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Volkswagen Passat 2006+

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Comments

  • Sometimes this is simply called stiffness -- and when it relates as it usually does to a car it relates to the stiffness of the chassis.

     

    The stiffer the chassis (the more torsionally rigid), the better the ride and handling.

     

    A high resistance to twisting forces generally will yield a better handing and riding car (all other things being equal) -- the worst of all possible worlds is low torsional rigidity coupled with stiff shocks and springs. The vehicle will ride stiffly and handle poorly.

     

    With a stiff chassis, the springs and shocks can actually work together with the rigidity to improve the ride and handling characteristics.

     

    A car that is very rigid will not twist as much as one that is less so.

     

    Imagine putting your car into two vice grips, one on the front end and one on the back and then rotate the front vice grip clockwise and the the rear vice grip counter clockwise -- the car would begin to twist like a pretzel.

     

    The new Passat being stiffer than the old one simply means it will take much more force to twist the chassis -- the car will remain "stable" -- it will take corners better and there will be less ride degredation with the stiffer chassis.
  • ivan_99ivan_99 Posts: 1,669
    Interesting description.

     

    So…is the Golf stiffer than the A6?
  • Beats me. My guess is that the new A6, claiming to be the stiffest A6 yet, is stiffer than the Golf.

     

    I am guessing only, so give me a break if I am wrong.
  • ivan_99ivan_99 Posts: 1,669
    Perhaps the 2.0T.

     

    I see the 3.6L competing against Acura and Infinity (Japanese competition).

     

    Particularly the TL, if you look at the paper-specs, the new Passat will offer all the tech goodies (and others the TL does not), with a wheel base and width lass than an inch apart. They both could be optioned with 6spds and FWD (and 6spd auto, and AWD, on the VW).

     

    The prices should come in around the same (comparably equipped), low – mid 30’s and the Passat will have a slight hp advantage (and probably a big power advantage due to the larger displacement and direct injection).

     

    Without gushing too much over a car nobody has driven yet, I’m quite taken by it. Seems like a worthy replacement for a fine auto.
  • bjbird2bjbird2 Posts: 647
    I think the new Passat will be another benchmark for the competition to start reverse engineering all over again.
  • While many more people on the vwvortex site like the passat redesign over the jetta redesign (too much like the corolla), they are still moaning about how unoriginal the design is - Audi grill, BMW Z4 tail lights, BMW c pillar, Bangle wanna-be, etc. And this is coming from enthusiasts.

     

    I personally love the new design, but not what it stands for - a move into the luxury market for the Peoples car. I say leave the luxury market for Audi and let VW be the Peoples Car.

     

    I know - "buy a jetta if you can't afford a Passat"...Great! And people wonder why VW has been losing loyal customers to Subaru...unique, well built (better than domestic) driving-centered vehicles. But even sube is going upscale. Soon there will be no vehicles under $25K sold worth buying.

     

    Give me a TDI DSG Variant, please. With Cloth. And keep it under $25K. OK, rant over.
  • . . .enemies: Here goes.

     

    I see a trend, and as the man (Robert) said, "you don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows [sic]." The trend is move everything (automotive) UP. Up horsepower, up luxury, up torque, up # of gears, up the number of devices that are power actuated -- we're movin' on up to a deluxe apartment in the sky - i.

     

    I don't care if you are Subaru or VW or Toyota or Chrysler or GMC trucks -- you are movin' up up up.

     

    Capitalism likes profit. Indeed, Capitalism needs profit like a dog needs a bone, a junkie needs -- well you get the picture.

     

    In theory (the Phaeton kinda shoots a few holes in this from an actual rather than theoretical viewpoint) luxury items have higher gross margins than non luxury items. Cars are always and have always been more profitable when they're loaded with options, luxury touches, wood over metal, leather over cloth (although there is a practical consideration for leather, another time).

     

    Moving the cars up is, say it: "good for profit."

     

    Strippies (base models, if many base models can survive) don't cut it. Strippies don't have the same gross margins as fully-loaded (and fully horsepowered) versions.

     

    Pluralism (economic, social, political, educational -- whatever) basically can be looked at (from some number of feet above "ground") as compartmentalization into 2. In this case two classes (of buyers).

