2008 Volkswagen Passat R36 Road Test Review NASIOC — Volkswagen Passat (North America)

1 мая 2015 | Author: | Комментарии к записи 2008 Volkswagen Passat R36 Road Test Review NASIOC — Volkswagen Passat (North America) отключены
Volkswagen Passat (North America)

Think of it as being like Tyson in a business suit – on the outside, but you can just tell it’s ear-bitingly mad on the inside

as they say, is full of It’s a familiar tale – boy girl, marries, then and goodbye to the low-slung sports Then it’s a minivan a bottle of scotch to drown his End story.

But it doesn’t have to be way. Not if Volkswagen has anything to do it.

The newest addition to VW’s performance line-up, the Volkswagen R36, is its all-in-one answer to the faced by nearly every car enthusiast – performance, or practicality? The R36 a case for itself as being and agile yet easy to live But has it got what it takes to be the ultimate sports car?

Firstly, the R36 is one of a roomy vehicle. It’s the most spacious mid-size I’ve ever seen, and more than enough in the back for a couple of baby toddlers/disgruntled teenagers to sprawl in Being based upon a chassis has clearly paid for the R36’s interior space.

Not that, but pop open the boot and greeted by a cavernous, flat area to store your children. Despite losing volume to the rear-mounted battery and the to accommodate a full-size alloy under the floor, the sedan’s still manages to displace 541 with the rear seats up and litres with them Impressive – if that’s what looking for.

So, the R36 already has the side of the equation well But at TMR, we aren’t interested in capacity or cup-holder counts – we want to know is whether the R36 has off the dowdy, docile image of the model Passat and can deliver on its of sportscar-like performance. Thankfully the people at Volkswagen heard our and passed over a Biscay R36 sedan.

Our task was to discover whether had succeeded in helping the ever-so-sensible ditch the pocket protector – and up a knuckleduster.

Peek inside the and first impressions are good. The and front passenger get body-hugging and bolstered sports seats, grippy San Remo microfibre in the centre panels to help your butt planted fierce cornering. Lower into the driver’s seat and it even better – these are good pews. Both seats feature full adjustment, with the side and lumbar support electro-pneumatically

The rear seats are also in the same microfibre/leather combo and are yet very comfortable. Seat are also fitted to four out of the seats, although I didn’t turning them on. (The effect of those leather-bound was enough to make me warm in the anyway.)

Aside from the the only other clues you’re in the flagship of the Passat are the dark brushed alloy in the dash and centre console, and the leather steering wheel to encourage ‘nine to three’ – exactly where your should be).

The rest of the is standard-issue Passat, which exactly a bad thing. The design is in its simplicity, although much of the is made of the same hard used in the base model it does come across as a little cheap). Slot the key the ignition and you’re rewarded plastic-on-plastic clacking and scraping – not in a $65,000 car. Push the key all the way in to the engine however, and you’ll forget all about any rough

The R36’s naturally-aspirated, 3.6-litre V6 internally as the VR6) whooshes to before settling into a tappety idle. Slot the into drive, release the parking brake, pull from the kerb and instantly you get the that the R36 is a much more machine that its more siblings. The steering is direct and the ride is firm (perhaps too for broken suburban pavement) and changes ‘solid’ and positive.

last bit is important. Although the gearlever looks for all intents and like a garden-variety automatic don’t be fooled. This is Direct Shift Gearbox and while it may look like the in your grandad’s Falcon, the DSG performance benefits that are beyond the scope of a normal


Internally, the six-speed DSG is just a manual transmission. There’s sprockets and selector forks around inside, and the more nature of these components less power is soaked up by the and more power makes its way to the

Great. However, the DSG’s party trick is in how it swaps The twin-clutch technology of the DSG transmission lightning-quick gearchanges on both and downshifts, so power isn’t and acceleration is linear. Similar are used in the Mitsubishi Lancer X, the latest iteration of the Porsche the BMW M3 and Bugatti’s all-conquering Veyron. to say, if the technology is good for those cars, it’s than adequate for the Passat.

