Optimized for the American market, the 2012 redesign brought lots of room front and rear, but it was a step backward in terms of fit and finish. It also lost some of its crisp European driving feel, though it became less expensive.
We'd look for this generation of the Passat with at least a power driver's seat, the touchscreen infotainment system, and a backup camera. The top-line SEL V6 offers plenty of power and plusher accommodations than lower-trim Passats. Keep in mind though, VW's cheating on EPA emissions tests. Be sure any used diesel you consider received the fixes and passes smog before buying it.
$19,100 - $22,375
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$16,475 - $23,350
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$14,600 - $19,650
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$13,200 - $18,600
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$10,050 - $13,900
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$7,975 - $11,250
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$7,600 - $10,350
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$6,675 - $9,675
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
2006-2010
2006 Redesign Year
The Passat has long been known for a quiet and comfortable ride, capable handling and a quality interior treatment. A mid-2001 freshening improved it even more.
For 2006, the Passat was completely redesigned and grew larger. The 2.0-liter turbo four-cylinder got 24 mpg while the quicker, stronger 3.6-liter V6 got 22 mpg in our tests. However, the ride wasn't as isolated as it was previously. Fit and finish remained excellent; while crash test results are similarly outstanding. This version of the Passat ranks near the top of the family sedan category. The V6 and AWD were dropped in 2009. There was no 2011 model.
$6,025 - $6,300
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$5,450 - $5,725
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$4,675 - $6,875
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$4,100 - $6,350
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$3,925 - $5,075
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
1998-2005
The Passat long had a comfortable, quiet ride, capable handling, and an interior that exuded quality. A mid-2001 freshening improved it.
The turbo four-cylinder delivers lively performance and the V6 is quiet and strong. AWD is available but makes the car slower and thirstier. The turbodiesel that debuted in 2004 averaged 28 mpg in our tests. Fit and finish remained excellent.
$2,825 - $4,300
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$2,800 - $4,350
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$2,800 - $4,300
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$2,875 - $4,100
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$2,825 - $3,125
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$2,550 - $2,800
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
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