2019 Volkswagen Arteon Review

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List Price Range:$29,974 - $36,082
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Which Arteon does Edmunds recommend?

Based on price and feature content, the Arteon in SEL trim looks like a sensible choice. You get all-wheel drive as standard plus more tech features and leather upholstery. The SEL R-Line is merely a cosmetic package that comes with larger wheels that may degrade ride quality.

Edmunds' Expert Review

  • Sleek design
  • Extra cargo space thanks to hatchback body style
  • Extensive available technology and luxury features
  • Transmission can be slow to respond
  • Excessive tire and traffic noise at highway speeds
  • Materials quality doesn't match up with the premium price tag
  • The Arteon is an all-new Volkswagen sedan-style hatchback
  • Part of the first Arteon generation introduced for 2019

Overall rating

7.5 / 10

In real estate, buyers are taught to buy the most affordable house in a nice neighborhood rather than the nicest house in a less appealing ZIP code. In the case of the all-new 2019 Volkswagen Arteon, the latter half of that analogy seems to apply.

This large-ish sedan-styled fastback is emblazoned with the familiar VW badge that typically represents accessibility for mass-market shoppers. The problem is that the Arteon's price starts in entry-level luxury territory and extends even further in its top trim levels. Volkswagen's approach reminds us of its Phaeton luxury sedan from the mid-2000s that never caught on.

To its credit, the VW Arteon is substantially less expensive than the Phaeton when it was new. It's also in a very specialized subclass of vehicles that is positioned somewhere between sedan, hatchback and wagon. And compared to rivals such as the Kia Stinger and the Buick Regal Sportback, the Arteon's base price isn't nearly as jarring.

The 2019 Arteon does have some potential merit for its rather small audience. It possesses hatchback-based utility, available all-wheel drive, and a sleek and modern design. Overall, it's worth a look if you want something nicer than the typical family sedan but can't afford a luxury-branded model.

2019 Volkswagen Arteon models

The 2019 Volkswagen Arteon is a four-door hatchback that is available in three trim levels: SE, SEL and SEL Premium. All versions are powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine (268 horsepower, 258 lb-ft of torque) that is paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission. All but the base front-drive SE trim come standard with VW's 4Motion all-wheel-drive system.

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Standard SE features include 18-inch alloy wheels, LED headlights, heated mirrors, automatic wipers, adaptive suspension dampers, keyless entry and ignition, selectable drive modes, three-zone automatic climate control, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, simulated leather upholstery, heated front seats and 60/40-split folding rear seats.

The SE also comes with an 8-inch touchscreen, a rearview camera, VW's Car-Net smartphone app integration, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and an eight-speaker sound system with satellite radio. Standard advanced safety features include forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking and a blind-spot monitor.

Stepping up to the SEL trim adds adaptive headlights with cornering lights, a sunroof, remote ignition, adaptive cruise control, driver-seat memory functions, leather upholstery, a digital gauge cluster, interior ambient lighting and a navigation system.

At the top of the range, the SEL Premium comes with 19-inch wheels, automatic high beams, a hands-free hatch, ventilated front seats, driver-seat massage functions, steering wheel-mounted shift paddles, a heated steering wheel, heated rear seats, three-color interior ambient lighting, and a premium audio system. You also get lane keeping assist, front and rear parking sensors, an automated parking system, a surround-view camera system, and additional telematics features (vehicle location, remote locking and diagnostics). 

In general, features are exclusive to trims and are not available on supporting models. VW is offering an R-Line package that dresses things up with 19- or 20-inch wheels, a sporty front bumper, shift paddles (if not already equipped), contrast interior stitching, a black headliner, and metal pedals and scuff plates.

Trim tested

Each vehicle typically comes in multiple versions that are fundamentally similar. The ratings in this review are based on our full test of the Volkswagen Arteon SEL (turbo 2.0L 4-cyl. | 8-speed automatic | AWD).

EdmundsScorecard

Overall7.5 / 10
Driving7.5
Comfort8.0
Interior7.5
Utility8.0
Technology7.0

Driving

7.5
The Volkswagen Arteon's power specs are impressive, but real-world performance falls short. The transmission's tall gearing and occasionally stubborn shifting are the primary culprits. On the plus side, the Arteon has Audi-like handling and steering.

Acceleration

7.0
The engine feels strong taking off from a stop. But the transmission is tuned more for smoothness than sport. Accelerating from 0 to 60 mph took 6.6 seconds in our testing. That's quicker than most midsize sedans but a disappointing result considering the car's sporty pretensions.

Braking

7.5
The brakes feel strong and natural, and the car is stable even under hard braking. We measured a stopping distance from 60 mph of 121 feet, which is what you'd expect from a vehicle of this size on all-season tires.

