Touted as a “large family car,” the Passat is what you need when a Golf or Jetta just won’t cut it. It’s gone through six generations since 1973, which means it’s been perfected over the decades. Somewhere between the Jetta and Phaeton lies the Passat, with the Passat CC making a debut in 2008 as the “four-door coupe” that every family must have. There are technically two kinds of Passats available, the TDI and SE, but the TDI offers a few more options in that lineup. Drivers can choose from a TDI SE, TDI SE with sunroof, or TDI SE with sunroof and nav for those who truly want it all.
Technically a German company, Volkswagens are manufactured all around the world. However, when the massive new American plant opened in Tennessee, it was announced that this would be the new manufacturing home of the Passat. Drivers who want American made and German engineering get the best of both worlds with this machine. Plus, this ride was awarded the Motor Trend Car of the Year in 2012, which seals the deal for those who are on the fence about a Passat vs. another model.
MSRP for Passats starts just a hair under $27,000, making them an affordable option for many Utah drivers. Buyers can also get unbeatable warranties along with zero-pressure, genuine teams at their disposal from sales to parts and repair. If something goes wrong with your Passat, you can count on a locally owned business to get you back on the road. That’s crucial when you have a vehicle with heatable front bucket seats, a compass and valet function. With that kind of luxury at your fingertips, you deserve to enjoy every second behind the wheel (or in the passenger seat).
Remote keyless entry is standard on all models, with icy cold air conditioning idyllic for those hot summer days and leather or leatherette trim for that posh addition that ties it all together. Spacious, bold and with a just the right hint of elegance, there’s a reason Passats have built a reputation of excellence for over 40 years.
Meet the Competition
Only Volkswagen can deliver such a powerful and gorgeous crossover for under $24,000. The Tiguan is VW’s answer to those who need a part sedan, part SUV, and 100 percent fuel-efficient, powerful vehicle to get from Point A to Point B (no matter how many miles in between). It’s based on the PQ35 platform, the same as the Golf, and no matter the model you’ll get two-row seating and a powerful four-cylinder engine under the hood. Originally making its debut as a concept vehicle at the 2006 Los Angeles International Auto Show, and then again as a production model at the 2007 Frankfurt Motor Show, there was plenty of excitement built up well before the first Tiguan hit the US highways. The first Tiguan was manufactured as Auto 500, an experimental VW “company within company” right in Wolfsburg.
True German engineering at its finest, there are well over 750,000 Tiguans sold around the globe, but the US, Europe and Russia are the biggest fans. Euro NCAP awarded the machine a five-star safety rating, which is a must for any safety-minded driver. Named for a blend of tiger and leguan (German for iguana), the Tiguan was dubbed after a content hosted by Autobild, a German car magazine.
No matter which model you choose, enjoy six airbags, the Trailer Stability Program with ESP, Isofix for child seat anchors and an e-parking brake complete with an auto-hold function. The RCD 210 radio complete with CD player, four electric lift windows, and heated outside mirrors make every trip better, and that semi-auto climate control system has everyone comfortable and cozy. However, for those who opt fo the Sport & Style options, you’ll get a slew of additional features like chrome roof railing and a height-adjustable armrest. The Track & Field package? Hill descent assistance, ABS and EDS adaptation, and hill ascent assistance are at your fingertips.