The 76.3mpg Volkswagen Passat Bluemotion is officially on sale in the UK, with prices starting at £23,200
15 June 2015

The new Volkswagen Passat Bluemotion saloon and estate have both gone on sale in the UK, with pricing starting at £23,200.

Both versions boast an official fuel economy of 76.3mpg in official testing while emitting 95g/km of CO2. Both are powered by a modified version of the 118bhp 1.6-litre diesel engine from the Passat range, which is connected to a six-speed manual gearbox.

The modifications to the engine have resulted in a boost to the Passat’s performance, with the top speed marginally quicker than the standard version at 130mph for the saloon. The 0-62mph times remain the same, though at 10.8sec and 11.0sec for the saloon and estate respectively.

Bluemotion models are based on the entry-level S specification and get 17in alloy wheels, a radiator grille designed to improve the cars’ aerodynamics and a radiator shutter, all of which boost fuel efficiency.

They also come with VW’s 6.5in infotainment system, Bluemotion specific front and rear bumpers, chrome grille details, and Bluemotion badging.

Cars are available to order now, with first deliveries set to take place from August.

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12

19 May 2015
Or around 40mpg when tested by Autocar (that's if the magazine can be bothered to report its findings). I'm sure that this Passat's economy is respectable, but the step change progress indicated by the official figures is no more than a myth. True the industry has been good at eeking out small percentage gains in efficiency here and there, but the net result is that these have only been enough to offset weight and size increases in the car population. Roll on the new testing regime, but so long as tests are carried out by the industry there will always be rule bending.

19 May 2015
What is the official test? What's involved? Can someone PLEASE explain how they go about obtaining these figures?

19 May 2015
scotty5 wrote:

What is the official test? What's involved? Can someone PLEASE explain how they go about obtaining these figures?

The VCA website has a basic description of the test as well as references on where to find the full details:
dft.gov.uk/vca/fcb/the-fuel-consumption-testing-scheme.asp

It's also worth emphasizing something that page only mentions in passing. This test is used for the CO2 emissions too. For something like this passat where company car sales are a big part of it's market and company car costs are heavily impacted by CO2 there's a double incentive to push the test as far as possible.

I've noticed recently that some manufacturers are trying to limit the damage to just configurations where CO2 is likely to be a big factor in costs, so the 150 horsepower diesel mostly bought on schemes will claim a wildly exaggerated 70 or 80mpg while the 150 horsepower petrol mostly bought privately will have a bang on 35mpg, maybe tweaked a little big to get out of a particularly nasty tax class.

Of course, this makes a mockery of any claims that this test is for comparing fuel consumption. It's a joke and it's past time something was done about it. Clearly the government doesn't think it's worth putting up a fight over given the upcoming EU renegotiation but it's becoming well known enough now that it might be worth manufacturer posting real world emissions and economy figures alongside the broken ones.

It's worth praising the smaller manufacturers who have stayed honest. They did have less financial incentive to cheat the system, but I'm sure all the unwarranted comments about their supposed high running costs have done plenty of damage.

20 May 2015
I particularly like the part where it says manufacturers are responsible for their own figures. And that the test is done on a rolling road? Am I correct then in saying that all things being equal, a car with a drag co-efficient of 0.25 would return the same results as a car with a drag co-efficient of .45? If I had the money to burn / waste (no doubt I'd loose), I'd love to take a manufacturer to court under trades description. How these companies are allowed to make such wild claims is beyond me. The test claims it's for comparison purposes only but that clearly doesn't work.

15 June 2015
scotty5 wrote:

I particularly like the part where it says manufacturers are responsible for their own figures. And that the test is done on a rolling road? Am I correct then in saying that all things being equal, a car with a drag co-efficient of 0.25 would return the same results as a car with a drag co-efficient of .45? If I had the money to burn / waste (no doubt I'd loose), I'd love to take a manufacturer to court under trades description. How these companies are allowed to make such wild claims is beyond me. The test claims it's for comparison purposes only but that clearly doesn't work.

Nope - you're wrong:-)

The test is done on a rolling road but first of all the manufacturer has to take a vehicle to special test ground and then coast it to see how the vehicle slows by itself. The time is measured and then on the dyno they approximate the road-load to match the coastdown times. Obviously the car has to be a production representative vehicle but it is "run-in".

Of course - this is open to interpretation and the road-loads on the dyno are allowed to be 5% lighter than what is measured (that's in the rule book). Also, all 12v batteries and the such like are fully charged at the start of the test and depleted over the cycle so there is no alternator running, nor is there any A/C or radio or lights etc. switched on (again, all in the rule book).

Plus, once you've done all that, the manufacturers are allowed to take 4% off the CO2 number that they have measured (again, in the rule book).

Now, all of this is supposed to be so that you can take in to account vehicle-to-vehicle variability but it is used to make the numbers as good as possible.

& you can't take them to court because everything they are doing is legal and written in to the rules...

19 May 2015
"Frugal Volkswagen Passat Bluemotion averages 76.3mpg" - no it doesn't, and never will on the road.
I am surprised and disappointed that Autocar perpetuates the myth that the 'official test' bears any resemblance to real-world mpg.
Anyway, what's it's 0-60 time?

19 May 2015
Journalists report as they find, except that headlines are meant to grab attention, which this one has. If it had been instead: "Frugal Volkswagen Passat Bluemotion averages 76.3mpg in strict laboratory tests", would anyone bother reading the article, I wonder? Whatcar (who I believe share journalists and an office with Autocar) does publish Real mpg figures, using on the road tests, so take about 25% off that headline and that may give nearer what Mr Average might get in a general mix of motoring. Mr Average will still benefit from Zero road tax, whatever the actual mpg they happen to achieve, so will still be happy.

20 May 2015
So what you are saying is motoring magazines are a waste of time? Any fool can regurgitate manufacturers figures, moreover pointless figures. Surely if anyone is going to tell the 'boring truth' it's a respected motoring publication? Isn't that why we read them? If only it were true you could take about 25% off official figures. Over 3 years, my Mk5 Golf was very close to the figures quoted, as was my Mk6. VW then introduced stop/start and other fuel saving technologies, bumped up the official mpg figure and in reality the Mk7 does little more than my old MK5 !!! Same story with the Focus. It all begs the question what is the point of a motoring magazine testing and reporting on such cars? Perhaps someone from Autocar can comment?

20 May 2015
I agree it will probably be 5o mpg at best my wife had a Golf suppose dto get 68mpg gets about 42mpg if driven reasonably gently ,otherwise you would get 35mpg.Noticed a report stating that within 5 years the system will have to change and is currently being resisted mainly by The German car manufacturers.They reckon that car son average achieve only 635 of the mpg claimed.

20 May 2015
sorry meant 63.5%

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