2021 Volkswagen Passat

MSRP $22,995 - $31,095

Ranked #11 in Midsize Sedan

7.7

Overall Rating

FILTER BY YEAR

FILTER BY STYLE

2021 Volkswagen Passat Price, Review, Ratings and Pictures

Updated on: August 18, 2021

Nathan Dyer's image
Nathan Dyer 

Senior Editor


With a major mid-cycle refresh to fall back to in the year 2020, the 2021 Volkswagen Passat comes with very few basic changes for 2021. The 2021 model of the sedan comes with a host of advanced features in an affordable price range. The 2021 model is offered only in three trim levels, namely, S, SE, and R-Line, starting from $25,000 and going all the way up to $31,000.

See detailed review »

Pros

Advanced safety features

Spacious and upscale cabin

Pretty enthusiastic engine

Cons

Poor fuel economy in the segment

No all-wheel-drive option

Bland aesthetics, especially the front fascia

What's New?

SEL trim has been dropped for 2021 MY

SE is offered with new 18-inch machined aluminum alloys and gets a sunroof as standard

R-Line got major upgrades in tech features 


Features

vehicle bio

base price

$22995

bodystyle

4dr Sedan

passenger capacity

5

top speed

155 mph

drivetrain

front wheel drive

engine type

displacement

121 cu.in.

transmission

6 speed Automatic w/Tiptronic

chassis

brake rotors (f/r)

12.3/10.7 in.

dimensions

wheelbase

110.4 in.

length

193.6 in.

width

72.2 in.

height

58 in.

curb weight

3325 lbs.

ground clearance

5.4 in.

capacity

passenger volume

12 cu ft.

cargo volume

15.9 cu ft.

towing capacity

1000 lbs.

payload capacity

926 lbs.

performance

zero to 60 mph

5.6 sec.

warranty

basic warranty

4 yr./ 50000 mi.

drivetrain warranty

4 yr./ 50000 mi.

corrosion warranty

7 yr./ 100000 mi.

roadside assistance

Yes


Pictures & Videos


Trims

S$22,995 onwards

SE$25,845 onwards

R-Line$28,645 onwards

SEL$31,095 onwards

Colors and Styles

2021 Volkswagen Passat in Aurora Red Metallic color
Aurora Red Metallic

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.

Ratings

Pricing and Features

8.0

Engine and Performance

7.8

Fuel Economy

7.9

Interior

8.1

Exterior

7.2

Safety

8.1

Competition

7.0

7.7

OVERALL RATING

Expert Review, Pricing Analysis and Buying Guide

7.7

Overall Rating


The sedan offers one of the sophisticated-looking cabins along with great comfort and superior ride quality. Passat is fitted with a 2.0L turbocharged motor that has decent performance but fails to deliver awe-inspiring mpg figures. After summing up the features and price range at which it is being offered, it competes strongly with the 2021 Toyota Camry, Chevrolet Malibu, and the Honda Accord.

2021 Volkswagen Passat Sedan front view
2021 Volkswagen Passat Sedan rear view

7.8/10
Engine and Performance

7.9/10
Fuel Economy

8.1/10
Interior

7.2/10
Exterior

8.1/10
Safety

7.0/10
Competition


2021 Volkswagen Passat Features

The 2021 Volkswagen Passat comes in three major trims, namely S, SE, and R-Line, and ranges from $24,990 and goes up to $30,990. The features like forward collision warning with autonomous braking, intelligent crash response system, and blind-spot monitor are part of its base trim itself, which ensures occupants' safety in every possible scenario. And the features like 17-inch aluminum alloys, LED headlamps with DRLs, leather-wrapped shift knob and steering wheel, and a 6-speakers surround sound system are also some highlights of its base ‘S’ trim.

