I have owned many VWs. GTIs, Rabbits, Busses and Cabrios. I bought the TDI Passat as a knee jerk reaction to the fuel crisis of 08. Let me just say this is my favorite VW of all. We dumped a Ford Expedition to get this and I only lost maybe 25% usable space. I get 28-35 MPG in the city and 38 on long highway trips. The first thing I did when I bought it was have the software reflashed with an Upsolute package for $450. I now have 50 more ft/lbs of torque and 30 more HP. Undetectable by the dealer, doesn't affect reliability, huge difference on the road. Best $450 you will ever spend. If you want a solid family sized car that is fun to drive that looks good and gets good mileage...Passat TDI!
Solid road feel. Solid build quality. Nobody does interiors better than VW/Audi even on the low cost trim levels. Fuel economy is great. The upgraded power (300 lb/ft of torque!) is great fun. Good looking exterior. Do tint the windows.
Some interior plastic trim can discolor. Reliability is not VW's strong suit. This car has been great so far. Time will tell. I have a feeling they got it right with the 05 TDI. The motors supposedly last for a very long time.