Geneva Motor Show – Volkswagen has fully revealed the Arteon, a fastback-shaped five-door premium car that slots above the Passat, seemingly encroaching on territory that would usually be reserved for snazzier sister-brand Audi.

While the Arteon, which VW refers to as “an avant-garde gran turismo” will fill part of the void left by the CC, which really was just a rebodied Passat, the newcomer is a more distinct offering. It’s also larger than the Passat, gaining 95mm in length, with an additional 50mm in the wheelbase, and it’s 39mm wider. Its maker promises “excellent” interior space as well as a roomy 563 litre boot, but it’s the elegantly formed fastback shape that’s likely to seal the deal for many buyers.

The car brings new styling elements to the brand, particularly at the front end, with its deeper design and chrome cross bars that flow seamlessly into the standard LED headlights. The carmaker calls this “the face of a new VW generation.” Filling the large wheel arches are alloys sized between 17 and 20 inches in diameter.

The Arteon rides on VW’s now-well-known MQB modular platform for transverse-engined cars, with top models offering 4Motion permanent all-wheel drive, while VW’s DSG dual-clutch automated gearbox is standard on all but the base petrol model.

On that note, European customers will have six turbo-charged engines to choose between. The petrol range includes the company’s new 1.5-litre TSI Evo, tuned to 110kW, as well as a 140kW 2.0 TSI and an all-wheel-driven 206kW 2.0 TSI. Three 2.0 TDI units make up the diesel menu in 110kW, 140kW and 176kW guises, the latter fitted with all-wheel drive.

Technologically the Arteon brings a raft of new or revised safety gizmos into the VW range, including a newer version of Adaptive Cruise Control that incorporates navigation data and speed limits into its sums, second-generation Emergency Assist, which can swerve as well as brake automatically when conditions allow, a Lane Assist system that can react to swerving vehicles and predictive cornering lights that use navigation data.

The cabin, depending on how brave you are with the options list, features VW’s Active Info Display digital instrument cluster and newly developed infotainment systems with touch-screens up to 23.3cm in size. 

For ambience, VW has included a wrap-around ambient lighting strip, but the design otherwise bears a strong resemblance to the Passat’s cockpit. Buyers wanting to spice things up will be able to opt for ‘Elegance’ or ‘R-Line’ equipment packs.

According to VWSA, the Arteon is under consideration for local release during 2018.

IOL Motoring

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