Trim

SE

R-Line

MSRP (FWD)

$24,990 

$27,990

$30,990

Key Features

LED Headlights with DRLs

In addition to S trim:

In addition to SE trim:

 

Forward Collision Warning with Autonomous Emergency Braking

Dual-Zone automatic climate control AC

Power tilting/sliding sunroof

 

Intelligent Crash Response System

8-way Power-adjustable front seats with heating function

R-Line front bumper and badging

 

Leather-wrapped multifunction steering wheel

Remote engine start

Discover Media: 6.3-inch touchscreen with Navigation

 

6-Speaker Surround sound system

Black leather upholstery 

Adaptive headlamps

 

17-inch alloys

18-inch machined aluminum alloys

19-inch machined aluminum alloys

 

 

Lane keep assist and lane departure warning

Fender premium audio system

Moving on to the ‘SE’ trim level, it offers some luxurious amenities like power-adjustable heated front seats, dual-zone automatic climate control AC, premium leather upholstery, remote engine start, and a sunroof for a roomy feel inside. This trim has even better safety systems, which include an active blind-spot monitoring system, lane keep assist, and lane departure warning. And the ‘R-Line,’ being a top-end trim level, comes loaded with hi-tech features like automatic headlamps with adaptive auto high beam function, inbuilt navigation, and Fender premium audio system. 

Which trim should you buy?

After comparing the features and the price tag in which they are being offered, the ‘R-Line’ model looks like the best offering in the whole line-up, and we strongly recommend going for this trim option. Along with a sporty appeal, you will get features that take care of your onboard entertainment, comfort, and ensure a high level of safety. The features like adaptive headlamps, autonomous braking, and active blind-spot monitoring system are some of the highlights of this trim.

2021 Volkswagen Passat Engine and Performance

7.8/10

A 2.0L turbocharged inline-4 motor is being shared among all the trim levels for the Passat, which makes around 174 horsepower and 206 lb-ft. of torque. This engine is mated with a 6-speed automatic transmission, which provides a satisfying shift in an accurate rev range. However, it has a noticeable turbo-lag at the lower RPMs which somewhat interrupts the linear power delivery.

 2021 Volkswagen Passat Sedan engine bay

The Passat has a standard front-wheel-drive configuration, which ensures the maximum power delivery to the wheels. It has one of the best combos of a turbocharged motor and the 6-speed gearbox in terms of performance, which makes the sedan hit the 60 mph mark in just 7.5 seconds and it can complete a quarter-mile range in just 14.3 seconds. The sedan has a top speed of 130 mph, which is 5 mph less than both Toyota and Chevrolet in the competition.

Models

2021 VW Passat S

2021 Toyota Camry LE

2021 Chevrolet Malibu L

2021 Honda Accord LX

MSRP

$24,990

$26,070

$23,265

$25,985

Engine

2.0L Intercooled Turbo Inline-4

2.5L naturally aspirated Inline-4

1.5L Turbocharged Inline-

1.5L turbocharged Inline-4

Drivetrain

FWD

FWD

FWD

FWD

Transmission

6-Speed Automatic

8-Speed Automatic

CVT

CVT

Power (hp @ RPM

174hp@5,000 RPM

203hp@6,600 RPM

160hp@5,700 RPM

192hp@5,500 RPM

Torque (lb-ft @ RPM)

206lb-ft@4,250 RPM

184lb-ft@4,700 RPM

184lb-ft@2,500 RPM

192lb-ft@1,600 RPM

0-60 MPH (seconds)

7.5 sec

7.6 sec

8.5 sec

7.3 sec

Quarter-Mile (seconds)

14.3 sec

14.3 sec

16.0 sec

15.9 sec

Top-Speed (MPH)

130 MPH

135 MPH

135 MPH

N/A

The Camry is fitted with a 2.5L motor and produces superior power figures among all, while the Malibu has quite an underpowered motor. The Passat with a decent horsepower figure has an impressive torque output too. The powertrain setups of the Malibu and the Accord use a CVT unit, where the Malibu has a sluggish power delivery while the Accord is fastest to hit the 60 mph mark. When comparing the price tag, the Toyota Camry is the most expensive option here.

How well does the 2021 Passat handle?