     

    Here is my theory, by A Elk, Anne Elk, ahem:

     

    with the rapidity of glacial movement or the rusting of chrome (which is to say not fast but fast enough to be noticed) virtually all cars are moving to the highest possible level "their market will withstand, sustain, etc." So the Passat will become essentially an Audi A5 -- re-read the announcement about it, the thing is well equipped and ups the ante on just about everything.

     

    The "peoples car" will come in two flavors -- both of them will be "upscale" and up everything else mentioned above.

     

    One flavor will be "the next" which will become the current, which will become yesterday's (or last year's news). The other flavor will be the outgoing and "the one before."

     

    Oh yea, one will be new, one will be used.

     

    The push of CPO'd cars [by many manufacturers] is at least superficial evidence of this. It only makes sense. Build the high margin cars, almost exclusively and sell them twice: once new and once CPO'd.

     

    The "people's car" will be a "pre-owned" less than 3 model year old (and/or previous generation) version of a near-premium to premium marquis. The mainstream car does not have to have a cloth interior or lack a power rear sunshade or heated front and rear seats and parktronic and full-screen moving map GPS -- the mainstream VW or Audi or Volvo or Toyota will move up up up up up until one could imagine it will bump into the some limit -- evenutally. Thus far automakers seem to operate under the same law as Intel (Moore's Law the doubling of transistors every couple of years, has been maintained, and still holds true today -- my theory is an adaptation of Moore's since I am relating it to cars, not transistors): the features and functions and new stuff that can be put into a car will double with every new generation of the car and the price will not rise anywhere near the same rate. The opposite of incrementalism as I see it is what the automakers are attempting.

     

    Ultimately, we will have "new Cadillacs" and "not-new (previously owned) Cadillacs." If you want to have a new car -- you have to be able to pony up der dough.

     

    If you don't have der dough, you can have a two year old version of the "new Cadillac" for 1/3 less (or more than 1/3 less) than new. You won't have ALL the new features (new for 15 minutes) but you won't pay for them either.

     

    If you want a Passat, methinks, you can either buy the latest and greatest which will move up in all ways, including price; or, you can buy (or lease) a CPO'd version.

     

    Capitalism more or less, plain and simple.

     

    "Ahem, my theory is that brontosauruses start out very skinny on one end grow to have a huge middle and end skinny on the other end." A. Elk (Anne, not "a") Elk.

     

    Are you a "new" capitalist or a CPO'd one?

     

    Your under $25K car will simply be called a 2002, while your current car will be called a 2006 -- and will cost $40K. But wait a couple of years and your 2006 will drop to under $25K.

     

    Drive it like you live!
  • ivan_99ivan_99 Posts: 1,669
    And...there will be stripper versions, I recall the older A6 2000 or so, could be had with cloth, but it was hard to find.

     

    I think this way manufactures could publish the “starting at xx,xxx MSRP”, even if they equip very few this way.

     

    Stripper version: Not many cars are really "stripper" versions anymore, as they are in Europe, you can bet a base Passat will have a large array of standard features; ABS, PW, PM, Cruise, CD, AC. Remote etc.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    "Strippies (base models, if many base models can survive) don't cut it. Strippies don't have the same gross margins as fully-loaded (and fully horsepowered) versions."

     

    What is good for a car company is not neccessarily good for the customer, especially his pocketbook.

     

    Every car I bought is a stripper version and I had no problems in ordering them.

     

    Would rather buy a stripper Passat versus a loaded Honda. Similarily that is what I did when I bought my 99 bmw 323i(cloth seats and would not exchange it for leather---cloth is better for the back and enhances the sporty image of the car).

     

    My next car will most likely be a base bmw 325xi Touring with cloth seats. And I can assure you I will be spending less than many who buy fully loaded vehicles with subpar performance/handling in comparison to a BMW.

     

    My theory is this! The more options(especially electrical/electronic), the more likely you will set yourself up for reliability problems and aggravation(especially if you buy a VW)

     

    Remember that old Honda slogan: "Honda, we keep it simple". Those words define the virtues of owning a strippie vehicle.
  • If and I do say "if" my theory is correct it will become increasingly less likely that there will be strippie models. This will not happen next year -- I am not suggesting anything like that.

