The Bottom Line: Lately automotive consumers have shifted their preferences from buying and leasing 4 door sedans, to crossovers, SUV's and pickup trucks. That trend has been going on for over 5 years, and the crossover, SUV and pickup truck market is now over 50% of US sales, and going higher each year. As the sedan market continues to shrink all the car companies have to be very competitive to make a 4 door car sale today.
Volkswagen knows this trend very well, as they have priced the updated 2020 VW Passat significantly less than the 2019 models, starting at only $22,995 for the base S sedan. That's a $2,275 drop in the base price, and the R-Line trim level also goes down another $1,325.
Today the 2020 Volkswagen Passat is available in four trims levels: S, SE, R-Line and SEL. Every trim uses the same turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine and six-speed automatic transmission. The engine is rated at 174 horsepower with 206 lb-ft of torque, and gets 27 MPG miles per gallon of fuel in combined city and highway driving.
The updated Volkswagen Passat now has LED headlamps, LED DRLs, cornering lights, LED tail lamps, electric sunroof and 17-inch alloy wheels. The interior features Nappa leather upholstery, an analogue clock, 3-zone climate control, and a large touch screen information system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Add in electrically adjustable front seats with massage and memory functions, hands free parking, adaptive chassis control, plus several more features that are in the SEL trim level.
This week Volkswagen sent me a 2020 Passat SEL Premium Edition to test drive. As the base Passat has a MSRP manufactures suggested retail price of only $22,995, this top of the line SEL Premium Edition has a starting price of $31,095. That's over $8,000 worth of options and it literally comes with every available feature in one big package. The options on the test car: None. The total MSRP window sticker price, including the $920 destination charge came to: $31,095.
The VW Passat competes in a crowded mid size sedan class. Among these sedans the Passat’s low price and long warranty stack up very well against the competition. The warranty is one of the best available in the US.
It starts with a 4 year / 50,000 mile complete New Vehicle Warranty that includes coverage for all power train components, and then adds a 7 year / 100,000 mile Corrosion Perforation warranty for total rust protection. Good to know if you live in the rust belt states that still use salt on the roadways.
The best addition to the warranty is the Carefree Scheduled Maintenance 2 year / 20,000 mile package that covers all oil changes, filters and labor, plus 24 hour Roadside Assistance for an additional 3 years / 36,000 miles for towing, jump starts, tire changes, out of fuel calls, and lock out services. That's a lot of piece of mind for several years of driving down the road. Now for free and included in the purchase price for all 2020 VW Passat sedans.
My Tourmaine Blue Metallic painted Passat SEL tester came with a Shetland Beige Vienna Leather interior with a Walnut Wood trimmed dash board and door panels, all at no addition charge. While the Passat car line comes with over 50 standard and safety features, the technology and convenience option list is over 15 items long too. Here are just a few of them.
Premium color Multifunction Display MFD dashboard. Its graphic and colorful interface shows your media, compatible phone, vehicle info and settings in plain sight in vivid colors.
Adaptive Cruise Control ACC. Helps the vehicle maintain a preset speed and distance from the car in front of you. When activated, if the car in front of you speeds up, or slows down, the sensors can detect the change, and your car follows suit up to the preset speed, or preset distance.
Intelligent Crash Response System ICRS. In the event of a collision that deploys the airbags, the ICRS can turn off the fuel pump, unlock the doors, and activates the hazard lights. It helps react, even if you might not be able to.
Rear View Camera System RVCS. Benefit from the view of a wide lens when you want it. It can help you see obstacles when backing up, a feature so helpful you’ll wonder how you ever managed without it.
Automatic Post Collision Braking System APCS. Not every collision brings a car to a full stop. That’s why VW vehicles include the Automatic Post Collision Braking System. It can help slow the vehicle down after a collision, reducing the chance of any additional impacts.
Climatronic dual zone climate control. Some like it cool. Others like it hot. With the dual zone climate control, you can make everyone happy.
My week in the Passat has been a pleasant one. With a mid size sedan there is plenty of room for everybody, and it has a full size trunk to lock away all your valuables from sight. While the heated front seats let you stay warm on chilly mornings, the 6.3 inch touch screen Fender sound system lets you experience your music through more than one of the senses. With voice control, and an intuitive proximity sensor behind a clear glass display, you’ll see, feel, and hear the difference.
Plus you can take your apps for a ride. To start App-Connect simply plug in your compatible smart phone, and watch as your selected apps appear on the touch screen display on the center stack screen. The goodie list for this car just goes on and on.
The bottom line on this updated 2020 VW Passat SEL Premium Edition is that it is a smooth driving, fuel efficient, comfortable everyday daily driver, with all of the options that you want, in a smart and good looking well built car, at a very competitive price.
When your ready to buy a sedan, you need to take a test drive in a Passat, because at less than $23,000 to start with, it's the best buy out there in the 4 door marketplace. A word to the wise is sufficient. And Stay Home, and Stay Safe.
Remember “You Are What You Drive ©”
And maybe, just for those reasons alone, you should “Drive one, Buy one, Today ©”.
This Bottom Line Review is provided by: Tony Leopardo © AutoWire.Net.
"Tony the Car Guy” is an automotive writer, editor and publisher in the San Francisco Bay Area. If you have a question, or comment for Tony, send it to firstname.lastname@example.org or visit AutoWire.Net at www.autowire.net
Column Name: You Are What You Drive - A Bottom Line Review
Topic: The 2020 Volkswagen Passat 2.0T SEL Premium Edition
Word Count: 1,173
Photo Caption: The 2020 Volkswagen Passat 2.0T SEL Premium Edition
Photo Credits: Volkswagen Internet Media
Series number: 2020 - 15
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2020 Volkswagen Passat 2.0T SEL
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2020 Volkswagen Passat 2.0T SEL