Along with comfortable seating and smooth ride quality, the 2021 Passat ensures great handling too. The electromechanical steering adjusts its weight according to the driving speeds and provides accurate feedback that assures better control of your car. The paddle shifters provided in the ‘R-Line’ trim option ensure an even more engaging drive.

 2021 Volkswagen Passat Sedan ride and handling

The suspensions are tuned to offer a softer ride quality, and it can absorb some small bumps flawlessly and ensures a smoother ride experience.

Braking performance

To handle all of the acceleration, it has the biggest front brake rotors of 12.3 inches. However, the rear rotors are the smallest at 10.7 inches, resulting in not-so-impressive braking performance. The braking setup helps bring this sedan weighing more than 3,300 pounds to a complete rest in just 127 feet. Moreover, the all-wheel disc brakes as well as the ABS give more confident braking even at higher speeds. 

Models

2021 VW Passat S

2021 Toyota Camry LE

2021 Chevrolet Malibu L

2021 Honda Accord LX

Brake Rotors: Front (inches)

12.3

12.0

11.8

11.5

Brake Rotors: Rear (inches)

10.7

11.1

11.3

11.1

Curb Weight (lbs)

3325 lbs

3241 lbs

3126 lbs

3131 lbs

60-0 (feet)

127 ft

123 ft

109 ft

124 ft

The Malibu comes fitted with decent-sized rotors, but its curb weight really helped it to decelerate much faster and takes only 109 feet to reach a halt from 60 mph. The Passat has the longest stopping distance, while the Camry and the Accord take decently long to stop. When comparing the curb weight, the Volkswagen Passat is the heaviest which apparently can be realized from its braking performance.

2021 Volkswagen Passat Fuel Economy

7.9/10

The Passat isn't an economical car to drive in this segment, especially in the city. It delivers an economy of 24 mpg in the city, while on the highways, the figure jumps up to 36, but still, it feels quite heavy on the pocket. That’s apart, the Passat is fitted with the biggest tank in the segment, which can hold up to 18.5 gallons of fuel and manages to deliver a driving range over 420 miles in the city and over 620 miles on the highways very easily. 

Models

2021 VW Passat S

2021 Toyota Camry LE

2021 Chevrolet Malibu L

2021 Honda Accord LX

MPG (City)

 

24

29

29

30

MPG (Highway)

36

41

36

38

MPG (Combined)

28

34

32

33

Fuel Capacity (Gallons)

18.5 

14.5 

15.8 

14.8

Range (City/Highway/Combined, in Miles)

426/629/536 

421/595/493 

458/569/505 

444/562/488 

The Accord got the best combo of 1.5L motor and the CVT unit, which delivers class-leading mpg figures in the city, while on the highways, the Camry is more efficient. Great mpg figures can be seen for Malibu as well, whereas the Passat has the thirstier engine among all. Coming to their fuel tanks, the Passat got the biggest tank in the competition that offers a better driving range than the superiorly efficient Camry. The other three are also fitted with decent-sized tanks but stay behind the Passat.

2021 Volkswagen Passat Interior

8.1/10

The cabin of the Passat looks very sophisticated with a lot of sharp and edgy design elements. It shows the richness with the fitment of great quality materials all around which has a premium touch and feel, and the space is quite practical as well. The dashboard looks much more elegant and seems inspired by Audi’s new design language that cleverly hides the AC vents behind the array of horizontal design elements. The S and SE trim options feature a sort of premium-looking metallic silver trim running below the AC vents on the dash, door panels, and the center console. While in the R-Line, the metallic inserts were replaced with a sort of wooden accents. 

 2021 Volkswagen Passat Sedan dashboard

The steering wheel comes wrapped in leather, which has a nice grip and feels good to hold. The basic features like manually adjustable seats and steering column, manual AC controls, fabric seat upholstery, and a 6-speakers audio system are part of its S trim. While features like power-adjustable heated front seats, dual-zone automatic AC, premium leather upholstery, and a power sunroof are present in the SE and R-Line variants.

