2018 Volkswagen Passat

Research, photos, specs, and expertise
6 photos

Volkswagen Passat highlights

Customer rating


  • Comfortable and calm ride
  • Spacious interior and cargo area
  • Potent Fender® audio system


  • Tiny infotainment screen
  • Slow transmission response
  • Weak base engine

Mileage (EPA estimate)

19 city, 28 highway, 22 combined

Pricing for current inventory

(no current inventory)

6 photos

The 2018 Volkswagen Passat gets more power and performance

When the current-generation Volkswagen Passat was last redesigned in 2012, it received praise for its comfortable ride and spacious interior, but it wasn't that fun to drive. For 2018, the lineup receives a welcome injection of excitement with the addition of a sporty new GT trim with a powerful V6 engine and a sport-tuned suspension. The base engine also gets larger, more powerful, and more fuel-efficient.

These improvements help the Passat close in on the class leaders, including the Honda Accord, Kia Optima, and Hyundai Sonata, but it doesn’t quite surpass them. It remains held back by some slow transmission responses, a base engine that’s merely adequate, and the lack of some newer tech features. The 2018 VW Passat can certainly meet expectations for the class, but we think you'll agree that other sedans deliver more performance, features, and value.

All Volkswagen Passat years

What is new for the 2018 Volkswagen Passat?

  • The Passat is available in a new trim called the GT.
  • Passat trims have been upgraded with Rear Spoiler as standard equipment this year.
  • A/C Seat(s) features are now available as options on select trims.
  • The R-Line trim now comes with Automated Cruise Control, Android Auto, and Apple CarPlay as standard equipment.
  • The S trim now comes with Power Seat(s) as standard equipment.

2018 Volkswagen Passat trims

Curious how Volkswagen Passat trims differ? Use our side-by-side vehicle comparison to see the differences and similarities





SEL Premium:

Volkswagen Passat photos

5 reasons to buy the 2018 Volkswagen Passat

What We Like

Smooth ride: If you're like a lot of buyers looking for a midsize sedan, the Passat's standard soft suspension tuning should appeal to you. It delivers a very smooth ride over rough roads and shrugs off potholes with ease. It may not be as sporty as the new GT or some other sedans, but it corners with confidence and poise.

Plenty of passenger and cargo space: The Passat's rear seats offer a bit more room than some rivals and more easily accommodate taller passengers. There's enough headroom and legroom that 6-foot-tall people won't feel cramped. Behind those seats, the trunk can hold a class-average 15.9 cubic feet of cargo, but the wide and deep space is better at holding big and bulky objects.

Fender audio upgrade: We're fans of the available Fender premium audio system as it delivers powerful bass and clarity throughout the dynamic range. Cranking up the volume doesn't result in distortion either. We recommend tracking down a Passat with this system if you're an audiophile, but even if you're not, we're confident you'll appreciate what it has to offer.

What Needs Improvement

Small infotainment touchscreen: The Passat's 6.3-inch infotainment touchscreen is small compared to its competitor systems. Additionally, the placement of the display lower in the dash is not ideal since it requires taking your eyes off the road to operate it. It is also surprising that there is no larger screen available even if you upgrade to higher trim levels and opt for navigation.

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Ratings & reliability

Customer ratings

3.6 out of 5

9 customer reviews
Above Average

RepairPal gave the Volkswagen Passat an overall reliability rating of 4 out of 5 stars, which RepairPal describes as Above Average. This rating ranks Volkswagen Passat 20th out of 28 among Midsize Cars.

View RepairPal's full rating of the Volkswagen Passat

Volkswagen Passat features and specs

SEL Premium 2WD 4D Sedan

Standard Features

  • ABS Brakes
  • Air Conditioning
  • Alloy Wheels
  • AM/FM Stereo
  • Android Auto
  • Apple CarPlay
  • Automated Cruise Control
  • Automatic Transmission
  • Auxiliary Audio Input
  • Blind Spot Monitor
  • Bluetooth Technology
  • CD Audio
  • Cruise Control
  • Fender Audio
  • Front Seat Heaters
  • Lane Departure Warning
  • Leather Seats
  • Memory Seat(s)
  • Navigation System
  • Overhead Airbags
  • Parking Sensors
  • Power Locks
  • Power Mirrors
  • Power Seat(s)
  • Power Windows
  • Rear Defroster
  • Rear View Camera
  • Remote Start
  • Satellite Radio Ready
  • Side Airbags
  • Smart Key
  • Sunroof(s)
  • Traction Control
  • Turbo Charged Engine
  • Rear Spoiler

Drive Wheels

Front Wheel Drive (2WD)

Engine size




Torque (ft-lbs)


Engine type

Turbo Gas

Fuel capacity




Overall length






Leg room

F 42.4"/R 39.1"

Head room

F 38.3"/R 37.8"

Front tires


Rear tires


Seating capacity


Max towing capacity

100/1000 lbs.



2018 Volkswagen Passat FAQ

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