     

    And, if someone wants to order a brand new XYZ at the base level -- whatever that is at the time -- I applaud your patience. I too order virtually all of my cars.

     

    As recently as the 90's, my Audi dealer told me that more than 50% of the cars he sold were special ordered and that the customer did not test drive the cars before they bought them.

     

    Times have changed.

     

    Virtually all of the cars I have seen (Chrysler, Acura and Audi) in the models I am considering (note there are NO AWD Chrysler's YET, so I am only speaking of the 300C's) come fully loaded or are commonly sold that way.

     

    The RL, for instance, has virtually NO options.

     

    The trend is up, that is all I am saying.

     

    A co worker of mine claims to always buy a car about 1 model year old with about 10,000 miles on it for a healthy discount plus about $10,000 off the top (the dollar a mile rule, so he claims, is ineffect for the first year).

     

    He purchased, in 2002, a pristine Aurora, model year 2001 -- a premium American car. He paid, as noted over $10,000 off the sticker, got both a full warranty and an extension. Now at 55,000 miles, he says the shopping for the new used car begins.

     

    If the new Passat comes to our shores (US) fundamentally fully loaded, I do not doubt there will some version that is considered "base" but it will hardly be a strippie.

     

    I know that in Germany a new A6 can be stripped to almost austere or stoic levels of appointments -- and may be used as a taxi-cab.

     

    However, here in the US, the base A6 3.2 is very far up the pecking order of what could be had if one lived, for instance, in Munich.

     

    At this point, the ONLY way to get an A6 without the Premium pack, is, as you say, to special order it. If you intend to buy and keep it for 3 to 4 years, it will be somewhat more difficult to trade in for the reasons my theory suggests.

     

    I am not saying any of this as "what ought or ought not" to be -- I am (or was) attempting to make an observation.

     

    Heck, I could be wrong, I often am -- but I am NEVER uncertain (that's meant to be a joke!)

     

    It's jus' my 'pinion.

     

    Merry Christmas and happy holidays to all.
  • todd53todd53 Posts: 47
    I think you are over-analyzing this. Of course the automobile industry (along with every other industry) is upping the ante on everything with each coming year. If they didn't, everyone would still be driving Model Ts. Besides, it is a fact that an overwhelming percentage of the car-buying population wants a well-equipped if not "fully-loaded" vehicle. I think that can be attributed to human nature and the American dream. The car manufacturers are simply satisfying consumer demand. I mean, you never hear of anyone specifying a new home with no crown molding, no walk-in closets, no modern appliances, etc. By and large, the consumer wants more and they are obviously willing to pay for it. But if you insist on a "srtippie" car, there are still plenty of choices out there, i.e. Suzuki, Hyundai, Scion, Kia, Saturn and the list goes on. I would have no problem paying $40k for a new Passat if I think it is worth the money.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    "if you insist on a "srtippie" car, there are still plenty of choices out there, i.e. Suzuki, Hyundai, Scion, Kia, Saturn"

     

    What Markcincinat and todd53 wrote are facts. Many consumers are willing to pay for options. I am not disagreeing with that.

     

    What I am disagreeing with is the above statement by todd53. When I talk about strippie cars, I am talking about premium performance cars(Porsches and BMWs are renowoned in providing strippie base cars and charging hefty amounts for options) .

     

    Basically what I am saying is that with a limited budget I would prefer to drive a base BMW than a loaded Honda or Toyota with all the bells and whistles. I would prefer to drive a base Accord 4cyl. versus a loaded Civic. A base Passat versus a loaded Jetta.

     

    My views may be among a minority, but I know quite a few who do share my views. IMO most options are frivolous and an excuse for automakers to exploit our weaknesses by charging heftier prices. IMO a spartan higher model is far more tempting than a lower model loaded with gizmos.

     

    Many automakers would go bankrupt if everyone shared my views. Fortunately most do not and there are still profits to be made in auto manufacturing.

     

     "would have no problem paying $40k for a new Passat if I think it is worth the money. "

     

    Cant argue with you what a car is worth. There will be quite a few who think that a loaded Passat is worth 40k.