 2021 Volkswagen Passat Sedan front seats

The SE and R-Line trims get multiple color options for their V-Tex leather upholstery, which can be fitted at an additional cost. Along with the great comfort, it offers a better utility as well. It offers a trunk of 15.9 cu-ft. of trunk volume that can easily hold some mid-sized bags.

Models

2021 VW Passat S

2021 Toyota Camry LE

2021 Chevrolet Malibu L

2021 Honda Accord LX

Seating Capacity

5

5

5

5

Front Row (Headroom/Shoulder Room/Leg Room, in inches)

38.3/56.9/42.4

38.3/57.7/42.1

40.1/58.5/45.3

39.5/58.3/42.3

Rear Row (Headroom/Shoulder Room/Leg Room, in inches)

37.8/57.0/39.1

38.0/55.7/38.0

37.5/57.1/38.1

37.3/56.5/40.4

Trunk Capacity (cubic feet)

15.9 

14.1 

15.8 

16.7

All the sedans provide seating for 5 very comfortably. The Malibu has an ample amount of room at the front, while the Camry offers quite cramped leg space. The rear room is almost identical for all, where the Accord offers a great amount of legroom. The Accord has a voluminous trunk too, while the Camry compromises a bit in its trunk space. The 2021 Honda Accord offers the best-in-class cargo capacity of 16.7 cubic feet. Some of the standout features of its cabin are:

  • Power adjustable heated front seats
  • Premium V-Tex leather upholstery
  • Metallic and wooden inserts on the dash and the doors
  • Dual-zone automatic AC
  • Auto-dimming IRVM
  • Paddle shifters (In the R-Line trim)

What’s there to keep you entertained?

The lower trim levels of the Passat features Volkswagen's MIB2 6.3-inch touchscreen infotainment display, while the R-Line is equipped with an 8-inch touchscreen panel. The panel is placed below the vents at a better viewing angle from the driver seat and has high-quality graphics with a better touch response than the outgoing one, which makes it a truly intuitive unit. 

For your onboard entertainment, the smaller screen is paired with a 6-speaker surround sound system and brings some exciting features like SiriusXM radio, 4G LTE enabled Wi-Fi, VW car-net services, voice control, and Bluetooth connectivity. However, the 8-inch panel is coupled with the Fender premium audio system, which gives a truly immersive sound experience. Apart from the basic features available, some of the highlights of its unit are:

  • Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
  • HD radio
  • Inbuilt navigation
  • SiriusXM radio
  • 400-watts Fender’s audio system
  • Voice command

2021 Volkswagen Passat Exterior

7.2/10

The Passat looks like a typical elegant-looking sedan, but the front fascia of the S and SE trim levels shows blandness in their aesthetics. The headlamps got a projector LED setup with sleek-looking DRLs, which merges perfectly with the horizontal chrome grille. The lower front bumper of the lower trim levels features a simplistic X-looking design and fake air curtains at both ends which don’t really catch one's attention, while the R-Line has little blacked-out bumper treatments and looks more sporty and appealing in the line-up. 

 2021 Volkswagen Passat Sedan 

The sedan looks like sitting quite low to the ground from its side profile. The sleeker line running on the doors maintains its subtleness yet looks elegant. The base trim is fitted with 17-inch 10-spoke aluminum alloys, which have a bland appeal, while the SE and R-Line feature 18 and 19-inch machined aluminum alloys. The quad rear exhaust tips covered with chrome enhance the sporty appearance and catch one's attention at a first glance.

Models

2021 VW Passat S

2021 Toyota Camry LE

2021 Chevrolet Malibu L

2021 Honda Accord LX

Curb Weight (lb)

3325 lbs

3241 lbs

3126 lbs

3131 lbs

Length (inches)

193.6"

192.1"

193.8"

192.2"

Width (inches)

72.2"

72.4"

73"

73.3"

Height (inches)

58.0"

56.9"

57.6"

57.1"

Ground Clearance (inches)

5.4"

5.7"

N/A

5.7"

Wheelbase (inches)

110.4"

111.2"

111.4"

111.4"

