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Volkswagen Passat 1.5 TSI R-Line 5dr DSG

  • Automatic
  • Petrol
  • 50 mpg
  • 5 door estate
  • 129 g/km CO2
  • 129 g/km CO2 emissions
  • 50 mpg Fuel efficiency
  • 9.2 secs 0 to 62 mph
  • 150 bhp Engine power

Ten Second Review

The ninth generation Volkswagen Passat comes only as an estate, with a more spacious interior and a premium-style cabin. There's a more sophisticated MQB Evo platform, a new era of media connectivity and the option of a PHEV powertrain that might encourage you to put off that switch to EV.


Mindful of European government and consumer indecision when it comes to the impending switch to EVs, Volkswagen has granted a stay of execution to its traditional combustion model lines. Which is why we still have a Golf as well as an ID.3, a Tiguan as well as an ID.4 and, as in this case, a Passat alongside an ID 7. The brand can't continue to invest in development of the old badges as it once did though, which is why this ninth generation Passat shares everything under the skin with the fourth generation Skoda Superb that's built alongside it at VW's plant in Bratislava, Slovakia. It also has something to do with the fact that you can only now have your Passat as an estate. You can see why Volkswagen was unwilling to let the Passat nameplate go just yet. A part of the company's line-up since 1973, it's racked up over 30 million sales. Though its days of big production volumes are over, there's still plenty here to please model line loyalists in this, the largest Passat yet.

Driving Experience

Quite a bit's new in the apparently familiar powerplant line-up, but the key engineering change for this MK9 Passat is its MQB Evo platform, shared with the MK3 Tiguan. It's a key contributor to this B9-series model's newfound 'big car' feel - and has been engineered to take a full-EV powertrain, though there's no sign of that just yet. Surprisingly, Volkswagen is no longer offering the 2.0-litre TDI diesel that was the default choice of most customers in the previous generation. There's no 4MOTION 4WD option either, though both of these things are still available in other markets. Instead, your Passat will have to come with a 1.5-litre petrol engine: either there's a conventional 48V mild hybrid eTSI model with 150PS. Or the same engine provides the basis for a couple of PHEV variants with either 204PS or 272PS. These use a much bigger 19.7kWh battery than the old Passat PHEV, hence a considerably increased EV driving range of up to 82 miles. Still want that diesel? All eTSI Passats must have 7-speed DSG auto transmission; there's a 6-speed DSG auto in the eHybrids. To improve handling, Volkswagen has fitted the Vehicle Dynamics Manager system originally developed for the Golf GTI, which allows wheel-specific braking interventions by the electronic stability control and wheel-selective adjustment of the dampers. One of the benefits of this is greater differentiation between the various driving modes. Which are used for the optional (and now much improved) adaptive damping system, now called 'Dynamic Chassis Control Pro'. This includes clever twin-valve dampers which better absorb bumps thanks to more controlled rebound properties that make the ride almost limo-like.

Design and Build

Space is what this ninth generation Passat is all about. For the first time in this model line's history, it's only available as an estate - a station wagon that's significantly bigger than its predecessor. The 4,917mm length is 144mm longer than before, plus the car is 20mm wider (1,852mm). To disguise these quite prodigious dimensions and try and make the car look a little less boxy, Volkswagen has reduced roof height by 10mm (1,506mm). There's a deeper front bumper and wheel sizes are up to 19-inches. The long, low look has improved the drag factor to 0.25Cd. Up-front inside, there's a heavily restyled dashboard with a 10.3-inch instrument screen and a separated 12.9-inch infotainment monitor (upgraded to 15.0-inches as an option). The centre screen runs the brand's latest MIB4 software, with its smarter menu structures, higher resolution graphics, a permanent climate control bar and conversational voice control. The slider controls for volume and temperature are carried over but are now back-lit; the gear selector has been moved up to the steering column where the steering wheel now has physical buttons; an arty dashboard panel is enhanced by night-time ambient lighting; and there's a higher feeling of perceived quality. You get more cabin storage space too. Perhaps the biggest cabin change though, is in rear seat legroom. The wheelbase length is up by 50mm and leg space at the back has increased by exactly that amount. It really is palatial now in the rear. Luggage capacity is up by 40-litres to 690-litres (which falls to 530-litres on PHEV versions). With everything folded, there's 1,920-litres of space with the 1.5 eTSI variants, 140-litres more than previously.

