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While the Volkswagen Passat is the only European car in the family sedan midsize segment, it’s built in Tennessee and geared for the American market.

The Passat is known for its European styling, which sets it apart from other leading competitors like the Nissan Altima, Honda Accord, Mazda 6, and Ford Fusion.

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The Passat hasn’t changed much over the past few years. It went through a 2012 redesign and added a few minor changes one year later. The most notable change was a new center console with rear air vents in the SE and higher trims, plus the addition of a backup camera in the SEL model.

Well priced ($22,095) at its base model, watch out when you want something a little more upscale. Adding popular options can jump this midsize sedan to a high of $34,265.

Like the Jetta sedan, the Passat has added the new turbocharged 1.8-liter, four-cylinder that produces 170 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque to its engine lineup.

Volkswagen says it will eventually replace the 2.5-liter, five-cylinder engine that has 170 horsepower and 177 pound-feet of torque. The engine comes in all base model Passats.

The Passat also has two other engine choices, the 2.0-liter, four-cylinder diesel that produces 140 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque, and the power-laden 3.6-liter V6, which cranks out 280 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque.

One major plus with the Passat is the room – it’s sizable and features a smart design. One receives a roomy feel when driving the Passat and it’s nice to know that the folks in the back seat will have that same feeling, thanks to 30.1 inches of legroom. The back seat also has a center armrest with cupholders. The cargo area is spacious as well with 15.9 cubic feet.

Ride quality is also another plus. The Passat offers a quiet ride and handles uneven surfaces well, effectively muffling the bumps. This sedan handles nicely on challenging turns and overall has a refined demeanor in all types of driving situations.

The Passat is a polished sedan that remains unchanged overall – it features many enviable qualities. A nice bargain when choosing the base model, but note that he more upscale models jump quite a bit higher in price.

2014 Volkswagen Passat

  • Performance: 2.5-liter, five-cylinder, 170 horsepower; 1.8-liter, turbocharged four-cylinder, 170 horsepower; turbocharged 2.0-liter, four-cylinder diesel, 140 horsepower; 3.6-liter, V6, 280 horsepower
  • Mileage estimate range: 22-32 mpg
  • Estimated price: $22,095 to $34,265
  • Warranty: 3 years/36,000 miles; drivetrain 5 years/60,000 miles; roadside assistance 3 years/36,000; corrosion 12 years/100,000
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