The Passat is the bulkiest in the segment, and this might be a reason for its poor fuel economy. The Malibu and the Accord have well-balanced body weights in the comparison. The Passat has a greater body height, still, it doesn’t offer headroom as good as the Malibu. Also, the Passat has a smaller ground clearance than others, but it isn't really an issue on some bad patches of roads. Some of the standout features of its exterior are:

  • 17-inch 10-spoke aluminum alloys (S trim)
  • 18 & 19-inch machined alloy wheels (For SE and R-Line trim)
  • Heated ORVMs
  • LED setup with sleek-looking DRLs
  • Adaptive projector headlamps (in the R-Line trim)

2021 Volkswagen Passat Safety

8.1/10

The 2021 model of the Passat has not been tested for its crashworthiness by any of the agencies. However, it shares the same platform with 2020 as well as 2019 MY of the Passat. The 2019 model received an overall safety rating of 5 stars by the NHTSA and the tag of ‘Good’ in the majority of the domains by the IIHS. However, the headlamps were rated as poor. The same level of safety can be expected from the 2021 model as well, or even better. 

The 2021 model of the Passat packs a host of advanced safety features with it. Some of the standard features which you’ll find in its base trim itself are the blind spot monitor, forward collision warning with autonomous braking, rear cross-traffic alert, and a tire pressure monitor system. Climbing on to the higher trim levels, you’ll get some more features like:

  • Active blind-spot monitor
  • Lane keep assist
  • Lane departure warning
  • Pedestrian warning
  • Front collision warning
  • Autonomous braking

2021 Volkswagen Passat Competition

7.0/10

2021 VW Passat vs Toyota Camry

The Toyota Camry has a 2.5L engine that generates 28 horsepower more than the Passat, however, the Passat is quicker in its initial acceleration. The Camry received one of the efficient powertrain options that provide higher mpg levels, whereas the Passat is the least efficient in the class. Both have almost the same amount of cabin capacity, however, the Passat has greater trunk space than the Camry, which makes it a better utility machine. 

Toyota Camry

2021 VW Passat vs Chevrolet Malibu

The Chevrolet Malibu has a 1.5L turbocharged motor mated with a CVT transmission that produces lesser power than the Passat. The Passat hits the 60 mph mark almost 1 second earlier than the Malibu and completes the quarter-mile even faster. But the Malibu is significantly more efficient than the Passat and delivers a superior driving range too. The Malibu has a roomier cabin than the Passat but both offer an equal trunk volume. 

Chevrolet Malibu

2021 VW Passat vs Honda Accord

The 1.5L motor of the Honda Accord produces more power than the Passat, and despite being the CVT unit, it is faster than the Passat in hitting the 60 mph mark. However, the quarter-mile winner is the Passat. The Accord offers one of the best fuel economies in the segment, whereas the Passat is way thirstier in comparison. The cabin room is almost the same in both of the sedans, whereas the boot space offered by the Accord is a little more than the Passat. 

Honda Accord

 

2021 Volkswagen Passat Final Verdict

The 2021 Volkswagen Passat isn't really an economical sedan in the segment, but it offers a host of advanced features which you’d find rarely in this segment, especially its safety features. The features like forward collision warning with autonomous braking, intelligent crash response system, active blind-spot monitor, and adaptive headlamps really stand out in the segment and ensure your safety in every aspect. It also offers one of the sophisticated-looking cabin designs crafted with high-quality materials. Along with that, it offers ample cabin room and a better utility as well. The fuel economy and the exterior styling of the car might add to its cons, but overall, it is one of the best value for money offerings in terms of advanced features and comfort. 

Similar Cars

2021 Kia Stinger
2021 Kia Stinger

MSRP: $33,090

8.1/10
2021 Honda Accord
2021 Honda Accord

MSRP: $24,020- $30,420

8.3/10
2021 Chevrolet Malibu
2021 Chevrolet Malibu

MSRP: $22,970- $27,495

6.8/10
2021 Toyota Camry
2021 Toyota Camry

MSRP: $24,425

7.4/10
2021 Audi A4
2021 Audi A4

MSRP: $39,100

8.3/10