The 2021 Volkswagen Passat represents the pinnacle of performance and comfort, wrapped up in a visually appealing exterior that exudes opulence. The midsize sedan has been a consistent class leader when it comes to interior space and delightful handling, and for the 2021 model year, Volkswagen has decided to retain the design philosophy of past years to keep the Passat doing what it does best.
The 2021 Volkswagen Passat comes in three affordable trims, featuring the base S trim, the SE trim, and the R-Line trim. The alternative trims offer drivers the ability to indulge in features such as remote start, power sliding sunroof, and premium audio systems, among other quality luxury features, such as a specialized front fascia and brand badging for the R-Line trim. With many updated and improved features from previous model years made standard for the 2021 Volkswagen Passat, you not only have access to a new model year but also access to some of the best features available on the market for a roomy, mid-sized sedan.
The 2021 Volkswagen Passat is powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder that produces 174 horsepower and 206 pound-feet of torque. The Passat features a 6-speed automatic transmission in a front-wheel drivetrain configuration. In addition to this, you can make use of the steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters, so you can control how and when you want to shift with the Passat for responsive, performance-driven handling. This allows the mid-sized sedan to behave quite well in the busy urban streets and along the long-winding highways while providing drivers with excellent fuel economy.
In fact, the 2021 Volkswagen Passat has seen major improvements in its engineering from the 2020 model year, with Volkswagen pushing the fuel economy up to 24 miles per gallon in the city and up to 36 miles per gallon on the highway.2 The Passat has a combined fuel economy of 28 miles per gallon, making it one of the most economical midsize sedans on the market. This gives drivers a great opportunity to explore some roads far less traveled, knowing that they won't have to fill up the fuel tank anytime soon after leaving the gas station.
For those wanting to indulge in the Passat's sportier side, the R-Line trim takes advantage of the already visually enticing curvature on the exterior with a very appealing alteration to the front fascia. This includes an aerodynamic front bumper and a sleek new rear bumper to highlight the trim differences. An added bonus with the 19-inch wheels also gives the vehicle an almost aftermarket tuner guise, which is bound to appeal to those who want a sedan with enough room for multiple passengers, but with the flash and panache to showcase their youth and vibrancy.
With the Volkswagen Carefree Coverage suite made standard for all 2021 Volkswagen Passat models, it means you have instant access to 2 years of free maintenance service for up to 20,000 miles, with 3 years or 36,000 miles worth of roadside assistance, and 4 years or 50,000 miles of a limited bumper-to-bumper warranty. So, you can easily keep your Passat running smoothly wherever you travel.
The exterior and performance of the Passat may be highly enticing for most potential car shoppers upon first viewing its impressive lines and classy exterior, but it's the interior where the Passat really shines. The 2021 Volkswagen Passat seats up to 5, with two in the front and three in the rear. There is 38-inches of headroom in the front and rear, 57-inches of shoulder room, and up to 42.4-inches of legroom.
The Passat, in total, boasts an impressive passenger volume of 102 cubic feet of space, so passengers both in the front and in the rear have plenty of room to stretch their limbs. There is up to 15.9-cubic feet of cargo capacity, allowing passengers to store plenty of cargo in the rear of the vehicle. The Passat also allows for up to 948 pounds of payload capacity and 1,000 pounds of towing.
A leather-wrapped steering wheel with cloth upholstery for the seating comes standard, but synthetic leather upholstery, heated front seats, and a power adjustable driver seat are all available. For the R-Line, you can enjoy full leather upholstery, as well as heated front and rear seats for all passengers. Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children also come standard for the rear outboard seats, accommodating all manner of families, from those with older kids to those with small children. The availability of push-button start and dual-zone climate control adds to the appeal of the 2021 Volkswagen Passat.
You also get standard features such as USB connectivity for electronic devices as well as the ability to charge devices via cable. For those who enjoy voice-activated features, media access, and app features made available within the vehicle, Bluetooth support for wireless devices, along with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, are integrated as standard features into all trim variations of the 2021 Passat, as well as both HD radio and SiriusXM Satellite Radio.
Shoppers who opt for the R-Line trim gain access to additional interior integration features, such as Fender's premium audio system, in which to enjoy the HD radio or SiriusXM Satellite Radio content. For those who want some extra spice and luxury out of their travels, the availability of a power tilting/sliding sunroof helps top off the interior features of the Passat.
The 2021 Volkswagen Passat truly shines in the technology department, as it not only retains many of the feature upgrades it received during the 2020 model year refresh, but Volkswagen has updated and upgraded the offerings with a lot of standard infotainment and safety technologies. This includes everything from the SE trim's remote start functionality to the availability of large-screen infotainment access in the R-Line trim.
The Passat comes standard with a 6.3-inch infotainment touchscreen which you can use to access in-car apps, vehicle health information, as well as apps from smart devices such as phones and tablets. The touchscreen features proximity sensitivity as well as contains console dashboard functionality for SD cards.
The infotainment offerings are powered by the Volkswagen Car-Net, which is an app for your mobile smart device that enables owners to use remote commands, parking information, VW Car-Net Hotspot, and Safe & Secure features, so you have access to your vehicle's whereabouts at all times. And with the family guardian alert system, parents can set speed limits and restrictions on how the Passat can be driven by teens.
Safety features extend beyond the apps, however. Driver aids and assists, such as the Rear View Camera System, give you full access to what's happening behind the Passat. An Intelligent Crash Response System can protect passengers by turning off the fuel pumps and unlocking the doors while activating hazard lights in case of an accident. But with features such as the Automatic Post-Collision Braking System and crumple-zone crash cage, the Passat is designed to mitigate as much damage as possible if a crash does occur.
However, crashes and accidents are approached as rare circumstances for the Passat, given that many driver aids are made standard to prevent or reduce the occurrence of a crash as much as possible. This includes front electronic brake-pressure distribution to help aid drivers during situations that require quick and reactive hard-braking. And the electronic stability control systems work in tandem with the Passat's advanced multi-link suspension to reduce sliding, loss of traction control, or under or over-steering.
Multiple airbags are standard across all trims, along with Blind Spot Monitoring and Rear Traffic Alerts, so drivers can be made aware of things that might slip by the human eye. And even if a potentially hazardous situation does arise, Forward Collision Warning and Autonomous Emergency Braking are designed to help reduce any chance of an actual collision occurring, making the Passat a vehicle made from top to bottom to be as safe as possible.