1.11.2017

Price Control: The 2017 Volkswagen Passat 1.8T SEL Premium

Front 3/4 view of 2017 Volkswagen Passat 1.8T SEL Premium
The 2017 Volkswagen Passat 1.8T SEL Premium.
Challenge:  Find a 2017 car priced only $100 higher than the same car's 2014 model.

You would be looking a long time.  Most cars have had several hundred dollars in price hikes over those four model years (2014-2015-2016-2017).  But the top-of-the-line 2017 Volkswagen Passat 1.8T SEL Premium has a base price of $30,995.  And that is a mere one hundred dollars more than the 2014.



Rear 3/4 view of 2017 Volkswagen Passat 1.8T SEL Premium
2017 Volkswagen Passat 1.8T SEL Premium.
That would be a remarkable bargain even if the 2017 Passat 1.8T SEL Premium had been left untouched for those years, but there have been refinements.  Refreshed front and rear styling last year, forward collision warning and autonomous emergency braking since our review of the 2014 Passat 1.8T SEL Premium, as well as a blind spot monitor and rear cross-traffic alert.  Volkswagen has improved its infotainment systems in the intervening years.  And the 2017 now has the easy-open trunk---giving you the ability to open the trunk hands-free by putting your foot under a specific part of the rear bumper.

2017 Volkswagen Passat 1.8T SEL Premium interior.
What hasn't changed is the Passat 1.8T SEL's overall goodness.  The turbocharged four-cylinder engine is more than adequate in terms of power, and very efficient when it comes to fuel consumption, with an EPA estimate of 23 city/34 highway.  And the SEL is so jam-packed with standard equipment, including 18-inch alloy wheels, LED headlights and taillamps, fog lights, rain-sensing wipers, a power sunroof, dual-zone climate control, leather-trimmed steering wheel, shift knob and brake lever, heated power front seats with leather surfaces, a rear-view camera, navigation and an upgraded Fender audio system, that, apart from a couple of wheel choices and dealer-installed accessories, there aren't really any options.

And that is how our test vehicle came.  As tested, the $820 destination charge brought the total price to $31,815.   That is about two thousand dollars less than the average cost of a new car these days.  And the Volkswagen Passat 1.8T SEL is much more than an average car.

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