2014 Volkswagen Passat Sport Long-Term Update 3
To Sport or not to Sport? Here at Motor Trend the answer is usually always yes — the more sport, the better. While the Passat Sport trim level comes with a bunch of attractive aesthetic extras (Sport badges, a snazzy black roof, deeper two-toned leather seats, imitation carbon-fiber trim, 10-spoke wheels, etc.), its mechanicals haven’t been sportified — no sport suspension, or stiffer anti-roll bars, or sportier gearing.
So how sporty is it? The new 1.8 turbo (it replaced the 2.5L five-cylinder) has 170 horses kicking up 184 lb-ft of torque. It feels peppy enough in city driving. It’s a little buzzy, but the ride is refined and comfy, and the steering is Goldilocks responsive. When in Sport mode — and I always keep it Sport — it chooses the appropriate gear more quickly, as it tends to hunt a bit in the lower gears in regular mode. It also mimics how I’d shift if I were driving a manual. In Motor Trend testing it reached 60 mph in 7.9 seconds and finished the quarter mile in 16.0 at 87.3 mph, appropriate for highway merging and commuting.
My daily driving is 70-percent freeway and 30-percent stop-and-go city streets, and I’ve been getting about 420 miles per tank between fill-ups of the 18.5-gallon tank. (I try to get as close to empty as possible.) It doesn’t need premium gas, which is nice when gas is more expensive. On a recent road trip it clocked 480 miles per tank. The Real MPG of 28.8 is slightly better than the EPA combined city/highway rating of 28.
Fellow MT copy editor Jesse Bishop took the Passat on a weekend road trip to Bishop, California (founded by one of his forebears), and had an odd interlude where the seatbelt sensor beeped repeatedly even though he was belted in and there was no one in the passenger seat. I had a similar instance where I put a wet towel and swimsuit on the passenger seat and the sensor thought a person was there. The beeping stopped when I moved the wet stuff to the floor. I’ll mention it when I take the Passat in for its first service, but it’s not a big deal, and I’d rather have the sensor be too sensitive than not sensitive enough.
As far as car information goes, the Passat owner’s manual is 392 pages long. I love to read — I read for a living — and even I’m not slogging through that. Someone at VW very considerately put together a 32-page “2014 Passat Quick Start Guide” to give owners the instant lowdown on how to set up Bluetooth, audio and nav, cruise control, the windshield wipers, the clock, the manual seats, climate control, and the TMPS, plus how to operate the trunk, VW Car-Net (like OnStar, it connects you to an operator when the airbags are deployed, plus you can summon roadside assistance if you’re in stranded), and the key fob. The booklet is concisely written with helpful photos and covers everything I’ve needed to know so far except how to turn off the automatic beep when I lock the car. For that I did have to crack open the manual.
More on our long-term 2014 Volkswagen Passat Sport:
|2014 Volkswagen Passat Sport|
|PRICE AS TESTED||$28,730|
|VEHICLE LAYOUT||Front-engine, FWD, 5-pass, 4-door sedan|
|ENGINE||1.8L/170-hp/184-lb-ft turbo DOHC 16-valve I-4|
|CURB WEIGHT||3309 lb (59/41%)|
|LENGTH x WIDTH x HEIGHT||191.6 x 72.2 x 58.5 in|
|0-60 MPH||7.9 sec|
|QUARTER MILE||16.0 sec @ 87.3 mph|
|BRAKING, 60-0 MPH||118 ft|
|LATERAL ACCELERATION||0.85 g (avg)|
|MT FIGURE EIGHT||27.0 sec @ 0.64 g (avg)|
|EPA CITY/HWY FUEL ECON||24/34/28 mpg|
|ENERGY CONSUMPTION, CITY/HWY||140/99 kW-hrs/100 miles|
|CO2 EMISSIONS||0.70 lb/mile|
|Service life||8,048 mi|
|Average fuel economy||26.6 mpg|
|CO2 emissions||0.67 lb/mi|
|EPA City/Hwy/Comb Fuel Econ||24/34/28 mpg|
|Real MPG||28.8 mpg|
|Energy consumption||117 kW-hrs/100mi|