VOLKSWAGEN

VOLKSWAGEN PASSAT ESTATE 1.4 TSI PHEV GTE 5dr DSG

Fuel

FuelPetrol/PlugIn Elec Hybrid

Transmission

TransmissionAutomatic

Acceleration

0 - 62 mph7.6s

EC Combined (mpg)

EC Combined-

Volkswagen's plush medium range contender goes green in plug-in petrol electric hybrid GTE form. A nature lover dressed in a business suit, the Passat GTE delivers all the style and status a busy professional would need but does so with green-tinged smugness. Expect it to be a bit pricier than diesel models though.

PLUGGED-IN PASSAT

Volkswagen has updated the technology of its plug-in hybrid Passat GTE. Jonathan Crouch takes a look.

Ten Second Review

Volkswagen's plush medium range contender goes green in plug-in petrol electric hybrid GTE form. A nature lover dressed in a business suit, the Passat GTE delivers all the style and status a busy professional would need but does so with green-tinged smugness. Expect it to be a bit pricier than diesel models though.

Background

Over eight generations, the Volkswagen Passat has evolved from a slightly oddly-proportioned family car into today's handsome saloon or estate model that comes close to stepping on the toes of sister-brand, Audi. The GTE suffix was first used on the Golf plug-in hybrid and the technology was subsequently introduced into the Passat range, reducing emissions and improving fuel economy in a car that traditionally covers higher mileage. Plug-in hybrid technology will make a lot more sense for many buyers than conventional hybrid engines do. Keep the car charged up and if all you cover is a normal commuting distance, you could conceivably never have to fuel the car up at all. Yet, unlike a full-electric car, there's seamless transition to full engine technology for longer distances. This revised Passat GTE gets a bigger drive battery, 30% more zero-emissions range and some extra drive mode functionality.

Driving Experience

Moving off from a standstill, the Passat always begins in silent electric mode. Once on the move (or when it's more prudent to save battery-life to use later on in the journey), e-Mode can be turned off and the 1.4-litre TSI petrol engine will take over. As the GTE drives in this setting, it will be recharging the battery pack and making full use of regenerative braking to top up the electricity on board. When the two power units are working together, they produce a combined 218PS, which allows the car to accelerate to 62mph in 7.6 seconds and on to a top speed of 140mph. The characteristics of an electric motor mean that the full power is available instantly, unlike in an internal combustion unit where the maximum output is only available when it reaches a certain engine speed. This can often have the effect of making a hybrid or electric car feel quicker than the figures suggest. The Passat GTE can achieve 81mph on electric mode, so there is no concern about travelling at motorway speeds, and in this revised model, the battery range has increased fto up to 36 miles under new-style WLTP rating. This improved design is also able to blend petrol and electric power more cleverly when you're using the car's more laid-back driver modes to emphasise real-world fuel economy. And it can use data from the navigation system to decide when to run the car on its electric motor, when to run it under petrol power, and how the two power sources should be combined to get you efficiently to your destination.

Design and Build

After seven generations of slightly quirky design, the eighth VW Passat emerged as a rather handsome, well proportioned automobile and has been improved in this revised form with full-LED head and tail lights that emphasise the car's width. The GTE variant is available not only as a saloon but also in an estate guise that gives this hybrid excellent load carrying ability and versatility. The exterior is thoroughly modern and gives this generation Passat a more prestigious appearance than its predecessor. A narrow blue line across the top of the grille identifies this as the plug-in hybrid model. A high-quality interior reinforces the grand touring purpose of the GTE, with comfortable ergonomic seats designed to reduce driver fatigue on longer journeys. Compared to the diesel models, the only compromise in space is down to the placement of the lithium-ion battery pack under the rear seats, which has resulted in the fuel tank taking up some hidden storage space in boot of the car. As in any normal Passat, the dashboard features a big central screen (in this revised car, it's VW's third generation 'MIB' touchscreen infotainment system). In the case of the GTE, this display has a range of other eco-minded functions. Through the steering wheel, you can specify a set of optional digital 'virtual' dials. The seats, as in most Volkswagens, initially feel unyielding but are supremely comfortable over longer distances. Three adults can fit in the back too.

