2011 Vw Passat and Passat Variant: full details, photos and specs

Article by Christian Andrei, on October 16, 2010

Volkswagen has just released the full details plus a new set of images of the saloon and estate versions of the seventh generation Passat. The next generation Passat, which recently debuted at the Paris Motor Show, will have front-wheel-drive as standard. Meanwhile, the 4MOTION, the all-wheel-drive version, is offered as an option.

The engine choices include three diesels and three petrols, and a 150 PS plant that can run on natural gas (EcoFuel).

The diesel engines range from 105 PS to 140 PS and 170 PS, while the petrols include a 122 PS TSI, 160 PS TSI and a 211 PS TSI. The German carmaker also claims that the 2011 Passat’s fuel economy ranges from 4.2 l/100km (56 mpg) to 9.3 l/100km (25 mpg).

This car will be equipped with a 6-speed manual gearbox fitted as standard. When it comes to safety, the new Passat will have additional features such as Side Assist assistance system, seatbelt fastening detection for the rear seats and head restraints that now also adjust horizontally on the front seats (standard from Comfortline). The risk of whiplash injury is also reduced with the installation of new head restraints for driver and front passenger.

Exterior Design

The new 2011 Volkswagen Passat features a front end similar to that of the new VW Phaeton – new grille marked with four cross members -- a feature that distinguishes the status of higher positioned vehicles. To compare, models beneath the Passat and Phaeton, as well as vans, are marked by a narrow radiator grille with two cross members. To distinguish the positioning of its higher end models, Walter de Silva, Head of Design for the Volkswagen Group and Klaus Bischoff, Head of Design for the Volkswagen Brand, opted to feature a four-crossmember grille.

Thus with this new mark, the Volkswagen Passat now clearly has VW's "design DNA." This new front-end design gives the Passat a more imposing and dynamic appearance. The Passat retains its dimensions as it is still 1,820 mm wide, 4,769 mm (Estate: 4,771 m) long saloon and 1,474 mm (Estate: 1,519 mm) tall. The new distinctive grille is around the same height as its new dual headlights, which could be availed with optional bi-xenon and LED daytime running lights, each of which contains 15 LEDs.

Just below the lines created by the headlights and grille is the bumper section, which comes in the same color as the vehicle's body. Underneath them are air intakes bordered by chrome-plated winglets, which are shaped and designed like the wing tips of commercial aircraft. These winglets house the Passat's low profile fog lights. For those who would avail of the Highline equipment line, they can find another chrome trim strip – located at the center of the air intake -- joining the winglets.

The front spoiler -- located on the lowest level of the front end -- is designed as a splitter. For those who would avail of the Comfortline equipment level and above, they can find a chrome trim strip on the front spoiler. On the other hand, the rear of the new 2012 VW Passat features a rear section with a wedge shape less significant compared to that of the previous model. This does not only make the rear part of the Passat look lighter and more elegant, it also makes this section of the saloon appear lower.

Likewise, the end surfaces of both the saloon and estate versions of the Passat are now wider. Interestingly, the wings are hugged by rear lights, with the main light featuring a significant contour. Passat's rear lights could be specified in any of the two available versions. The higher end version of the rear lights features LED technology for the main light, the brake light and the rear fog light. Starting with the Comfortline equipment level, the rear bumper is bordered by a chrome trim strip. In the estate version, the chrome strip flows across the full width of the Passat. On the saloon variant, the strip is split by the license plate frame.

Since each engine type for the Passat has its own specific exhaust pipe, the lower area of each rear bumper was modified as needed. For instance, the base engines -- 1.4 TSI with 90 kW and 1.6 TDI with 77 kW – feature a single tailpipe on the left side. Meanwhile, the natural gas version – powered by the 1.4 TSI EcoFuel – has no tailpipe visible. On the other hand, higher powered front-wheel drive Passats feature a dual exhaust pipe on the left. All-wheel drive 4MOTION versions feature one tailpipe on the left and another one on the right.

Amazingly, the Passat's front end merges with the side profile through the side contour of its V-shaped bonnet and its unique wing panel lines. The side contour features two character lines – a lower and an upper line – providing structure to the height of the vehicle while giving the vehicle a lower profile. This upper character line connects to the highest point of the headlights through the window line up to the C-pillar. The lower character line, meanwhile, joins the side sections of the headlights and rear lights.

The sill area features a black (Trendline equipment level) or chrome (Comfortline and Highline equipment level) trim strip between the flared wheel housings. The black or chrome trim strip continues on the front and rear sections of the vehicle. Passat's side profile is typified by a fluid sweep from the roof section to the rear. However, side profiles of each equipment lines are set apart because of the differences in wheel-tire combinations.

Topics: vw, vw passat, sedan, estate

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