The 2018 Volkswagen Passat keeps true to the look that it has seen in its current generation, with only a few notable changes for the new model year. A new GT trim is now available with 19-inch alloy wheels, 2-tone leatherette seats, R-Line front and rear bumpers, grille accents, GT badging and a 280 horsepower V6 engine. Also for 2018, the 1.8L engine is replaced with a 2.0L turbo 4-cylinder as its base model engine. The warranty has been lengthened to 6-years or 72,000 miles.
The 2018 Volkswagen Passat is offered in six trim levels; S, R-Line, SE, SE with Technology, GT and SEL Premium. Within these options, there is a choice of two engine options, the new 2.0T and a 3.6L V6. The turbocharged 2.0L TSI (2.0T) 4-cylinder engine makes 174 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque, while providing an EPA estimated 36-highway mpg. The 3.6L V6 engine delivers 280 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque, achieving an estimated 28-highway mpg. Regardless of engine choice, both are paired with a 6-speed automatic transmission and both front-wheel drive.
The Passat base S trim with the turbocharged 2.0T engine comes with standard 16-inch alloy wheels, keyless entry, power adjustable driver seat, automatic headlights, 5-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Bluetooth technology.
The R-Line trim, also with the 2.0T engine, adds some sporty features to the Passat including 19-inch alloy wheels, R-Line sport bumpers, side skirts and badging. Inside features include dual-zone climate control, steering wheel paddle shifters, leatherette heated seats with a power driver's seat, a 6.3-inch touchscreen and R-Line interior trim. Some of the added safety features include blind spot monitoring, rear traffic alert and forward collision warning with brake assist.
Moving to the SE, standard features include 17-inch alloy wheels, keyless entry with push-button start, adaptive cruise control, power sunroof, wood and aluminum interior trim, leatherette heated seats with a power driver's seat, 6.3-inch touchscreen and a rearview camera. The SE also includes the safety features seen in the R-Line trim. The SE with Technology trim adds several more technology and convenience features including parking distance control, rain-sensing windshield wiper, remote start, heated rear seats and a navigation system.
The GT trim, which is new for 2018, brings a sportier look and feel to the Passat and is powered by the 3.6L V6 engine. Standard features include 19-inch wheels, a sport-tuned suspension, double exhaust, two-tone leatherette comfort sport seats, R-Line front and rear bumpers, red grille accents and GT badging. The GT style and performance brings a little more fun to the Passat sedan.
SEL models bring a much more upscale look and feel, with interior ambient lighting, leather seats, heated front and rear seats, power adjustable front seats, LED headlights and taillights, a Fender premium audio system and dual-zone climate control. For the SEL trim, the 2.0T 4-cylinder comes standard with the 3.6L V6 optional if additional power is desired.
All Passat models include six standard airbags, including side-curtain airbags that cover front and rear occupants, plus standard electronic stability control, anti-lock brakes and hydraulic brake assist. Available advanced safety technologies include a lane departure warning, frontal collision warning with emergency braking and a blind-spot monitor.