Volkswagen Arteon

The 2020 Volkswagen Arteon comes in 4 possible trims: SE, SEL, SEL R-Line and the SEL Premium R-Line. This Volkswagen sedan is powered by a 268-hp turbocharged 2.0L 4-cylinder engine mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission. Besides the SEL Premium trim, which is all-wheel drive only, most models offer standard front-wheel drive and optional all-wheel drive.

The Arteon comes standard with adaptive suspension dampers and comes with several different driving modes including, Comfort, Normal and Sport. Drivers can expect great fuel economy with the 2020 Volkswagen Arteon, front-wheel drive models are rated at 22 mpg in the city and 29 mpg on the highway. The all-wheel drive models have a slight decrease but can still reach up to 20 mpg in the city and 29 on the highway.

The base SE Arteon comes stock with a handful of premium features, including 18-inch alloy wheels, dual-zone front automatic climate control, the Volkswagen App-Connect featuring Android Auto/Apple CarPlay integration, KESSY keyless entry with pushbutton start, power heated front seats, an 8-inch touchscreen and an 8-speaker sound system with SiriusXM and HD radio.

The mid-level SEL model adds even more standard features, such as adaptive headlights, adaptive cruise control, leather seating, power sunroof, power folding outside mirrors, remote engine start, a voice-activated navigation system, a 3-position driver seat memory and the Volkswagen Digital Cockpit display. The SEL R-Line trim adds dark graphite 20-inch alloy wheels, a rear lip spoiler, sporty styling cues both inside and out along with a sport steering wheel with paddle shifters.

The SEL Premium R-Line adds a 12-speaker 700-watt premium sound system, heated steering wheel, real-time weather and traffic display, separate rear HVAC controls, heated and cooled front seating, heated rear seats and auto high-beam headlights. The high-end model also comes standard with several safety features including Lane Keeping System, Park Distance Control, Active Side Assist blind-spot monitoring and Area View camera system and tracker system.

Standard safety features on the Arteon include 8-airbag system with side-curtain airbags that cover front and rear occupants, blind spot warning, a Front Assist forward-collision warning system with Autonomous Emergency Braking, hydraulic brake assist, Rear Traffic Alert, Pedestrian Monitoring and perimeter approach lights.

Optional equipment for the 2020 Arteon include an extended range remote and starter for the SE model, a Bumperdillo protection plate for rear bumper, a rear deck lid lip spoiler for the SE and SEL models, a roadside assistance kit, luggage net, wheel splash guards and a rubber mats kit.

Editors' Review

The Volkswagen Arteon is a very nice car that nobody's buying. OK, nobody is a bit harsh, but with fewer than 3,000 units sold in the US through September of this year, the Arteon is one of the slowest-selling cars from a mainstream automaker. And that's a damn shame.

"It's definitely better than 400 units a month," a Volkswagen executive said of the Arteon during an interview earlier this year. But honestly, at this point, even 400 units a month would be an improvement. So in the hopes of setting the struggling Arteon on a better course, Volkswagen is giving it a number of thoughtful updates for 2021, every single one of which makes this solid sedan even easier to like.

Visually, the Arteon's sleek silhouette doesn't change (that's a good thing). The frameless windows are cool and the hatchback shape makes this sedan super functional. Part of the 2021 redesign, defined air intakes flank either side of the front bumper, and the R-Line models have an LED light strip that spans the width of the fascia, cleanly integrated into the grille bars. Restyled 18- and 20-inch wheels are available (in addition to a set of 19s that carry over from the last Arteon), and a couple extra paint colors are on the docket, too.

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The Good ~ Lots of standard infotainment tech ~ Smooth driving dynamics ~ Great style, inside and out

The Bad ~ Lacks the punch of some competitors ~ Sloping roof means poor rear headroom

The Bottom Line The 2021 Volkswagen Arteon is an unconventional choice, but for folks looking to break from the norm, it might be just the ticket.

Editors' Rating
  • Performance 8
  • Features 9
  • Design 9.5
  • Media 8.5

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