2013 Volkswagen Passat


Pros: Low entry price; generous rear legroom; high quality materials used throughout; quiet and comfortable ride, TDI fuel economy.

Cons: Pokey I-5 engine; not as sporty as it used to be; slow throttle response.

The 2013 Volkswagen Passat continues to appeal to many Americans who are searching for a new midsize family sedan. It not only comes with a lower price tag than much of its competition but it also gets three engine options, including the fuel efficient turbo diesel engine.

On the inside, there are a few bits of hard plastics present but overall most surfaces feel soft to the touch. All of the controls are laid out nicely and high quality materials are used throughout. The rear seat and trunk also offer a generous amount of space for both passengers and cargo.  Some may feel that the new Passat is about as bland as a bar of soap, and well, it kind of is but everything about this car is well-thought-out and well-executed.

The Passat offers a smooth ride and refined handling. The standard 2.5-liter engine is a bit pokey but so are most base vehicles with 4-cylinders engines. The available 3.6-liter V6 is most definitely quicker in terms of performance as long as you are willing to sacrifice fuel economy. With the soaring cost of fuel it is worth noting that the TDI® can return up to 43 miles per gallon highway, giving the Passat a range of more than 700 miles.

Body Styles, Trims & Options
The 5-passenger Passat is offered in three trim levels- S, SE and SEL. Each trim is then subdivided by available engines- 2.5L, 3.6L and the fuel efficient turbo diesel.

The base S model is available with the 2.5L 4-cylinder engine only. It comes standard with 16-inch steel wheels, auto headlights, full power accessories, a 60/40 split-folding rear seat, Bluetooth® and a 6-speaker sound system with steering wheel-mounted audio controls, a CD player and an auxiliary audio jack. The S is eligible for the Appearance Package which will add a 6-speed automatic transmission, 16-inch alloy wheels a rear center armrest and vanity mirrors.

The mid-level SE gains 17-inch alloy wheels, heated mirrors, exterior chrome trim pieces, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, a 6-way power adjustable driver’s seat, leatherette vinyl upholstery, heated front seats and a premium 8-speaker sound system with a touchscreen and satellite radio. Optional equipment includes a sunroof and a navigation system.

The 3.6L SE comes standard with the SE’s optional equipment but deletes the navigation system. The TDI® SE is similarly equipped to the gasoline SE however buyers will have the option to add 18-inch alloy wheels and fog lights.

Similar to the SE, the SEL is also available with your choice of a 2.5-liter engine or a 3.6-liter engine. The 2.5L SEL will add a Fender® premium audio system and an upgraded touchscreen navigation system but deletes the fog lights. You can add the SEL Premium Package to get the standard features found on the SE 3.6-liter as noted above. The TDI® SEL is similar to the regular gasoline-powered SEL however it is only available with the Premium Package.

Standard safety equipment includes antilock disc brakes, brake assist, stability and traction control, front and front side thorax airbags,  front/rear side curtain airbags, and a tire pressure monitoring system. All trims also include an Intelligent Crash Response System that will automatically unlock the doors, cut off power to the fuel pump and turn on the hazard lights in the event of a collision.

Warranty Information
Every new 2013 Volkswagen Passat has got you covered with a New Vehicle Limited Warranty for 3 years or 36,000 miles, whichever occurs first. All wear and tear items and/or adjustments are covered for the first 12 months or 12,000 miles. All 2013 models are also covered by a Powertrain Limited Warranty for 5 years or 60,000 miles, a Corrosion Perforation Limited Warranty (excluding the Routan) for 12 years, unlimited miles, 3 year/36,000 mile Roadside Assistance and a 3 year/36,000 mile no-charge scheduled Carefree Maintenance™ Program. Contact your local VW dealer concerning warranty specifics and available protection plans.


Available Trims MSRP
2013 Passat S $20,845
2013 Passat SE $23,945
2013 Passat SEL $23,925
Similar vehicles Base MSRP 
2013 Hyundai Sonata $20,995
2013 Mazda MAZDA6 $20,880
2013 Honda Accord $21,680

Engines, Transmissions, & EPA Rating





Fuel Economy (city/highway)

Passat TDI® SE &TDI® SEL

2.0L, 16-valve, in-line 4-cyl., TDI®


6-Speed Manual Tranismssion


Passat TDI® SE & TDI® SEL

2.0L, 16-valve, in-line 4-cyl., TDI®


6-Speed DSG® Automatic with Tiptronic® & Sport Mode


Passat S, SE & SEL

2.5L, 20-valve, DOHC, in-line 5-cyl.


5-Speed Manual Transmission


Passat S, SE & SEL

2.5L, 20-valve, DOHC, in-line 5-cyl.


6-Speed Automatic with Tiptronic® & Sport Mode


Passat SE V6

3.6L, 24-valve, DOHC, V6


6-Speed DSG® Automatic with Tiptronic® & Sport Mode



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