    Unfortunately the market may not respond the same way as a small cirlce of devoted VW Passat fans.
  • Automobile is a mature industry so there are many players and many choices, enough to choose a new car starting as low as $7,500 to $75,000 or used starting as low as $2,500 to $50,000 (range covers 98% of models). Consumers have the choice (depending on their budget, interest and priority) to buy a used Lexus 430 or new Lexus 300 base or a fully loaded Camry with Navigation system for about the same cost. So, I don't see any fundamental change happening in Auto industry. Features that were considered luxury 10 years back are now standard, but the same was true 10, 20, 30, 40...years back. Almost all cars sold in USA in 2010 will have built-in Navigation system, curtain air bags, automatic climate control etc. If anything, it feels that the pace of change (or the pace of prosperity rate) has increased but that’s because most of the new changes are electronics.
  • I fundamentally agree with the preceding few posts. This kind of started with the statement that was made "HOPING" that there would still be some Passats (as far as I can recall, that was the hope) that would be available for less money. Here in the US, I suspect (as I noted above)the Germans are finding it more difficult to bring lower priced cars to market.

     

    I saw on CNBC the story that discussed overall sales figures and so-called luxury items. The luxury items sales are going like gangbusters. Whereas the lower priced items are still struggling.

     

    Economic pluralsim at work.

     

    Surely we will not "evolve" to a two class society (unless it is the haves and have more) -- but we may reach a point where some of us may HAVE to choose between a new or used Passat or a used Passat or a new Geo Metro (hopefully things will not move that far apart, but who knows).

     

    Using myself as an example, maybe even some sort of a representative, I can see I may be pushed into "lesser" models of a given line. But that is because I am making a choice, at age 53, to cap my auto budget -- and at this moment in time, that means $50,000 period.

     

    I found myself in 1997 buying an A8, then in 2000 an A6 4.2, then a 2001 A6 4.2 and now an alload. The allroad as I equipped it was at the $49999 MRSP.

     

    My point is to agree in significant measure that my choices used to feel unlimited, now they have narrowed -- either by life expectancy, economy or priorities.

     

    Other folks may be on the upswing (car manufacturers certainly seem to be planning on that).

     

    Perhaps VW, Audi, and some other European models exported to the US have come to the conclusion that they cannot compete at the "low end." The next entry level cars, so my clients Honda and Toyota imagine, will come from Korea (and maybe China -- but that is a little more in the future.

     

    Those of us who have long term admiration and affection for VW for example, may soon find a paucity of low-end, low-priced people's cars (new).

     

    We will make our decisions when the time comes -- the next Passat seems poised to make another step up market for VW.

     

    Maybe the detractors have been right, the Phaeton is not the wrong car or the wrong price, it is just the wrong time (a bit too early).
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    "The luxury items sales are going like gangbusters. Whereas the lower priced items are still struggling"

     

    The reason luxury cars are selling like gangbusters is that their PRICES have hardly moved with inflation these past years. Compare the list price of a Lexus GS from almost 10 years ago(hardly any difference) . MY BMW 323 I bought, the prices increased quite minimally these past 6 years.

     

    In fact I remember in 1987 my father was interested in a MB E300. If you look at the list prices today for a MBe320, the prices are almost identical to what it was 17 years ago. 17 years of inflation(87-04) had hardly had any affect of prices.

     

    Also for the REAL LUXURY cars like Rolls Royce and Maybach: these two marques are suffering with sales far below expectations. Sort of like same story with the Phaeton.

     

    So the bottom line is that the success of luxury cars are dependent on pricing, just like pricing plays a big role in the lower end of the market.
  • Dewey, I think Markcincinnati is making similar point. Car market is going upscale, because prices haven't changed much so people can afford more car per car then ever before. In other words, since the price of MB E300 has remained the same, there is higher sale of MB E300s, considerably more then what could be anticipated by average population growth. In other words, there is more prosperity now then there was 10 years back.

     

    Just like housing or computer or any other market. Bigger house for the same 30% monthly income, more computers, perhaps equivalent of one hundred Maybachs, compare to what you could buy 10 years back!

     

    I enjoy reading this forum. On the other hand, despite all the problems I had with the existing one, I hope to give it another try to a new Passat in Dec 2006.

     

    Can it be concluded that world is more prosper now then was ever before?

