Sometimes when you have a good thing, you want to hang onto it for a while, and that’s the case with the 2018 Volkswagen Passat SEL V6 Premium. Redesigned in 2016, it comes to us with one of the most spacious interiors in the mid-size market segment, along with a 280-horsepower V6 that propels it to 60 mph in just a tick over five seconds. And while it may not be the most luxurious or advanced model in VW’s lineup, there’s something to be said for a proper sedan that offers easy usability and solid performance.
For the full 2018 Volkswagen Passat SEL Premium V6 review, specs, pricing and data, read on.
2018 Volkswagen Passat SEL Premium Exterior
There are times when anonymity is key, and while the 2018 Passat is stylish, it goes about its business with a reserved quietness that many buyers will enjoy. By employing design elements such as a low, flat beltline, the designers were able to give the Passat large windows, which make for great outward visibility. Then there’s the use of the subtle chrome trim on the front grille, lower front fascia and around the windows. It’s in no way overdone, and lends a bit of elegance to the overall design.
Riding on a 110.4-inch wheelbase and having an overall length of 191.6 in means the Passat makes good use of its dimensions. Its size allows the wheel wells to run great looking 18-inch Chattanooga split-spoke alloys that wear 235/45-series all season tires. Proportionally, this looks wonderful, as often manufacturers stuff in oversized wheels that can detract from a vehicle’s look. In front, LED automatic headlamps flow into the front fenders, while integrated fog lights with cornering lamps are tucked nicely into the lower fascia. Out back, LED taillights and dual angular chrome exhaust tips finish out the package, while subtle wheel arches deliver a bit of European flare.
2018 Volkswagen Passat SEL Premium Interior
With one of the largest interiors in its class, the 2018 VW Passat SEL welcomes its occupants to vast amounts of legroom both front and rear. Eight-way leather covered power front seats with heat provide all-day comfort, while the faux wood trim, aluminum and gloss plastics elevate the interior presence. The gauge cluster, with its large analog readouts, is a welcome sight in a day and age where OEMs are pushing fully digital clusters. With a fair amount of nicely integrated tech, VW has also made sure that this is a cabin that’s easy to live with, by not making it overly busy. From an electronics standpoint a 6.3-inch touchscreen lets drivers access VWs Car-Net features, which include App-Connect with smartphone interface, an intuitive navigation system, and Fender premium audio, along with a menu to monitor and customize vehicle settings.
But the tech doesn’t stop there, as there’s also a Homelink integrated garage door opener, heated rear seats, adaptive cruise control, Park Assist, blind spot monitoring, an auto-dimming rear view mirror, lane departure warning, and of course, keyless entry with push button and remote start. Bluetooth connectivity and multiple USB ports for pairing your favorite ancillary devices also help enhance the overall appeal for tech-minded buyers. Once underway, occupants are treated to little in the way of wind and mechanical noise, along with great outward visibility, thanks to the large windows both front and rear. Trunk space is also quite generous at 15.9 cubic-feet.
2018 Volkswagen Passat SEL Premium Performance
It should be noted that the V6 that lives under the hood of this 2018 Passat SEL, aside from being a bit thirsty, is a hammer of an engine. The 3.6-liter 24v V6 (SEL and V6 GT models only) produces 280 horsepower and 258 lb-ft of torque, and will shoot the 3,534-pound Passat SEL to 60 mph in just 5.7 seconds. The power is usable throughout the rev range, and there is low-end torque right from the get go. And while it is a bit buzzy at full throttle, the V6 is a pleasure to live with on a day-to-day basis. Mileage is EPA rated at 19-mpg city, 28-mpg highway and 22-mpg combined.* A six-speed automatic transmission puts power to the pavement with quick and precise shifts, while a push-pull mode is available if one feels the urge to manually select a gear.
When it comes to handling the Passat’s electronic steering and suspension are set to soft, which means while the ride is wonderful, it does tend to push a little when driven spiritedly. Jumping hard on the binders felt great with very little pedal travel, while simulated emergency maneuvers were met with zero in the way of drama. This is a very neutral handling automobile that overall, is a pleasure to drive.
2018 Volkswagen Passat SEL Premium Safety
With a 5-Star overall safety rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the 2018 Volkswagen Passat SEL Premium offers such safety features as front and side airbags, side curtain head impact airbags, three-point safety belts for all seating positions, four-wheel anti-lock brakes, daytime LED running lights, electronic stability control and intelligent crash response system with emergency braking.
To learn more about the safety features on the Passat SEL V6 Premium visit VW.com.
2018 Volkswagen Passat SEL Premium Overall
With a base price of $34,650** and an as-tested price of $35,500** the 2018 Volkswagen Passat SEL Premium is the nicest version in the Passat’s portfolio. By combining a minimalist, yet well-appointed cabin, a powerful V6 engine, and loads of storage space, the Passat goes about its business by providing consumers with a smart sedan that’s capable of flying under the radar.
Drop by your local AutoNation Volkswagen dealer today to check one out!
*Fuel economy values (mpg) are EPA estimates. Actual mileage will vary and depends on several factors including driving habits and vehicle condition.
**Vehicle MSRP of $35,500.00 excludes taxes, title, transportation, options, and dealer fees.