The All new 2016 Volkswagen Passat is here on our shores and ready for deliveries.
Stallion Motors Nigeria Ltd held a press launch for this current marque recently.
This new Passat is new in every sense of it. As great and innovative changes were effected over the out-gone model from the engine, design, interior and to other critical areas.
For starters, this model weighs an impressive 85 kilograms lighter than its predecessor. And this improves the fuel economy and dynamics greatly.
When you first meet the new Passat, the first realization is that the car has gained slightly more body mass especially with its wheelbase and width; and this translates to improved legroom and space for the occupants of the car. A six-foot guy like me felt very comfortable both at the front and rear of the car without having to adjust the seats specially.
This is after having appreciated the sharp and handsome looks that is projected to always ensure that your car stands out among its peers in the same automotive category.
With the approach of the car, the distinctive chrome lid of the bonnet and LED day-time running lights (DRL) seems like a well lined eyelashes of a seductive and beautiful female, surrounding the powerful Xenon headlights that cuts a wider swath of light once activated.
A closer look at the lower bumper reveals a camera that works in concert with three others, well positioned to provide a 360 degrees view of the car which is very useful to improve safety and utility. (This feature is only available for the top-of-the-range model which is just the only other model apart from the ‘base’ model on offer here in Nigeria).
This Passat is loaded with new amenities that hitherto were the exclusive preserve of much more expensive cars.
For instance, one can also notice that the side mirrors on this car are now mounted on the doors rather than the edge of the door-frame as used to be the case and thus greatly improves airflow round the body of the car and also gives it a nicer look when folded. This also helps the cameras mounted on them to have a wider view.
Getting to the rear of the car, you immediately notice the beauty of the back of the car that will always make cars following you jealous. The new rear lights will forever keep them in awe of the technological magic of the system as under forward movement when the Daytime Running Lights (DRL) are on, the brakelights are displayed in bright horizontal stripes and once you apply your brakes, they immediately change to vertical stripes and even get brighter, working in concert with the third brakelight up on the parcel-shelf to ensure following traffic knows your intentions clearly.
The very bold VW emblem that occupies a conspicuous position on the boot looks just like any other docile logo, but apart from serving as the optional (if you don’t want to use the power button inside) opening button for the boot, it houses the reverse camera and flips up automatically once the reverse gear is engaged or you manually activate the rear camera to get a 360 degrees view of the car. Is this not epic swag?
Under the hood, a new 1.8 liter TSI engine with an output of 132KW powers the two variants of the Passat sold here in Nigeria. And also features a new Active Cylinder Management Technology (ACT) that shuts down half of the cylinders when the engine is operating under light conditions and opens them up once maximum power is needed seamlessly without the driver and the occupants even noticing the transitions. This is another of the new Passat’s features to greatly improve fuel economy and engine optimization.
Getting inside the car, the feel of the car’s door closing is unmistakably German, very solid and reassuring.
The also new steering wheel features a new layout and is more beautiful to the eyes and hands, more importantly, at whatever position, the instrument cluster is visible to the driver. The steering wheel even has a slightly flat lower rim to give that racing feel and ensure it doesn’t hit the keep resting on the driver’s laps.
All the guages and digital read-outs in the instrument cluster are very legible while also been easy on the eyes. While the infotainment system screen is also wide enough (6.5 inches), intuitive and easy to use. With 8 loudspeakers, the audio sensation is just phenomenal.
The Bluetooth system installed in this car has the capacity for two handsets to be paired to it for a seamless hands free operation and in response to the yearnings of customers, there is now a USB port.
The new AC vents run completely from one end of the dashboard to the other end and ensures the air from the vents is well distributed inside the cabin, optimally utilizing the two front-zones of the climatronic unit while the third zone is also well vented through the rear of the center console for the rear-seat occupants.
The bucket seats have very good support and are multi-adjustable giving awesome comfort, helping to make sure that your every ride in the car is a wonderful experience.
Even the gear lever, made out of brushed metal, with the DSG embossed on it and the lower portion skirted with leather is another beauty to behold.
There is even an integrated fire extinguisher under the front passenger’s seat, this ensures that Nigerian buyers get a complete package incase of emergencies and to avoid issues with traffic law enforcers.
The attention to detail put into this car is second to none, even the boot is not left out and the room inside it is very generous. And is complimented by the 40/20/40 folding feature of the rear seats to further increase the loading area of the boot in order to accommodate longer or wider loads in the boot.
It is also noteworthy that it still rides on 145mm ground clearance and this ensures that this car is not grounded by high road imperfections and navigation through rough roads is overcome with ease.
For now, the Passat starts from #9,200,000 but be rest assured that once they start manufacturing it here in Nigeria hopefully from later this year, the price will still be considerably reduced.
This all new Passat is a true embodiment of poise, panache and performance all rolled into one great package, no wonder it had already won the Car Of The Year award in Europe.