Market and Model

At the time of launch and of our test in Summer 2024, Volkswagen was asking from around £39,000 for this ninth generation Passat; that's for the base 1.5 TSI 150PS version. As we compiled this Review, the eHybrid PHEV variants were starting from around £44,000. This time round, as we've said elsewhere in this test, there's just this single estate body style. There's a choice of three trim levels - 'Life', 'Elegance' or top 'R-Line' and as you'd now expect, it's an auto-only line-up. Customers for the eHybrid prepared to avoid base trim will be offered the option of finding £2,000 more to go from the 204PS to the uprated 272PS version of that drivetrain. As for standard kit, well expect to find LED headlamps with range control, roof rails, a powered tailgate with a power-operated luggage compartment cover, heat-insulating glass, LED tail lamps, powered-folding heated mirrors, an alarm, all-round parking sensors, auto headlamps and wipers and a very complete portfolio of camera safety kit including High Beam Assist. Inside with all Passats, you get Volkswagen's 'Digital Cockpit Pro' 10.25-inch instrument screen, and a 12.9-inch central infotainment display incorporating 'Apple CarPlay' and 'Android Auto', an 8-speaker DAB audio system and Volkswagen's wireless 'App-Connect' set-up allowing you to interact with the car via your smartphone. Plus there's heated front 'comfort'-spec seats with a 3-point massage system, the brand's 'Air Care Climatronic' air conditioning system with a rear control panel, an auto-dimming rear view mirror, manual sun blinds for the rear side windows and a rear view camera. Plus drive assist features include a Car2X intelligent vehicle networking, a 'Park Assist' system that can memorise frequently-visited spaces and steer you into them and 'ACC' 'Adaptive Cruise Control'. 'ACC' allows for the standard fitment of the brand's 'Travel Assist' with Lane Assist semi-autonomous driving set-up, a camera and radar sensor-controlled assistance system that will autonomously accelerate, brake and steer your Passat while maintaining a safe distance to vehicles ahead.

Cost of Ownership

The economy figures aren't too much different from before. Which means that if you opt for the base eTSI petrol 1.5-litre petrol variants, you're looking 52.3mpg on the combined cycle and 134g/km of CO2. The mild hybrid comes with Active Cylinder Management (ACTplus), which deactivates the TSI engine when conditions allow, enabling the Passat to coast along with zero tailpipe emissions. As we told you in our 'Driving' section, the PHEV eHybrid models (which are WLTP-rated at up to 706.2mpg on the combined cycle and up to 8g/km of CO2) are capable of up to around 82 miles of range before you need to use fossil fuel. Volkswagen reckons that will allow many families to use this car as an EV, given German market research suggesting that 95% of journeys are less than 31 miles long and 99% are shorter than 82 miles. The brand claims that with petrol and electric power sources combined, the Passat eHybrid's range would stretch to over 620 miles. The PHEV battery now supports DC charging at up to 50kW - which is much faster than the old-shape Passat GTE, which was limited to just 3.6kW AC charging. That means a 10 to 80% battery top up will take around 25 minutes, while a new 11kW on-board charger allows full home battery replenishment to take as little as 2 hours. As for servicing across the range, well as usual with Volkswagen models, there's a choice of either 'Fixed' or 'Flexible' maintenance packages. You'll choose the 'Fixed' approach if you cover less than 10,000 miles a year and with this, the car will typically be looked at every twelve months. If your daily commute is more than 25 miles and your Passat will regularly be driven on longer distance journeys, you'll be able to work with a 'Flexible' regime that can see you travelling up to 18,000 miles between garage visits - or every two years, whichever is sooner. And warranties? Well the standard package is three years and 60,000 miles.


If you've ever thought that a combination of Skoda space and practicality and Volkswagen class and quality would be ideal, then you'll like this ninth generation Passat very much. Under the skin, the fact that it's really more Skoda than Volkswagen is indicative of the way the Czech brand took the lead in the essential development of this B9-series design. But it's been packaged in a way that the Passat model line's loyal customers should like. And offers a level of cabin space that will impress them very much. A few will be disappointed that you can no longer have a Passat saloon. But the estate is the variant most would have chosen anyway. In a changing world, there's a reassuring sense of constancy about a Passat. Yes, it too has changed. But not beyond recognition.

