Watch th­ese curves

Volk­swa­gen’s Pas­sat CC is a lux­ury sedan at an af­ford­able price, writes NEIL DOWL­ING

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Road Test Volkswagen Passat Cc -

PEO­PLE can be so un­kind. Re­mem­ber the stretchedrub­ber curves of the Ford Taurus sold here briefly in 1996-98?

Con­tin­u­ing Ford’s then or­ganic styling and later dis­as­trously adopted by the AU Fal­con, the Taurus was never a hit be­cause of its shape. Ba­si­cally, peo­ple ridiculed it.

But was it the shape or was it just a bit too much too soon?

When Mercedes launched the CLS in 2005 with the same jel­ly­mould style, on­look­ers raved and buy­ers queued.

Now Volk­swa­gen has its own in­ter­pre­ta­tion of what the Euro­peans class as a coupe, al­beit one with four doors.

It’s too easy to look upon Volk­swa­gen’s Pas­sat CC (for Com­fort Coupe) and sug­gest it’s a steal from the Mercedes CLS. Or the Taurus.

It has sim­i­lar­i­ties with the Merc with its tar­get as pre­mium-car buy­ers, but de­liv­ers a four-door, four-seat lux­ury sedan at an af­ford­able price.

There are two mod­els, tur­bod­iesel and all-wheel-drive V6 petrol, at $54,990 and $65,990 re­spec­tively.

The V6 gets the big Audi-VW 3.6-litre unit that is sur­pris­ingly quick and, if you don’t drive with your body weight on the ac­cel­er­a­tor pedal, hap­pily fuel ef­fi­cient.

Ex­ter­nally the car is stun­ning. In­side, it’s prac­ti­cal and very Audi-ish, with soft leather, al­loy trim and com­pre­hen­sive, dis­creetly placed fea­tures.

You ex­pect qual­ity from Volk­swa­gen, but this is above the com­pany’s nor­mal level.

It equates more to the Audi — ar­guably the world’s best-built pro­duc­tion car — in the way the doors shut, the switches work, the di­als il­lu­mi­nate, the seats glide and the stereo sings.

On the road the CC is a solid thor­ough­bred sedan that mim­ics the driver’s whims and doesn’t up­set pas­sen­gers’ tran­quil­lity.

It could be $20,000 more and you’d be happy. But of course, you’re even hap­pier it isn’t.

Most buy­ers want the diesel CC. It has the peppy 2-litre en­gine found in most Audi, VW and Skoda ve­hi­cles.

The petrol model is $11,000 more and has less fuel econ­omy, though the fea­ture list is stronger and in­cludes the all-wheel-drive sys­tem and more power from the big V6.

It’s qui­eter than the diesel and not only bet­ter suits the pre­mium im­age Volk­swa­gen seeks, but also ap­peases buy­ers who like per­for­mance.

Pre­mium im­age: the Pas­sat CC is a qual­ity prod­uct in the way the doors shut, the switches work, the di­als il­lu­mi­nate and the seats glide.

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