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#15

in Affordable Midsize Cars

MSRP: $20,845 - $34,265
Invoice: $19,990 - $32,860
MPG: 22 City / 31 Hwy
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Volkswagen Passat Interior

Many reviewers think the 2014 Volkswagen Passat has high-end interior materials and a clean design. Critics are impressed with the amount of trunk and passenger room, saying the back seat is especially comfortable and roomy for adults. Some test drivers think the screen on the navigation system is not big enough, and the premium navigation system receives criticism for being slow when typing information in and adjusting the audio system.

  • "The quality of the VW Passat's interior materials is among the best in the class." -- Edmunds
  • "In our interior evaluation of the Passat, we awarded points for the upmarket look of the gauges and the precision feel of the knobs and levers, even if the materials aren't quite as nice as in older Passats." -- AutoTrader
  • "Overall, the Passat is loaded with upscale cues throughout. We liked the feel and thickness of the leather-wrapped steering wheel and the use of soft-touch material in all the right places, something we can’t say about the Passat’s little Jetta brother." -- Left Lane News (2012)

Seating

The base Passat has cloth seats, while higher trim levels offer leatherette seats, leather-trimmed seats with faux suede inserts, heated front seats and power-adjustable front seats. Critics are on the same page when it comes to the Passat’s back seat, saying it’s quite large for a midsize car and has plenty of legroom.

  • “In the rear compartment, meanwhile, the Passat offers so much space that we think it's a viable alternative to large cars such as the Toyota Avalon and Hyundai Azera." -- AutoTrader
  • "Spaciousness is the operative word when describing the Passat's cabin. Space up front is good; however, the driver seat only adjusts in six ways (minus lumbar), and it lacks the seat-bottom tilt found in most competitors. In back, the Passat verges on full-size sedan dimensions, as even good-sized adults will have room to stretch out their legs. The seatback cushion is too upright, however, which can result in taller occupants' heads grazing the roof." -- Edmunds
  • "The surprising take-away from the Passat was the cavernous rear seating area. We were totally chuffed by how much legroom was really there." -- Left Lane News (2012)
  • "This is the kind of car four tall adults could take on a long road trip and arrive no worse for wear - even those sitting in back." -- Cars.com (2012)

Interior Features

The 2014 Volkswagen Passat comes standard with Bluetooth, an auxiliary audio input and automatic headlights. The Passat can be equipped with features like VW’s Car-Net connected services (which connects to a compatible smartphone and includes 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), a rearview camera, navigation with a touch-screen display, a premium navigation system with a larger touch-screen display, HD Radio, satellite radio, a sunroof, remote start, push-button start, dual-zone automatic climate control, an eight-speaker upgraded touch-screen audio system with six-disc CD changer and an eight-speaker Fender premium audio system plus subwoofer and iPod integration.

Reviewers like the Passat’s logical dash layout and the available Fender audio system’s sound quality. On the other hand, they have qualms with the Passat’s navigation systems. They say the navigation system’s screen is too small and the premium navigation system is lethargic when entering information and adjusting the audio system.

See full 2014 Volkswagen Passat features and specs »

  • “The overall cabin design is decidedly upscale, while the layout of gauges and controls is refreshingly simple. The premium Fender audio system has been tuned to the acoustics of the interior and will please even hard-core audiophiles. Our only significant complaint relates to the optional navigation systems. The SE models have a lower-cost navigation unit with a small touchscreen display. You get a usefully larger screen in the SEL, but we've found this higher-end interface slower to process commands whether you're changing a radio station or entering a destination." -- Edmunds
  • "All Passats we've driven have had the available navigation system. This system uses a combination of buttons and touchscreen controls, and it also absorbs many of the audio system's functions. Most users will need to acclimate to it, and in one test car, the system was slow to react to inputs." -- Consumer Guide (2013)
  • "A clinical poke of the dash reveals it's not the squishy-soft rubbery goodness that we've been spoiled with, and the climate-control knobs spin with a grainy, sandy resistance rather than polished-stone fluidity." -- Automobile Magazine (2012)

Cargo

The 2014 VW Passat has 15.9 cubic feet of cargo space, which is more than what many affordable midsize cars offer. Test drivers are pleased with the amount of storage inside the Passat’s cabin, as well as its large, deep trunk. 

  • "The spacious trunk can swallow 15.9 cubic feet of cargo -- a number that bests many competitors -- and a large pass-through gives you plenty of room to haul bulkier items when the 60/40 seats are folded." -- Edmunds
  • "In the cabin, there is generous small-item storage that includes a good-size glovebox, door pockets with bottle holders, and a pair of covered cupholders." -- Consumer Guide (2013)
  • "The cavernous passenger area doesn't come at the expense of cargo room, as the trunk measures a competitive 15.9 cubic feet. It's very deep and rectangular, with few intrusions." -- Cars.com (2012)
Review Last Updated: 5/15/14

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