Not everyone is buying into the idea that the sedan has been murdered at the tire-gloved hands of the crossover, which is good news for those of us who want to keep a little variety on our roads. That’s why it’s nice to see that Volkswagen’s re-design of the 2020 Passat is quite a dapper, handsome-looking sedan, even if it’s really more of a facelift than a whole new car.
Unlike the Passat sold in Europe, the U.S.-market Passat is one of the very few remaining VWs not built on the new modular MQB platform, which is a little surprising given Volkswagen’s seeming eagerness to unify all their products under the MQB tent. Our Passat has been designed for America-specific needs and wants, like more rear-seat legroom, and a cheaper price compared to the MQB model.
So, while the car still has the same bones as before, it looks all new, inside and out. The front end gets a much larger and blingy-er grille, a bold chrome grid that incorporates the low and wide headlamps like a wraparound mask.
The under-bumper front air dam area has been significantly re-designed, and the car gets some crisper and more angular sheet metal detailing throughout, including a rear fender that protrudes, shoulder-like from the rear and forms a nice break from the base of the C-pillar to the beltline.
At the rear, the widely-kerned P A S S A T badging between the taillights gives a nice upscale and elegant tone to the car, even if those quad parallelogram tailpipes are almost undoubtedly fakes.
I’m also not sure about that slightly Pep Boys-looking bits of chrome trim just in front of and extending onto the front doors.
Those wheels are pretty interesting as well, and appear to the the 19-inch ones from the sportier edition Passat, the R-Line, and were teased by Volkswagen in a tweet just a few days ago:
The interior is all-new as well, with an interesting accent strip of silver striped/ribbed material across the dash:
It’s a good-looking sedan, I think. Now VW just needs to hope that people remember what sedans are.