Market and Model

There's inevitably a premium to pay for this GTE over, say, a top Passat diesel and these days, there's no helpful government Plug-in car grant to soften the blow. Nevertheless, Volkswagen still thinks this GTE variant will account for around 25% of Passat sales. That's despite the fact that you'll need to approach purchase with a budget of around £36,500 in mind. That's for the standard saloon variant; you'll need another £1,500 for the Estate derivative. There are standard and 'advance' trim levels. The GTE comes with 'Car-Net Guide & Inform', a system that delivers information such as traffic, petrol prices, and free parking, to the navigation screen through a range of apps. Many of these apps can be controlled via your smartphone. Car-Net e-Remote allows you to monitor the charge of your GTE battery, and can help direct you to your Passat if you've returned to a busy car park without remembering where exactly you had parked. Other equipment includes a blue-stitched, leather-trimmed three-spoke multi-function steering wheel, stainless steel pedals, 2Zone climate control and a 'Composition Media' infotainment system with a 6.5-inch touchscreen display. This offers access to Bluetooth telephony, the usual informational functions, SD card and USB connectivity and a DAB tuner as part of an eight-speaker stereo system.

Cost of Ownership

First the headlines. Volkswagen claims an unlikely-sounding 217.9mpg WLTP combined cycle fuel figure for this car, along with a squeaky-clean 29g/km of WLTP-rated CO2. Plus under the WLTP cycle, it's now supposed to be able to travel on full-electric power for up to 36 miles when fully-charged. In other words, if the vehicle is only used for short commutes and re-charged regularly overnight, it is conceivable that this GTE can be run entirely on off-peak electricity, costing pennies rather than pounds to consume. The combined range of the petrol and electric motor is around 660 miles, making it an ideal comfortable car for longer journeys. The extent to which you can charge this car up from the mains is also obviously going to make quite a difference to your overall running costs. Doing so inevitably takes a lot less time than it would in a comparable full-electric car - say something like a Nissan Leaf. That's because the batteries of a Plug-in hybrid car like this one are much smaller. Powering this Volkswagen up from a domestic socket would take four hours and fifteen minutes, but most owners will want to find an extra couple of hundred pounds to install a Wallbox charger in their garages. Use such a wallbox - or indeed plug in to one of the many public charging points springing up around the country - and you'll be able to reduce your charging time period from empty to just two hours and thirty minutes.

Summary

This Passat GTE will make a lot of sense for the right kind of buyer, scoring in the way that it makes something so complicated so universally acceptable. There's no weird bodywork. No confusing digital read-outs. No odd driving technique to master. Here, you simply get a Passat very much as you might have always known it. Just one with a little extra to offer. Yes, differences come with the plug-in hybrid technology, but as a driver, you're not forced to embrace them. Indeed, drive this car in full-engine mode and you could conceivably fail to notice anything out of the ordinary about it at all. Everything's so straightforward - so normal. Just leave the thing in its 'Hybrid Auto' setting and you'll get diesel-like fuel economy with a real surging turn of pace when you need it. Even if you never once plugged this car in, you'd probably be perfectly happy with what you had. It's all deceptively unique. It's all a taste of the future - but in a car very much for today.

  • Rain sensor
  • Heated rear window
  • Rear window wash/wipe
  • Front and rear electric windows
  • Rear tinted glass from B pillar backwards, approx 65% tinted

  • Disc brakes front and rear
  • Volkswagen roadside assistance
  • Automatic post collision braking
  • Electronic parking brake with auto hold
  • Hill hold function
  • Blue brake callipers
  • ABS (Anti locking brake system) includes BAS (Brake assist) and EBD (Electronic brake pressure distribution)

  • Front + rear carpet mats

  • Wireless app connect
  • Security and service including e-call

  • Proactive occupant protection
  • Adaptive cruise control including Front Assist, radar sensor controlled distance monitoring system, City emergency braking system
  • Driver profile selection
  • Driver alert system
  • Lane assist
  • Speed sensitive power steering

  • One touch indicator turn signal
  • Socket AC Type 2

  • Speedo and rev counter, electronic odometer, trip, service interval display and fuel gauge
  • Traffic jam assist
  • Low washer fluid warning light
  • Warning buzzer and light for front seatbelts unfastened
  • Exterior temperature gauge with frost alarm
  • Multifunction computer includes visual gear

