Volkswagen Passat Sedan

There are two versions of the Passat, a wagon and a sedan, that are nearly identical but for the back half of the car. They both have an inline 4-cylinder engine with 200 hp and 207 lb-ft of torque. Though it's disguised as a sensible family car, the Passat reaches 60 mph from a stop in 7.4 seconds, and has an electronically limited top speed of 130 mph. It uses a 6-speed DSG transmission with TipTronic for manual shifting.

The Passat uses the latest technology for performance and safety. Anti-slip regulation, electronic stabilization, engine braking assist, hydraulic brake assist are all standard. The brakes are equipped with ABS and keep themselves dry: the system automatically taps the brakes a little. Six airbags and TPMS are also standard equipment, with rear side air bags available.

There are a few standard interior features that aren't even found on more expensive vehicles, such as the 12-way power driver's seat and a power glass sunroof. More common standard features include a trip computer, air conditioning, heated seats, cruise control and an auxiliary input jack for an MP3 player. The sound system is a touch-screen Premium VIII with a 6-disc CD changer, eight speakers and Sirius satellite radio capability.

With so much included with the Passat right off the bat, there are few options. But you can swap out the stereo for a navigation and entertainment system with a 6.5-inch color touch screen, a slot for an SD car full of music files or pre-stored destinations, and a 30Gb hard drive. The only package offered is the Budapest Alloy Wheel package, which includes snazzy 18-inch wheels with all-season tires and a sport suspension.

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