On the the DSG transmission is, in a word, incredible. It with an alacrity that has to be and the six ratios endow the R36 with a ability that’s hard to Not only that, but if you tire of the ordinary ‘Drive’ mode and the more manic ‘Sport’ you can always take over via the paddles or the plus-minus gate on the

Acceleration is brisk, and when we the car over several 0-100kph the R36 whistled up to speed in just 5.6 every time, which is a match for Volkswagen’s own figure.

the red mist lifts the DSG settles a more sedate pace, slurring between gears and revs on the quiet side of the It’s a fantastically versatile but the delights don’t end with the twin-clutch gearbox. Not by a long

That 3.6-litre VR6 engine is of the R36’s strong suits. 220kW and 350Nm of torque on the narrow-angle V6 is always willing to the R36 towards the horizon. Direct (Fuel Stratified Injection, in and a high compression ratio of help bolster the torque which occupies a relatively band between 2400-5300rpm. It fantastic under load with the engine note truly sonorous around the – a far cry from its clattery idle.

economy is good for a performance too, with our R36 returning an figure of 11.0 litres per — not far off VW’s claim of The downside? The Passat drinks 98-octane petrol, so ensure wallet is full before up the tank.

Handling is another of the fortйs. The suspension is firm, yet mid-corner bumps with There’s an admirable lack of roll when pushing through the twisty bits – no feat for a mid-size sedan 1681kg. Credit that to the stiffer and 25mm lower (Macpherson struts on the front, in the rear) and the standard 235/40R18 SP Sport 01 tyres.

Need to stop in a hurry? The huge ventilated disc will pull you up hard, and look pretty trick their blue-painted calipers.

The 4Motion all-wheel-drive system is towards front wheels normal driving, but once is detected, torque is sent to of the wheels can handle it. You can tell the transition between front-wheel-drive and all-wheel drive occurs as the centre differential starts to up.

However, it’s the briefest of and the R36’s electronic talent has pointing the right way in milliseconds. so much grip available you to take it right to edge there is any sign of understeer or becoming messy.

The firm can be a little tiresome over tarmac or undulating, rutted highways, but considering the sheer ability of the R36 it’s a fair There may be better cruisers the R36, but there are very few out there that can match it for performance and versatility – not for the same anyway.

Volkswagen Passat (North America)

In fact, at the Passat price point of $64,990 wagon costs $2000 there’s precious few cars can hold a candle to its straight go and un-stickable handling. In fact, the really boils down to one Japanese contender – the STI-tuned Liberty GT.

The Liberty is almost a match for the R36 on price, but unfortunately it neither the Passat’s trick gearbox, nor the style and panache of the Nor is it as refined, or as comfortable.

Nor yet is it as pleasing to at.

If I had to choose between the two on looks the R36 would win hands down. The metal is shared with the of the Passat range, but it’s the body addenda that complete the package. Up front, a lower, more heavily-vented on the back a bootlip spoiler, chrome exhaust tips and a bumper. Sill extensions, arch flares and some delectable 18-inch Omanyt complete the package.

The whole combo results in a car boasts subtle visual but doesn’t draw attention the spoiler-bedecked Evo, or the bonnet STI. Think of it then as like Mike Tyson in a suit – smooth on the outside, but you can tell that it’s mad on the inside.

Standard kit is impressive the R36 comes with self-levelling headlamps with dynamic lights, cruise control, sensors, dual-zone climate a factory-fitted alarm and immobiliser and everything. Hell, even the wing mirrors and windscreen jets are standard-issue.

In fact, the option that would be ticking is the sat-nav system, incorporates a 30gb hard SD card slot, DVD player and an audio input socket in the armrest. (Then again, frills may only serve to from the more tactile of the R36, so perhaps leave box unchecked and save yourself the

The safety equipment list is comprehensive. In addition to the sure-footed system, the R36 gets ABS, EBA, traction control and ESP to keep you out of the weeds, while a complement of front and side should keep you in one piece the unspeakable happen.

The Volkswagen R36 is one intensely enjoyable car to drive, and has earned its place as the jewel in R-series line-up. But has it been by Volkswagen’s desire to make it fast, yet practical?

Well, an Evo X may beat it on a winding but the R36 is roomy, safe, comfortable and It is a viable option for motoring who want their kicks on the while needing a car to drive the to school on weekdays.

So yes, may be some sacrifices for practicality’s but this is without a doubt one of the performance cars on the market Compromises? Sure, but they are that I can handle. Life’s of them, don’t you know.

BIG STATEMENT “The VW Passat R36 is positive that driving doesn’t have to be crippled by the to accommodate the wife, the kids and the The R36 is truly one of the best all-rounders on the new car right now, combining a and spacious interior with a turn of speed — making it a solid proposition for new car looking for a genuinely practical car. Nice job,

Sophisticated yet sporty styling, V6, fancy-pants twin-clutch gearbox, handling, grippy seats, engine note

Gearbox’s of shifting up at redline (I want control, dammit!), cheap-feeling plastics, tyre roar

Volkswagen Passat (North America)
Volkswagen Passat (North America)

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