GO
#16

in Affordable Midsize Cars

MSRP: $20,845 - $34,265
Invoice: $19,990 - $32,860
MPG: 22 City / 31 Hwy
Find the best local price: submit
How the Best Price Program works »

Volkswagen Passat Review

The 2014 Volkswagen Passat ranks 16 out of 21 Affordable Midsize Cars. This ranking is based on our analysis of published reviews and test drives of the Volkswagen Passat, as well as reliability and safety data.

The 2014 Volkswagen Passat is geared toward buyers who need lots of space and want a sedan that’s more fun to drive than the typical midsize car, reviewers say. 

Automotive journalists agree that the 2014 VW Passat delivers a more enjoyable driving experience than other midsize cars in its class, saying it offers strong engine choices, a comfortable ride and composed handling. The 2014 Passat is available with a new turbocharged four-cylinder engine, which is replacing the base five-cylinder engine. Reviewers say the new turbo four is strong and delivers power smoothly. Models with this engine get 24/34 mpg city/highway, which is about average for the class. A turbodiesel four-cylinder is also available, and critics are impressed with its acceleration and excellent fuel economy of up to 31/43 mpg city/highway. A V6 engine is also available for 2014, which reviewers say has potent power. Four transmissions are available, depending which Passat model and trim you choose: two manuals, an automatic and an automated manual. Although no test driver says the Passat is a sports sedan, they say its dynamic handling and comfortable ride present buyers with an enjoyable driving experience. The Passat also comes with safety features like Volkswagen’s Intelligent Crash Response System, which automatically shuts off the fuel supply, unlocks the doors and turns the hazard lights on if an accident occurs.

Test drivers say that the quality of the materials inside the 2014 Passat’s cabin, as well as its roominess, are two of the Passat’s best attributes. Test drivers say there is plenty of room in the back seat for adults, and that it’s comfortable for road trips. They also like the large trunk. The 2014 Passat’s standard features include Bluetooth, an auxiliary audio input and automatic headlights. The Passat can be equipped with features like VW’s new Car-Net connected services, which pairs with your smartphone to offer roadside assistance, automatic crash notification, stolen vehicle location assistance, remote car access, speed alerts, a car health report and an improved point of interest service on models with navigation. Other available features include two different navigation systems, a rearview camera, HD Radio, satellite radio, a sunroof, remote start, push-button start, dual-zone climate control and two different premium sound systems. Reviewers like the Fender premium sound system for its impressive sound quality. They’re disappointed with the one navigation system’s small touch screen, as well as the premium navigation system’s slow response to user inputs.

  • "In a segment dominated by Korean, Japanese, and American powerhouses, Volkswagen's Passat stands proudly as a solid German alternative to the midsize competition. Although its styling is safer and personality a tad more restrained, the base Passat's improved powertrain and agreeable interior make it a satisfying choice for drivers who prefer German-and savoring all the driver-focused functionality that comes with it." -- Popular Mechanics
  • "Taken with its improved manners and drivability, the volume Passat now finds itself in a position to snag more mid-size market share." -- Car and Driver
  • “Other family sedans may be flashier, but the Passat provides one of the best all-around combinations of performance, features and value." -- AutoTrader
  • "Set apart by its European-style refinement, roomy interior and fuel-efficient diesel engine option, the 2014 Volkswagen Passat is a solid choice for a family sedan." -- Edmunds

Other Cars to Consider

Critics like the Nissan Altima’s nimble handling, and say its performance delivers a dose of fun that many affordable midsize cars lack. The Altima also has better fuel economy than the base Passat.

The redesigned 2014 Mazda6 is well-liked among reviewers for its excellent fuel economy, engaging performance and roomy, high-quality cabin. It also has more standard features than the Passat.

Compare the Passat, Altima and Mazda6 »

Details: 2014 Volkswagen Passat

The five-seat 2014 VW Passat is available in four trim levels (S, Wolfsburg Edition, SE and SEL) and with four engines (five-cylinder, turbo four-cylinder, turbodiesel four-cylinder and V6). The powertrain lineup also includes four transmissions (five- and six-speed manual, six-speed automatic and six-speed DSG automated manual). For 2014, the Passat gets a new turbocharged four-cylinder engine and a new steering system on models with this engine. The VW Passat was last redesigned for the 2012 model year, and besides the new engine, sees minimal changes for 2014, so this overview uses applicable research and reviews from the 2012, 2013 and 2014 model years.

See the full 2014 Volkswagen Passat specs »

Review Last Updated: 5/15/14

Next Steps: Volkswagen Passat