Paris Motor Show LIVE: Volkswagen Passat R-Line image

The latest generation (B8) of the mid-size model has made an official appearance at the 2014 Paris Motor Show, also available in the sportier R-Line declination.

Described by Volkswagen as “the most successful European business car,” the new Passat features an evolutionary design, taking inspiration in the styling cues first introduced with the seventh-generation Golf. Fortunately, the R-Line adds a measure of dynamism for the large sedan, with larger alloy rims filling the lightly flared guards.

The new Passat is a little sleeker than the outgoing generation: 4767 mm long, 1832 mm wide and 1456 mm tall – 2 mm shorter, 12 mm wider and 6 mm lower. Also, the new generation is lighter, with each version weighing up to 85 kg (188 lbs) less.

There’s almost nothing interesting about the interior – albeit the maker offers an even more impressive array of systems – save for the disappearance of the traditional analog instruments (only on pricier models, though). They have been replaced with a configurable 12.3-inch TFT screen – TT’s Active Info Display.

Engine options range from a 1.4 TSI offering 125 PS (92 kW) and 150 PS (110 kW) to a 2.0 TSI that can deliver 280 PS (206 kW). The diesels go up to 240 PS (176 kW) and there’s also a plug-in hybrid version. The latter has a 1.4 TSI and an electric motor that can deliver together 211 PS (155 kW).