Volkswagen has revealed the first technical details of the all-new Passat Saloon and Estate, ahead of the cars’ unveiling in July and their public premiere at the Paris Motor Show in October.
The eighth-generation Passat will bring with it a range of new technologies and features, to ensure that even after 41 years and over 23 million sales worldwide, it remains as competitive as ever.
Thanks to the use of advanced materials – including high-strength, hot-formed steel and aluminum in certain areas – the new Passat is up to 85 kg lighter than its predecessor, helping it to claim expected fuel-efficiency improvements of up to 20 per cent.
The weight reduction is broken down as follows:
- Running gear: -9 kg. The weight of the running gear was reduced by such measures as the use of lightweight metals. The rear axle, for example, weighs 4.7 kg less and the steering system 2.2 kg less.
- Engines: -40 kg. The turbocharged four-cylinder engines used in the Passat weight significantly less.
- Electrical: -3 kg. Aluminum makes the electrical components, electronics and thereby the overall electrical system lighter in weight. Wire gauges were also optimized.
- Body and equipment: -33 kg. Progressive steel construction with ultra-high strength and hot- formed steels make the car body lighter. For the first time in a Passat, aluminum was also used in the body structure. Advanced materials and a new air conditioner lead to weight savings in the equipment area as well. In total, the entire superstructure was made up to 33 kg lighter.
Despite exterior dimensions that are actually smaller than those of the previous Passat, interior space is improved, with more leg- and head-room, as well as increased luggage space.
A highlight of the Passat’s new range of engines is a high-performance, four-cylinder, 2.0-liter, bi-turbo diesel delivering 236 hp and 500 Nm from 1,750 rpm. This engine will be available only with a new seven-speed DSG gearbox and 4MOTION all-wheel drive. A plug-in hybrid model will also be offered, with potential to travel 50 km on battery power alone, and with a potential maximum range of around 970 km.
Some more details about this 2.0-liter TDI engine can be found below:
- The starting point for the new engines is the EA288 series engines that are based on the modular diesel component system (MDB). In order to achieve the high specific output of 118 hp per liter of cubic capacity, a compact bi-turbo module with a high-pressure and low-pressure turbine was developed for the engine. The module enables turbo boost levels of up to 3.8 bars.
- The cylinder crankcase, crankshaft, connecting rods and pistons were adapted to the maximum combustion pressure of 200 bars. In addition a high-performance cylinder head is also being used for the first time.
- Another new feature is the newly developed injection system with piezo injectors. This fuel injection system enables injection pressures of up to 2,500 bars.
- Positioning the oxidation catalytic converter, diesel particulate filter and SCR system (selective catalytic reduction using reducing agent AdBlue) close to the engine makes the emission control components react especially quickly. The new 2.0 TDI complies with the Euro 6 exhaust gas standard.
- In order to optimize comfort at low engine speeds, a newly developed centrifugal pendulum absorber is being used in the gearbox of the 2.0l TDI.
Other new technology to be offered on the new Passat includes the Active Info Display, which replaces the instrument cluster with a fully configurable interactive 12.3-inch TFT display; a heads-up display; the latest Modular Infotainment System, including the Car-Net remote app; a further-developed 360-degree Area View function; and the latest generation of Park Assist. This newly developed Park Assist includes the option for the car to park itself forwards into perpendicular spaces – useful, for example at supermarket car parks, where access to the boot is important. It also includes a world-first Trailer Assist, which provides assistance when reversing a vehicle with a trailer attached.
Other safety technology includes Side Assist with Rear Traffic Alert; Traffic Jam Assist which makes stop-and-go driving more comfortable; Emergency Assist, which can potentially halt a vehicle when the driver is incapacitated; and the latest Front Assist system with City Emergency Braking, which optionally combines both radar and camera sensors to add pedestrian detection.
All new Passats will feature LED tail lights, while headlights will be halogen or LED. In conjunction with Dynamic Light Assist, one of the two LED headlight options automatically adjusts the beam for maximum illumination of the road without dazzling other traffic.
Further details and first pictures of the Passat will be available in early July, ahead of the car’s public unveiling at the Paris Motor Show in October. Sales will start before the end of the year, with first deliveries expected in early 2015.
With all these features, Volkswagen aims at positioning this new Passat close to or into the premium segment. Do you think they will manage to compete with Mercedes C-Class and BMW 3 series in terms of features, comfort and safety?