  • Full electric tailgate operation
  • Body colour bumpers
  • Body colour door handles
  • Rear side wing doors
  • Brushed stainless steel pedals
  • Luggage compartment cover, power operated
  • Rear centre armrest
  • Sunblind for rear side windows
  • Acoustics pack - Passat Estate
  • LED High matrix headlamps pack - Passat
  • 3x3 point rear seat belts
  • Driver/Front Passenger airbags
  • Drivers knee airbag
  • Extended safety system with proactive passenger protection system
  • Front passenger airbag deactivation switch
  • Tyre pressure loss indicator
  • Warning triangle and first aid kit
  • Alarm with interior protection
  • Electronic engine immobiliser
  • Keyless locking and starting system keyless access with safelock
  • HC+NOx: N
  • Particles: N
  • Standard Euro Emissions: EURO 6
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Comb: 129
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Comb - TEH: 135
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Comb - TEL: 128
  • Camshaft: DOHC
  • Catalytic Convertor: True
  • CC: 1498
  • Cylinder Layout: IN-LINE
  • Engine Code: CJ55DZ
  • Engine Layout: FRONT TRANSVERSE
  • Gears: 7 SPEED
  • Transmission: SEMI-AUTO
  • EC Directive 1999/100/EC Applies: False
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb: 5.7
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb - TEH: 5.9
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb - TEL: 5.6
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Extra High - TEH: 6
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Extra High - TEL: 5.7
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - High - TEH: 5.1
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - High - TEL: 4.8
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Low - TEH: 7.9
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Low - TEL: 7.5
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Medium - TEH: 5.9
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Medium - TEL: 5.5
  • WLTP - MPG - Comb: 50
  • WLTP - MPG - Comb - TEH: 47.9
  • WLTP - MPG - Comb - TEL: 50.4
  • WLTP - MPG - Extra High - TEH: 47.1
  • WLTP - MPG - Extra High - TEL: 49.2
  • WLTP - MPG - High - TEH: 55.4
  • WLTP - MPG - High - TEL: 58.9
  • WLTP - MPG - Low - TEH: 35.8
  • WLTP - MPG - Low - TEL: 37.7
  • WLTP - MPG - Medium - TEH: 47.9
  • WLTP - MPG - Medium - TEL: 51.4
  • Alternative Fuel Qualifying: False
  • Badge Engine CC: 1.5
  • Badge Power: 150
  • Based On ID: N
  • Coin Description: TSI
  • Coin Series: R-Line
  • Generation Mark: 7
  • Insurance Group 1 - 50 Effective January 07: 32E
  • Man Corrosion Perforation Guarantee - Years: 12
  • Manufacturers Paintwork Guarantee - Years: 3
  • Safety Concerns: False
  • Service Interval Frequency - Months: 12
  • Service Interval Mileage: 9300
  • Special Edition: False
  • Special Order: False
  • Standard manufacturers warranty - Mileage: 60000
  • Standard manufacturers warranty - Years: 3
  • Vehicle Homologation Class: M1
  • 0 to 62 mph (secs): 9.2
  • Engine Power - BHP: 150
  • Engine Power - KW: 110
  • Engine Power - PS: True
  • Engine Torque - LBS.FT: 184
  • Engine Torque - MKG: 25.5
  • Engine Torque - NM: 250
  • Engine Torque - RPM: 1500
  • Top Speed: 138
  • Emissions Test Cycle: WLTP
  • RDE Certification Level: RDE 2
  • Alloys: True
  • Space Saver: False
  • Tyre Size Front: 235/45 R18
  • Tyre Size Rear: 235/45 R18
  • Tyre Size Spare: TYRE REPAIR KIT
  • Wheel Style: COVENTRY
  • Wheel Type: 18" ALLOY
  • Height: 1497
  • Length: 4917
  • Wheelbase: 2841
  • Width: 1849
  • Fuel Tank Capacity (Litres): 66
  • Gross Vehicle Weight: 2130
  • Luggage Capacity (Seats Up): 690
  • Max. Loading Weight: 633
  • Max. Roof Load: 100
  • Max. Towing Weight - Braked: 1600
  • Max. Towing Weight - Unbraked: 750
  • Minimum Kerbweight: 1497
  • No. of Seats: 5
  • Turning Circle - Kerb to Kerb: 12