     

    Cheers and Happy holidays!
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    "Dewey, I think Markcincinnati is making similar point"

     

    I know, I was just trying to find a reason for the "Flight to Luxury or Premium Segments of the car market".
  • In addition to the previous 2 posts, the "well equipped" (premium pak, convenience pak, audio pak, heated bun warmer & steering wheel pak, nav pak, and on and on packages, etc.) are not only "more afforable" they are more profitable.
  • Any news on the options for the new jetta/passat...i think vw is way behind in this area. I love the tdi's but bought a new accord v6 240hp, leather, heated seats, dual climate control, voice activated dvd navigation that also controls the heat/air, xm radio etc for 27k.

       

    I am in the market for another new car and would love to go back to a tdi, since i owned a 2000 jetta tdi until about 1 year ago. If im going to shell out the money I expect the dvd nav and keyless start...i read on the passat it will have the keyless start option, but have not read anything on the dvd nav system?
  • corvettecorvette United StatesPosts: 4,116
    You will probably be able to get the options you want, but you will shell out more than 27k for a Passat equipped with only the same features of your Accord. Why did you sell your TDI?
  • maxamillion1maxamillion1 Posts: 1,467
    I expect this new Passat to be a bit more expensive than the current model, which is ALREADY expensive compared to the similarly equipped Altima, Accord and Camry...especially the Accord and Camry models.

     

    Altimas are overpriced in V6 with most options as well.
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    is also more expensive than the roomier Accord. & which Honda product offers something comparable to the new Passat w/ transversely mounted V6 & AWD?
  • Many modern cars have transversely mounted engines, in order to shorten front overhangs, and to reduce front weight bias in FWD vehicles.

     

    Heck, my 1995 Dodge Avenger has a transversely mounted V6...and it was built with the option of AWD (but never acted upon by Chrysler - some have done conversions using 3000gt VR4/stealth parts - check Avenger owners groups).

     

    The most notable exception to engine placement is Subaru...they need to have their engines mounted ahead of the front axle due to the boxer engine design.

     

    Traverse mounted engines are now common on just about all imports. And AWD was once used to distinguish Subaru's from other imports, but is now being thrown on cars to "improve handling", which is not always true, or to reduce torque steer (which plagues side mounted engines).

     

    The Acura (Honda) RL has 300 HP and AWD standard, but $45K. On the other end of the spectrum, the Ford 500 has the V6 and AWD at about $24-28K...and the 3.5 250+ will be available in one year.

     

    My point? A big deal was made about the Passat going to a side mounted engine style earlier this year - because everyone was hoping the front overhang would be shortened greater, yielding a better handling Passat (BMW was once famous for short overhangs). Unfortunately, due to new Euro pedestrian safety standards, the overhang has been made LONGER. This negates the need to even have a side mounted engine! Now that this feature is no longer a "benefit", all that's left is AWD, which has become the auto industry's new gimmick to sell cars. Most AWD systems are simply FWD with additional RWD when needed. Some systems do not even operate above a certain speed limit, making it entirely FWD. This shows that the AWD designers themselves think that FWD is preferred at moderate to higher speeds.

     

    OK, now I'm getting off my soap box. I still have to say, I'll be purchasing a TDI Passat in 1-2 years (either a b6 or pre-owned b5.5), as long as they package the options in a smart way.
  • Although what I am about to write is changing, the "spirit" of this remains true:

     

    Audis and VW's have the best AWD systems. They have over 20 years of experience and have not "recently" added AWD as a marketing ploy or "talking point."

     

    Indeed, this family of cars (the VW group, after all) has produced and marketed AWD way back when there were very few "cars" with AWD -- mainly trucks, in fact.

     

    And, the VW group's AWD cars have been winners in a variety of races -- even banned from some due to the "unfair" performance advantage their AWD equipped cars were said to have over the competition. True Audi and VW have, from time to time, marketed the advantages of all wheels being driven under low coefficient of friction conditions/circumstances; but, largely they present AWD as providing (in no particular order) improved control, performance, fun and safety.

     

    This new Passat with the high zoot upgrades, 280HP and AWD will also, undoubtedly, tout its AWD as making the case for the Passat to be considered moving closer "upscale" to the Premium class.

