Thursday, December 6, 2012

2012 Volkswagen Passat


One of the most highly anticipated world premieres of the 2011 NAIAS, the new U.S. market 2012 Volkswagen Passat, turned out to be one of the less exciting -at least in terms of design- introductions of the show. The US-built replacement for the European-sourced Passat literally looks like an extra-large Jetta, which drew its own share of criticism for its uninspired and generic looks. For comparison, we've added a few shots of the Jetta after the jump.

While the design may not be engaging, the car's lower sticker prices will certainly attract more buyers as the new Passat will start from around $20,000 or some $7,000 to $8,000 less than the 2011MY it replaces. However, keep in mind that while the base 2011 Passat was offered with a modern 200HP 2.0 TFSI, the entry-level 2012MY Passat will come with VW's old 2.5-liter five-cylinder unit rated at 170HP. Other engine options for U.S. buyers include a more frugal 140HP 2.0-liter turbo diesel that returns up to 43mpg, and a range topping 3.6-liter VR6 with 280HP and a 0-60mph sprint time of 6.5 seconds. Volkswagen will manufacture the 2012 Passat at its new $1 billion Chattanooga factory in Tennessee, the automaker's first U.S. assembly plant since it shut down its Pennsylvania plant in 1988. The mid-size saloon will go on sale in the States in mid-August.

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Born in the USA: 2012 VW Passat, Previously known as NMS

Volkswagen has finally lifted the covers of its New Midsize Sedan [NMS], and it's name is... Passat. In other words, the Wolfsburg-based carmaker chose to retain the Passat name for its new mid size sedan model, which has been specifically developed for the North American market and will be built at the firm's new US plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee.The four-door saloon model will be launched in the States in mid-August with an entry-level price in the US$20,000 range, according to the company. Final prices will be announced in March.

"There is hardly any other saloon of this size (exactly 191.7 inches or 4,868 mm long) that offers such high technology and quality at a comparable price," said Volkswagen in a statement. As previously mentioned, the new, U.S. market Passat has a length of 191.7 inches (4,868 mm). Its wheelbase is 110.4 inches (2,803 mm) and its width is 72.2 inches (1,835 mm), meaning its size has increased in all three dimensions compared to the previous model. This should translate to increased passenger space over the same-name model it replaces.

The sedan's exterior styling draws its inspiration from the recently launched Jetta, and not from the refreshed, European market, Passat - not that there's a huge difference... Not surprisingly, the interior also looks similar to the Jetta, albeit with more upscale trim. According to the German automaker, the car’s technology and styling came from Germany, while Volkswagen of America provided the conceptual direction. Talking about technology (or the lack it...), the entry-level Passat will be offered in the States with VW's familiar 2.5-liter five-cylinder motor producing 170-horsepower, while returning an estimated 31mpg on the highway. Other engine options will include a more frugal Clean Diesel (TDI) with 140HP and a highway fuel economy of 43mpg, and a six-cylinder petrol engine, the 3.6-liter VR6 with 280-horsepower, which is paired with a standard dual clutch transmission (DSG), returning 28mpg on the highway and completing the 0-60mph sprint in 6.5 seconds.

 Buyers in the U.S. will have a choice of three equipment lines: S, SE and SEL. The base version will come equipped with a tire pressure monitoring system, ESP, ABS with braking assistant, Hill Climb Assist (with manual transmission and DSG), and six airbags Other standard features include electric windows all round, air conditioning, insulating glass, an analogue clock in the center of the instrument panel, cruise control, outside temperature display with frost warning, radio-CD system (MP3-capable, plus external audio input) and a Bluetooth hands-free mobile phone system (with voice activation).

La nuova generazione di Volkswagen Passat, che arriverà sul mercato tra il 2013 ed il 2014, sarà dotata anche di un motore diesel TDI bi-turbo, che garantirà (ovviamente) maggiore potenza rispetto al fratello a singola sovralimentazione

La nuova generazione di Volkswagen Passat sarà svelata a cavallo tra il prossimo anno ed il successivo e sarà un’importante evoluzione rispetto all’attuale Passat, in vendita dall’autunno del 2010. Ne abbiamo già parlato: la nuova Passat sarà più leggera, più spaziosa, più moderna, più tecnologica, più efficiente e verrà messa al mondo sulla piattaforma modulare a motore trasversale MQB, la stessa che viene usata dalla nuova generazione di Audi A3 e che sarà sfruttata anche dalla nuova Volkswagen Golf. Cosa ci porta, oggi, ad occuparci ancora di Volkswagen Passat? Una notizia che riguarda la gamma di propulsori della vettura di segmento D del brand di Wolfsburg: pare che la nuova Passat sarà proposta anche con un motore TDI diesel bi-turbo.

Secondo le chiacchiere, il brand tedesco vuole proporre una scelta diesel, tra i motori, che sviluppi più di 170 cavalli (il limite a cui arriva oggi il 2,0 litri TDI di Passat), senza per questo ricorrere all’uso di motori a sei cilindri: la scelta di un sistema di sovralimentazione doppio potrebbe fare al caso dell’azienda (esperimento già provato sotto il cofano di Volkswagen Amarok, sove batte un 2,0 litri BiTDI bi-turbo da 122 o 163 cavalli).

Ricordiamo che la nuova Volkswagen Passat sarà proposta in versione berlina e in versione station wagon, in versione coupé (inedita) ed in versione cabriolet (la nuova generazione di Volkswagen Eos); Volkswagen CC (già Volkswagen Passat CC) dovrebbe invece definitivamente smarcarsi dalla famiglia Passat e diventare un modello completamente unico, senza legami, pensato per colmare il gap che divide la vettura di segmento D dall’ammiraglia Volkswagen Phaeton... 

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