2010 Volkswagen Passat Wagon Performance
This performance review was created when the car was new. Some links may no longer point to an active page.
The 2010 Passat Wagon is one of the strongest performers in its class, thanks to slick handling, a fuel-sipping-yet-fun turbocharged four-cylinder engine and an engaging DSG transmission.
Acceleration and Power
For 2010, only one engine is available on the Passat Wagon: a turbocharged 200-horsepower four-cylinder. While some buyers may want the V6 power offered by competitors, most reviewers like the Passat Wagon's engine.
Passat Wagon buyers may do without V6 power, but in return they'll get better fuel economy. The EPA estimates that the Passat Wagon gets 22/31 miles per gallon city/highway.
The Passat Wagon comes standard with VW's DSG transmission, which is basically a manual transmission that shifts automatically. The payoff for drivers is improved performance with little input from them, though the transmission can be shifted manually when the driver chooses.
- "The new DSG transmission is a revelation, handily topping rivals with its quick yet smooth shifts. Yes, the Passat's engine is down a few cylinders, but that's not really an issue in light of its peppy turbocharged performance, relaxed highway manner and respectable fuel economy." -- Edmunds
- "The turbocharged 4-cylinder is sprightly from a stop and is impressive in midrange and highway passing. It depends on a blend of turbo boost and transmission downshifts for best response, however." -- Consumer Guide
- "What's worst about the Passat is its Japanese six-speed automatic. It's slow to kick down yet, under part throttle, is lightning fast to upshift to fifth. Or sixth. You're too often reminded that summoning the appropriate gear will take a while, and even the manumatic refuses to hold a gear if engine revs encroach on scarlet paint." -- Car and Driver
Handling and Braking
The Passat Wagon's German-tuned suspension makes it one of the better handlers in the class. Reviewers say the steering is accurate and the Passat Wagon can handle corners with aplomb. The standard anti-lock brakes also get good reviews.
- "The steering is firm, accurate, and nicely weighted. Straight-line tracking is confident at highway speed. Good cornering grip and balance. The brakes deliver solid-stopping control," -- Consumer Guide
- "Though it can be hustled through corners, the Passat feels more at home cruising on the highway... It's the kind of car you can step out of after driving for half a day and not feel worn out -- probably one of its best attributes."-- Cars.com
- "It's quick on its feet, with precise steering and good power; autobahn breeding shows to good advantage." -- Car and Driver
- "The Passat's brakes stop the heavy wagon from 60 mph in just 127 feet with a firm pedal." -- Edmunds