     

    Much of what has been said about the apparently recent fad of adding AWD to "cars" is accurate. However, the VW group (with the influence of Dr. Piech, in large measure) always presented AWD as a performance differentiator first and a low traction aid second.
  • ivan_99ivan_99 Posts: 1,669
    Partially true.

     

    Remember the BMW you reference is an inline 6...so it's longer than a V6; so they accomplished the short overhand with a "long" engine.

     

    "This negates the need to even have a side mounted engine!"

     

    The Volvo XC90 just introduced a transverse V8 to comply with their own safety standards.

     

    I think the Euro pedestrian safety standard just specifies that the hood of the car has to be a certain number of inches above the engine; therefore creating a “cushion” of space (or I could be making this up...)
  • Yes, VW/Audi/Subaru have all had AWD systems in place for a while. It's the other auto makers who are jumping on the AWD bandwagon that comes to mind when reading my above post.

     

    Volvo, Audi/VW and Subaru all "get it" when when it comes to AWD. They offer AWD in vehicles as an option, for those who need it. Makers like Dodge and Ford are just using it as a gimmick (Do you REALLY need a Hemi? Do you really need an AWD Magnum, especially in 50% of the US that doesn't have the bad climate?). Most people get a false sense of security from AWD. AWD does not equal a quality ESP/traction control system. If you can have both, so much the better. If you can only choose one, go with the ESP. Even AWD will get to the point where wheels slip, even on the best system. People are making the same false assumptions regarding AWD in terms of safety as they did with SUV's. I don't doubt their effectiveness, just the danger that comes with adding a feature which can be both a benefit and a danger, and the uninformed public. Acura is getting dangerously close to this with the new RL, calling it's AWD system the Super Handling AWD (SH-AWD). The best handling system in a car is a competent driver.

     

    As an owner of a true 4WD vehicle, I feel AWD should be treated as an airbag is...you shouldn't even notice it's there (nor would you want to be in a situation that called for it). If you are using it in any situation other than ice/snow, you are beginning to push the car beyond it's limit. You wouldn't want to get into your new Passat and want to try out the air bags by aiming for the nearest tree. Hopefully I have worded this thought correctly.

     

    The BMW reference I made was a counterpoint to the side mounted engine. The BMW has an inline arrangement, but with RWD, allowing weight to be distributed evenly front to back. FWD vehicles try to limit forward bias by mounting engines sideways. This is why BMW has been know to be (one of) the best handling cars.

     

    Lastly, the ped safety rules for europe have several features, like recessed windshield wipers, higher hoods, etc. Look for the Mini Cooper to sport a new nose, wipers and hood soon.
  • bhottlebhottle Posts: 16
    We have an 04 Passat wagon with the W8 and the 6 speed manual transmission. It drives like a dream. Why did VW not push it more in its ads? We have had our wagon for one year now, and it has had absolutely no problems. It goes like hell when I get on the freeway, but it gets 24 mpg on trips if I keep the speed to 75. Will we see a future edition? By the looks of this new model, VW has a sense of direction, but California freeways are made for a W8, not just a V6.
  • ivan_99ivan_99 Posts: 1,669
    No W8. It's now a transverse layout.

     

    The 3.6L V6 is rated at 280hp.
  • The W8 is dead, but the high output V6 appears to be no slouch.

     

    The number of W8 ads = 2. And, as I recall they were run twice each and then pulled.

     

    Now, that's (hopefully) not really true -- but VW NOT running the W8 ads and Audi not promting the allroad -- well, "what were they thinking?"

     

    Frankly, I think the new Passat is a huge step in the right direction.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    "We have had our wagon for one year now, and it has had absolutely no problems."

     

    That is good to hear! Passats are among the most reliable offerings from VW. If the reliability stats improve for the 04/05 Passat models I may consider the new and improved Passat AWD TDI Wagon with a manual tranny--if such a vehicle will exist?

     

    My decision for a car swings like a pendulum. One day I yearn to buy the new BMW e90(3series) xdrive Touring and next day I yearn to drive the new Passat wagon.

     

    The advantage of the Passat is that it has a 3.6l and TDI offering vs. bmw's sole 2.5L on its 3 series Touring.
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