  • Body coloured door mirrors with intergrated indicators
  • Remote electrically adjustable and foldable heated door mirrors including automatic dimming function on drivers side door mirror puddle lights
  • Auto dimming interior rear view mirror

  • Chrome air vent and instrument surround
  • Unique GTE instrument cluster
  • Cross hatch decorative inserts in dash and door panels

  • Exterior e-sound
  • Battery regeneration during braking
  • Misfuel prevention device
  • Petrol Particulate Filter

  • DAB Digital radio receiver
  • Aerial for radio integrated into rear windscreen

  • Unique GTE badging
  • Unique GTE radiator grille with blue strip
  • Trapezoid exhaust tailpipes, left and right
  • Volkswagen roundel
  • White instrument lighting
  • Gloss black finish on B pillar
  • Charging point inlet on radiator grille
  • Silver anodised roof rails
  • Black radiator grille with chrome louvres
  • Chrome side window surrounds
  • Fully galvanised body
  • Body colour door handles
  • Body colour bumpers

  • LED rear lights
  • Automatic headlights with dusk sensor
  • High level 3rd brake light
  • LED rear number plate lights
  • Warning lights for open tailgate and doors
  • Automatic leaving home and manual coming home lighting functions

  • Climate control - 3 Zone electronic air conditioning with automatic air recirculation

  • Leather trimmed three spoke multifunction steering wheel and gear knob with blue contrast stitching
  • 12V socket in front centre console
  • Load lashing points x 4 in luggage compartment
  • Rear seat centre armrest with storage compartment
  • Driver's door storage compartment for 1.0 litre bottle
  • Front passenger storage compartment for 1.5 litre bottle
  • Height adjustable and removable variable boot floor
  • Front centre armrest with storage compartment and two rear air vents
  • Storage compartment in rear doors
  • Vienna leather upholstery + heated front seats + heated windscreen washer jets
  • Front cupholders x2 with covers
  • Extending luggage compartment cover with convenience opening, stowable
  • Two charging cables 16amp for wallbox/chargepoints (mode 3) and 10amp mains charge cable (mode 2)
  • 12V socket in luggage compartment
  • Load through provision
  • Lockable, illuminated, cooled glovebox
  • Storage compartment in roof console with cover
  • Height/reach adjust steering wheel

  • Luggage compartment lighting
  • Front and rear interior lighting with delay and dimming function

  • Height adjustable front 3 point seatbelts + pretensioners
  • 3x3 point rear seatbelts
  • Driver/Front Passenger airbags
  • Drivers knee airbag
  • Rigid safety cell with front and rear crumple zones
  • First aid kit
  • Door open warning reflectors
  • Warning light for rear seat belts if unfastened
  • Rear seat side impact airbags
  • Pre crash preventive occupant protection
  • Tyre pressure loss indicator
  • Front and rear passenger curtain airbags
  • Drivers and front passengers safety optimised head restraints, longitudinal and height adjustable
  • Front airbags with deactivation switch
  • Front side impact airbag

  • Front seats with lumbar adjustment
  • Isofix child seat preparation, outer rear seats
  • ergoComfort seat with seat cushion tilt adjustment, thigh support and electric backrest adjustment on the driver side
  • 40:20:40 split folding rear seats with backrest
  • Height adjustable rear seat head restraints (x3)
  • Driver/front passenger seat height adjustment

  • Electronic engine immobiliser
  • Alarm with interior protection and deactivation via infotainment system

  • Illuminated vanity mirrors

  • Battery Charge Slow Time (Minutes): 300
  • Battery Charge Slow kW: 2.3
  • Battery Charge Slow Percentage: 0-100
  • Battery Charge Fast Time (Minutes): 213
  • Battery Charge Fast kW: 3.6
  • Battery Charge Fast Percentage: 0-100
  • Battery Charge Rapid Time (Minutes): N
  • Battery Charge Rapid kW: N
  • Battery Charge Rapid Percentage: N
  • Battery Charge Super Charge Time (Minutes): N
  • Battery Charge Super Charge kW: N
  • Battery Charge Super Charge Percentage: N
  • Coupler/Connector Type: Type 2
  • Battery Capacity in kWh: 13
  • NEDC Maximum EV Range Miles: 41
  • Battery Leased: False
  • Battery Type: Lithium-ion
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (km) - City: 61
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (km) - Comb: 57
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (km) - Comb - Min: 57
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (km) - Comb - Max: 56
  • WLTP - EC AC Weighted (kWh/100km) - Comb: 16.4
  • WLTP - EC AC Weighted (miles/kWh) - Comb: 3.8
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (miles) - City: 38
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (miles) - Comb: 35.4
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (miles) - Comb - Max: 34.8
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (miles) - Comb - Min: 35.4

