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What's your take on the 2012 Motor Trends Car of the Year?


So Motor Trend has named the Volkswagen Passat the 2012 Motor Trend Car of the Year. How did it win exactly? Yahoo attributes that to a few things including:

Advancement in design: According to engineering guru Chris Theodore the exterior is”tastefully executed with really tight shut lines and nice detailing.” The result is sort of a time-release appeal that blossoms upon close scrutiny or when hand-washing the vehicle. It’s a less flashy design than the Sonata’s, but way more cohesive than the Accord’s.

Engineering Excellence: Theodore again admits,  “It’s the best-tamed VW I-5 application ever. The thrashiness has been masked, and the engine is very quiet. A fine choice for middle America in real-world driving conditions.” Jim Hall, product expert, declared  “hands down, my favorite”

Efficiency: With a recorded fuel economy stat of 34.3 mpg,  exactly halfway between the EPA city and highway ratings of 22/31 mpg, no wonder it ranked #1.

Safety: Six airbags, tire pressure monitoring, brake-assist, among many other features. Reynolds proclaimed the Passat “substantially more integrated and driver-attuned than the Camry. In the figure eight, its braking, turn-in, cornering, and exit are all fluidly linkable with less roll and better road feel.”

Value: Base priced at 27k not a bad deal. And ownership costs are also further suppressed by VW’s Carefree Maintenance Program, which picks up the tab for all scheduled stops during the 3-year/36,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty.

Check out the Passat and let us know what you think. Is it a deserved win? If not, who else could have been in the running for this title? Ford Fusion, Honda Accord, Hyundai Sonata, Chevy Impala?

Tyson Gamblin
VW is getting some heat right now from Consumer Reports and maybe some other outfits soon to follow. That VW was providing the media slightly tweaked versions of production vehicles. http://www.autoblog.com/2011/11/23/consumer-reports-calls-into-question-whether-vws-press-c/
Bryan Armstrong
I was pleasantly shocked that I liked it...a lot. Granted I would go for the TDI SEL which is an amazing car, but I think the re-design stood out over the Camry's "freshened" design.
Jim Bell
Interesting read Tyson. You have to wonder if it is indeed true. I have said for the last few years that VW might be a force to be reckon with and may break into a little market share for most dealers. I'm just glad that the dealer close to me probably won't hurt my sales. The Passat is a nice looking vehicle refreshed though, and that's from a Honda guy.
Chris Costner
I think this Passat is my favorite of any in the last 10 years or so. I am going to side with Bryan on the TDI SEL. That vehicle is all of it. Tyson I ran across that autoblog post as well a few days back. I cannot comment because I don't know but it is something to think about. Maybe we will hear more later. Jim, Im glad you like the look of the Passat, thanks for the nice comment.

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