Your Guide to 2018 Volkswagen Passat GT

At Volkswagen’s North American Engineering Planning Center in the heart of Tennessee, an exciting idea has transitioned into an awesome sport sedan. The 2018 Volkswagen Passat GT was born in America, and shares many similarities with the epic cars of the late 1990s; plenty of space, sport aesthetics and a mean engine under the hood.

Volkswagen Group of America vice president – Michael Lovati – stated, “It’s a fully home-grown project. The result is a pretty aggressive car, where you see the sporty genes of Volkswagen coming through.” We’d have to agree with him… the 2018 Passat GT is a serious bit of vehicle. Not only does it remind you of all the good aspects of old American family cars, but it showcases and represents the future of them.

At first glimpse, you’d think it’s just a basic sedan. That’s because the styling is very subtle, but there are a variety of edgy elements that allow it to achieve that sport status. On the front, there are standard LED lights which are complemented by a honeycombed-patterned grille with a red accent line running alongside it.

The 19-inch tornado wheels are a great addition, and again, the brake callipers are coated in a vibrant red paint. Apparently, the red is supposed to effortlessly contrast the four sharp colourways, which are Pure White, Reflex Silver, Platinum Grey and Deep Black. In addition, you have a black roof and there’s a smooth trunk spoiler on the rear.

Moreover, the Passat GT truly is a throwback in terms of what’s under the hood. The 3.6-liter V6 engine allows you to feel the traditional, menacing growls of a six-cylinder, which is rare with all of the four-cylinders emerging these days. With 280-BHP and 258 pound-feet of torque, it certainly can move, and the pull kicks in at just 2,500-RPM.

The power is pushed through its six-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox, which we must admit, can sometimes sway towards the sluggish side when out of Sport mode. But, when in Sport mode, the ride hits another level. The shifts become immediate and seamless, and the throttle becomes even more responsive.

Suspension is rather soft, but on the whole the ride comfort is wonderful. Now, we appreciate that for a family car, the fuel economy is an incredibly important factor. But, with 19-MPG in the city, 28-MPG on the highway and 22-MPG combined, you won’t be able to say you have a car with class-leading figures unfortunately.

As you’d expect, there’s an abundance of space running through the interior, with 39.1 inches of leg room to put that into perspective. Plus, there’s adequate cargo space with 15.9 cubic-feet. But, it seems as though Volkswagen neglected the material quality a bit on this one, with an overuse of plastic and badly design trims. Even the leatherette seats aren’t superb, but they do have an appealing two-tone design, and the front two are bolstered for that sporty look.

On the center console you’ll find a 6.3 inch touchscreen which includes a useful infotainment system, which you’ll be pleased to hear does come with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. However, sadly, the Passat GT does miss out on some great futuristic kit, such as a 400-watt Fender audio system and Volkswagen Digital Cockpit.

For a reliable, sport sedan with a V6 engine, the Passat GT is very competitively priced. Coming in at $29,995, it’s definitely cheaper than some of its rivals. If you’re looking for a family car that you’d just love driving every single day, you can’t go far wrong with the 2018 Volkswagen Passat GT.