From £19,620
Good value Sport brings some appealing extras. A keener drive, but hardly exciting and ride can be fidgety.

Our Verdict

Volkswagen Passat 2011-2014

The VW Passat is a competent family car - but does it show any flair, and does it stand out amongst established executive saloons from BMW, Audi and Mercedes?

29 July 2005

What’s new?The Passat SE got three stars in our road test, now we drive the Sport version on UK roads. For an extra £1405 Sport trim brings sports suspension, sports seats, privacy glass, 17in alloys, front fogs, climate control and automatic mirror, wipers and lights.Do the changes work?Sport badges on German saloons often strike fear in our hearts, but not in this case. For a start there’s no badge, but the 15mm lower ride height, bigger rims and tinted glass sharpen-up the Passat’s slightly dumpy looks. Low-profile tyres and stiffer springs do make for a harder ride, but the suspension tweaks manage to boost body control without making the dampers feel concrete-filled.Should I buy one?We would be tempted, if only for the excellent sports seats and the way the visual tweaks improve its looks. Sport trim is good value, and while dull steering ensures the Passat remains an average rather than entertaining steer, if you can live with the firmer ride it’s an appealing upgrade.Alastair Clements

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