  • CO2 (g/km): 36
  • Standard Euro Emissions: EURO 6
  • HC+NOx: N
  • Particles: N

  • WLTP - CO2 Ch Sus (g/km) - Comb: 145
  • WLTP - CO2 Ch Sus (g/km) - Comb - Min: 144
  • WLTP - CO2 Ch Sus (g/km) - Comb - Max: 157
  • WLTP - CO2 Charge Depleting (g/km) - Comb: 9
  • WLTP - CO2 Charge Depleting (g/km) - Comb - Min: 9
  • WLTP - CO2 Charge Depleting (g/km) - Comb - Max: 15
  • WLTP - CO2 Weighted (g/km) - Comb: 31
  • WLTP - CO2 Weighted (g/km) - Comb - Min: 31
  • WLTP - CO2 Weighted (g/km) - Comb - Max: 35

  • Engine Code: CB56YY
  • CC: 1395
  • Cylinders: 4
  • Cylinder Layout: IN-LINE
  • Number of Valves: 16
  • Camshaft: DOHC
  • Fuel Delivery: TURBO DIRECT INJECTION
  • Catalytic Convertor: True
  • Engine Layout: FRONT TRANSVERSE
  • Transmission: SEMI-AUTO
  • Gears: 6 SPEED

  • EC Directive 1999/100/EC Applies: False

  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (mpg) - Low: 30.1
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (mpg) - Medium: 47.9
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (mpg) - High: 52.3
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (mpg) - Extra High: 40.9
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (mpg) - Comb: 42.8
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (mpg) - Comb - Min: 42.8
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (mpg) - Comb - Max: 40.9
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (l/100km) - Low: 9.4
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (l/100km) - Medium: 5.9
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (l/100km) - High: 5.4
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (l/100km) - Extra High: 6.9
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (l/100km) - Comb: 6.6
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (l/100km) - Comb - Min: 6.6
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (l/100km) - Comb - Max: 6.9
  • WLTP - FC Ch Dep (l/100km) - Comb: 0.4
  • WLTP - FC Weighted (l/100km) - Comb: 1.4
  • WLTP - FC Weighted (l/100km) - Comb - Min: 1.4
  • WLTP - FC Weighted (l/100km) - Comb - Max: 1.5
  • WLTP - FC Ch Dep (mpg) - Comb: 706.2
  • WLTP - FC Weighted (mpg) - Comb: 201.8
  • WLTP - FC Weighted (mpg) - Comb - Min: 201.8
  • WLTP - FC Weighted (mpg) - Comb - Max: 188.3

  • Service Interval Mileage: 18000
  • Service Interval Frequency - Months: 24
  • Timing Belt Interval Mileage: 150000
  • Timing Belt Interval Frequency - Months: N
  • NCAP Adult Occupant Protection %: N
  • NCAP Child Occupant Protection %: N
  • NCAP Pedestrian Protection %: N
  • NCAP Safety Assist %: N
  • NCAP Overall Rating - Effective February 09: N
  • Badge Power: 218
  • Badge Engine CC: 1.4
  • Vehicle Homologation Class: M1
  • Generation Mark: 6
  • Alternative Fuel Qualifying: True
  • Did at least one aspect of this vehicle's safety give cause for concern?: False
  • Standard manufacturers warranty - Years: 3
  • Standard manufacturers warranty - Mileage: 60000
  • Manufacturers Paintwork Guarantee - Years: 3
  • Manufacturers Corrosion Perforation Guarantee - Years: 12
  • Special Edition: False
  • Special Order: False
  • Based On ID: N
  • Insurance Group 1 - 50 Effective January 07: 26E
  • Coin Series: GTE
  • Coin Description: TSI

