The Arteon, shown in the gallery above testing in southern Europe, is the first all-new model to come from the VW brand since the emissions scandal which engulfed the company last year and which lead to the group's restructuring over the last 12 months. It will sit above the current Passat saloon in Volkswagen's line-up.
Volkswagen has confirmed to Autocar that the Arteon is based on a stretched version of its MQB platform, making it 50mm longer than the CC four-door coupé, production of which ended earlier this month. The CC was typically one of the German manufacturer's lower-selling models, with just short of 4000 examples being sold here in 2015. However, VW is hoping its more practical Arteon will be more popular across Europe.
It will have a boot that can take up to 1700 litres of luggage when the rear seats are folded down, and more legroom for second-row passengers than the CC.
Engines and gearboxes
Pitched as a rival for the BMW 4 Series Gran Coupé, the Arteon will get a familiar range of turbocharged four-cylinder petrol and diesel engines. The most potent petrol unit will produce 276bhp, suggesting it's the same unit as used in the Skoda Superb 280 and Seat Leon Cupra 280.
The Arteon will be the first model to get an all-new seven-speed DSG gearbox, and it will be available with either front or four-wheel drive, with the latter set-up likely be standard on the 276bhp model.
The Arteon's design appears to be at least partly inspired by the Sport Coupé GTE concept car that made its debut in Geneva last year. That car was a hybrid, with a 3.0-litre V6 petrol engine and an electric motor. That powertrain won't be available on the Arteon at launch, but VW hasn't ruled out introducing a hybrid option later on. The electric part could be offered with one of the Arteon's four-cylinder units in the future, or the Passat GTE's hybrid system could be carried across.
Inside, the latest Active Info Display infotainment technology - VW's version of Audi's Virtual Cockpit - will be included, along with the latest driver assistance technology. Volkswagen has kept quiet on details, but Autocar understands the model will be a showcase for technology in the VW range, and will introduce more advanced automatic throttle and braking systems, along with lane keeping assist and other semi-autonomous driving technology.