While we’re still left pining over the gorgeous Arteon that’s yet to be launched here, Volkswagen Passenger Cars Malaysia (VPCM) has instead launched the refreshed Passat with a few new tricks up its stylish sleeves.
The sole Passat 2.0TSI Elegance trim boasts some powertrain updates and connectivity toys to go along with a light redesign of the exterior and interior. Under the hood sits the marque’s familiar 2.0-litre TSI turbo-four with 187hp and 320Nm of torque. However, sending that drive to the front is the new seven-speed wet clutch DSG box that makes the Passat the first front-drive model here to receive it.
In the cabin, connectivity has been given a boost with another first for the marque here in the form of its Wireless AppConnect that brings Apple CarPlay to the table. The entire infotainment system is housed in a 9.2-inch touchscreen unit and accommodates voice control, gesture control and a customisable triple-view split screen setup. Completing the connectivity aspect are three USB-C ports and Bluetooth.
Just for the driver is a new 11.7-inch digital instrument cluster with a high-resolution display colour thin-film transistor (TFT) similar to smartphones. Navigation can be displayed in 2D or 3D as part of a six-view customisable screen offering over 30 combinations options.
New materials and design elements bring the non-digital aspect of the cabin up to par. These comprise new door trims, 30-colour ambient lighting and a new leather multi-function steering wheel with ergonomic multifunction buttons.
Leather covers the seats and the driver’s throne gets a little extra in the form of 12-way power adjustability. Triple-zone climate control and powered roll up rear sunshades round up the updates.
A new lighting signature sets this facelift apart from the older version. At the rear, the “Passat” lettering stretched across is new as well. Headlights are LED items while the turn indicators are now sequential front and rear.
Safety has also been given a bump up with the introduction of Side Assist with Rear Cross Traffic Alert that’s capable of a 180-degree detection range of up to 50 metres. The Blind Spot Monitoring System keeps the car secure in its lane with a detection range of up to 70 metres. An added convenience is the new Tyre Pressure Monitoring System.
A given are features such as stability control, ABS, BA, EBD, hill-hold assist, Intelligent Crash Response System (ICRS), Automatic Post-Collision Braking System and Proactive Passenger Protection System.
You can have your Passat in one of the six colours with an option of two finishes. Metallic colours are Aquamarine Blue, Manganese Grey, Reflex Silver and Tamarind Brown with the pearl-effect colours being Deep Black and a new Oryx White. Pearl-effect colours don’t incur a any additional surcharges.
Currently in its eight generation, the Passat will continue to be assembled locally at the DRB Hicom plant in Pekan ever since CKD operations begun there in 2011. No, we didn’t forget the price. That’s RM187,990; recommended. If you're worried about something giving way, there's a five year, unlimited mileage warranty.