  • Engine Torque - MKG: 25.5
  • Engine Power - BHP: 218
  • Engine Power - PS: True
  • 0 to 60 mph (secs): False
  • 0 to 62 mph (secs): 7.6
  • Top Speed: 138
  • Engine Power - KW: 160
  • Engine Torque - LBS.FT: 184
  • Engine Torque - NM: 250
  • Engine Torque - RPM: 1550

  • Emissions Test Cycle: WLTP

  • Tyre Size Front: 215/55 R17
  • Wheel Style: NIVELLE
  • Alloys?: True
  • Space Saver?: False
  • Tyre Size Rear: 215/55 R17
  • Tyre Size Spare: TYRE REPAIR KIT
  • Wheel Type: 17" ALLOY

  • Width (including mirrors): 2083
  • Height: 1521
  • Height (including roof rails): N
  • Length: 4773
  • Width: N
  • Wheelbase: 2786

  • Minimum Kerbweight: 1685
  • Gross Vehicle Weight: 2260
  • Fuel Tank Capacity (Litres): 50
  • Max. Towing Weight - Braked: 1600
  • Max. Towing Weight - Unbraked: 750
  • Max. Loading Weight: 575
  • Luggage Capacity (Seats Up): 650
  • No. of Seats: 5
  • Luggage Capacity (Seats Down): 1780
  • Turning Circle - Kerb to Kerb: 11.7

  • ESC (Electronic stability control) + EDL (Electronic Differential lock) and ASR (Traction control), EDTC (Engine drag torque control): Included

  • Rubber boot mat: £50

  • Dynamic chassis control: £920
  • Standard suspension: Included

  • Rear view camera: £345
  • Park assist steering with front/rear parking sensors: £215
  • Area view: £835
  • Trailer assist steering with park assist: £515
  • Front and rear ultrasonic parking sensors, audible with audio volume reduction when activated + optical parking display via vehicles infotain system: Included

  • Remote tailgate unlocking: Included

  • Head up Display: £540

  • Pearlescent paint: £640
  • Solid paint: Included
  • Metallic paint: £640
  • Special solid paint: £390
  • Electric panoramic sunroof, glass sliding/tilting including integrated roller blind: £1,000

  • IQ.LED matrix headlights with dynamic curve + light assist, LED daytime running lights, front fog lights with static cornering, animated indicator: £1,700
  • Unique C signature GTE front LED daytime running lights in bumper: Included
  • All LED headlights range adjustable with reflector technology + indicator function: Included

  • Mistral grey roof lining: Included
  • Black roof lining: £245
  • Luggage net: £70

  • Ambient lighting plus pack - Passat: £265
  • Discover navigation pro pack - Passat: £2,200
  • Discover navigation pack - Passat: Included
  • Easy open package with full electric tailgate/ boot - Passat (Estate): £600
  • Blue ambient lighting pack - Passat: Included

  • Metallic - Manganese grey: £640
  • Metallic - Reflex silver: £640

  • Pearl - Deep black: £640

  • Solid - Urano grey: £0

  • Special solid - Pure white: £390
  • Special solid - Tornado red: £390

  • Digital key: £215
  • Tyre pressure monitoring system (TPMS): £150

  • Keyless entry system including start/stop button on centre console: £430
  • Remote central locking with 2 remote folding keys: Included

  • Towbar with electric swivel function: £950

  • XDS electronic differential lock: £205

  • Vienna leather upholstery - Mistral grey + heated front seats + heated windscreen washer jets: £0
  • Vienna leather upholstery - Titan black + heated front seats + heated windscreen washer jets: £0

  • 17" Nivelle black alloy wheels with self sealing tyres and low rolling resistance tyres + anti-theft wheel bolts: Included
  • 18" Oxford alloy wheels with low rolling resistance tyres + anti-theft wheel bolts: £600
  • 18" Liverpool alloy wheels with low rolling resistance tyres + anti-theft wheel bolts: £600

  • Tyre mobility kit: Included
  • Space saver spare wheel: £0

Whilst every effort is made to verify and ensure the accuracy of the data, the information should only be used as a guide and no purchasing decision should be made without verification of the data from either the manufacturer or franchised dealer. Our offers may be on a different model year to that represented by this data and so specification may differ accordingly.

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