The B8 generation of the mid-sized Passat has just been revealed, with Volkswagen aiming for the model to reclaim its former top sales “modjo”, while also snatching buyers from the premium brands.
The upgraded, evolutionary designed new generation has been thoroughly reengineered, aiming to increase components sharing to lower costs, introduce new technology and offer features normally reserved to luxury brands. The mainstream sedan will also be Volkswagen brand’s first model to be equipped with a head-up display.
“Competitors struggle to keep pace with VW,” said Juergen Pieper, an analyst with Bankhaus Metzler. The newly unveiled Passat “looks set to maintain VW’s dominance in the segment.”
The figures though are not so bright – as last year Volkswagen lost dominance of the European sedan market as Passat’s sales dipped under those set by BMW’s 3 Series.
The new generation “introduces technologies and features in the mid-market that are otherwise only available in higher segments,” said Chief Executive Officer Martin Winterkorn. “The new Passat is giving the Volkswagen brand a powerful push.”
According to IHS, Volkswagen’s lead in the segment will be secured by the new generation, as the forecaster predicts that in 2015 the deliveries of the new Passat would jump 65% in Europe to 228,000 units, beating out premium rivals – BMW’s 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz’s C-Class – while the closest mainstream rival – the Ford Mondeo – would not reach even half the German rival’s figure.