Volkswagen may actually be the launch of a new midsize sedan, but the name is still quite familiar with U.S. customers. After months of teasing a new four door, popularly known as NMS, VW officially unveiled the finished product, which debuts today at the 2011 Detroit Auto Show, will be known as the 2012 Passat.
Although the US-spec Passat carries a considerable resemblance to the European market model was launched last September in Paris, the two are not carbon copies of each other. As Americanized Jetta was launched earlier in 2010, the new car is growing in size and shrink in price, so to speak directly on the big hitters of the mid-size segment.
The outgoing Passat excellent 200 hp, 2.0-liter I-4 and six-speed dual-clutch gearbox is dropped in favor of an expanded lineup that Bennett's words, "meet the needs of customers in this segment". Nevertheless, the choice of transmissions is still known for Volkswagen fans. Base cars use a 170-horsepower, 2.5-liter inline five cylinder, mated to either a five-speed manual transaxle or a six-speed automatic transmission. Uplevel models will mate tried and true 280-horsepower, 3.6-liter VR6 with a six-speed dual clutch gearbox.