Brake Pedal Feel Bugs Me - 2014 Volkswagen Passat TSI Long-Term Road Test

2014 Volkswagen Passat TSI Long-Term Road Test

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2014 Volkswagen Passat TSI: Brake Pedal Feel Bugs Me

April 11, 2014

2014 Volkswagen Passat TSI

I spent last weekend in the car on the left, our 2014 Volkswagen Passat TSI, but what I'm about to say also applies to our silver 2013 Passat TDI on the right and (to some extent) even the 2014 BMW 3 Series GT in the center. All of these cars have a soft brake pedal feel, and it drives me a little nuts in normal driving situations.

In our two VW Passats, the brake pedal is soft, almost squishy, and actual braking response is lazy in those first few millimeters of pedal travel. Press harder and you eventually get the requested slowing, but it comes on abruptly because the pedal feel is so vague. The upshot is that it's hard to stop smoothly in either Passat when you're driving in the city or stuck in stop-and-go expressway traffic.

It is probably something I would get used to if owned this 2014 Passat 1.8 TSI, but given all of the other fine options for a relatively affordable midsize sedan (Ford Fusion, Honda Accord, Mazda 6 and Nissan Altima), I don't think I would accept this compromise. I'll just get a sedan that has the brakes set up the way I want them in the first place.

Erin Riches, Deputy Editor @ 6,216 miles


  • yellowbal yellowbal Posts:

    The touchy brakes and touchy e-throttle are offputting in many new cars. Keep up the good work on reporting on brake and throttle feel for other cars. Congratulations on new baby.

  • miata52 miata52 Posts:

    I wonder if bleeding the brakes would help? I've bleed the brakes on new(ish) cars and was surprised how much the pedal firmed up.

  • hybris hybris Posts:

    Steel braided brake lines?

  • greenpony greenpony Posts:

    I seem to remember ten years ago VWs had touchy brakes.

  • mlin32_ mlin32_ Posts:

    The automakers can't please everyone. What some people remark as "overly sensitive" others will remark as "firm brake pedal feel". That said, late VWs seem to all have this annoying dead spot, whether it be a VW Polo to the Tiguan to the previous Golf VI that I've driven. One learns to adjust though.

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