Steering

8.5
The steering is nicely weighted. It also gives you a decent feel for the road, which is more than most systems in this class offer. The on-center feel is quite good. Overall, the steering imparts a pleasing sense of sportiness to the car.

Handling

8.5
In Comfort or Normal mode, there's noticeable body roll. Switching to Sport really tightens up handling, and the all-wheel-drive system does a good job pulling the car through turns. When you drive it harder, the Arteon feels more planted and stable than most midsize competitors. It's not exciting, but there's a lot of confidence and predictability.

Drivability

6.5
The transmission's lax gearing makes the Arteon feel like a larger, heavier car than it really is. Overall, the transmission is smooth, but shifts are a bit slow and slushy. Opting for the R-Line package and paddle shifters gives you more control for sporty driving.

Comfort

8.0
For the most part, the Arteon scores high in comfort thanks to supportive seats and a smooth freeway ride. Unfortunately, the suspension is overwhelmed by large bumps, and cabin noise levels are high for a car of this price.

Seat comfort

8.0
The front seats are supportive and sufficiently cushioned. There's not a lot of side bolstering. The simulated leather upholstery makes the seats feel hot even with the perforation. On cooler days (or with the SEL Premium's seat ventilation), these seats offer all-day comfort thanks to a nice shape.

Ride comfort

7.5
In Comfort mode, the Arteon's adaptive suspension irons out minor road imperfections really well, making it a great freeway cruiser. But bigger or sharper bumps, like those on a bad road, overwhelm the suspension and are transferred into the cabin.

Noise & vibration

6.0
Wind noise isn't much of an issue in the sleek Arteon, but the cabin gets surprisingly loud on the freeway due to plenty of tire noise. There's also not enough isolation from loud freeway traffic.

Climate control

8.5
The standard three-zone control with an optional rear-seat climate panel and heated rear outboard seats make this one of the more comprehensive climate systems in the class. VW's controls are straightforward enough, and the system does a good job adjusting to keep the car at your desired temperature.

Interior

7.5
The Arteon's interior is spacious and well-organized. Visibility is also excellent. While there are a lot of soft-touch materials, unimaginative texturing and placement mean the interior looks and feels a bit cheaper than it should.

Ease of use

7.0
Most of the primary controls are easy to use, and VW's digital information screen is straightforward. The infotainment menus are a bit more cluttered and could be easier to navigate, but finding the primary controls you need isn't a problem.

Getting in/getting out

7.0
The low-slung body and sloping rear roofline mean getting into the rear seat requires some ducking. Luckily, the generous rear footroom and knee room help.

Driving position

7.0
The Arteon encourages you to sit lower to the floor, but there's enough adjustability in the steering column and seat to sit more upright if you want. Headroom becomes an issue for taller drivers who prefer an upright position. The pedals oddly feel a bit too close, so taller drivers will find their knees bent more when situated relative to the rest of the cabin controls.

Roominess

8.5
Front headroom and rear legroom, along with elbow and shoulder room, are good all around. Rear headroom only gets tight for passengers 6 feet tall or over. The Arteon also feels more open thanks to all the glass and light interior colors.

Visibility

8.0
It's pretty easy to see out of, especially for a coupe-style hatchback such as this. The long side windows provide good over-the-shoulder views, and the front roof pillars don't create much of a blind spot when turning. The small side mirrors are the only real issue.

Quality

6.5
The interior looks less rich than it is because even the soft-touch materials are molded with the same texture used in VW's hard plastics … and, yes, there are still hard plastics around. It's a weird mix: A lot of surfaces feel nice for a VW, but overall it falls short of what several competitors offer.

Utility

8.0
The Arteon offers an incredible trunk space, with a massive hatch opening and expansive cargo area. Unfortunately, small-item storage is lacking, with too-small trays and cubbies. You'll have issues even keeping a large smartphone within easy reach.

Small-item storage

6.0
There aren't a lot of interior storage options. The center armrest bin is shallow, and the phone cubby is undersized. The tandem cupholders are decently sized, and the door pockets are padded to keep stuff from knocking around, but there's a definite lack of space.

Cargo space

9.0
The Arteon's trunk is fantastic. The hatchback body provides lots of space and a big opening to make loading easy. At 27 cubic feet, maximum space dwarfs just about any competitor's figure in the segment. But the rear seats don't fold perfectly flat, so you can't slide long, heavy objects through easily.

Child safety seat accommodation

7.5
There's plenty of room for car seats, and the anchor points are covered with plastic sleeves that make them very easy to find and access. The sloping rear roofline means you'll be bending over a lot to manage things.

Technology

7.0
The Arteon offers a comprehensive set of technology features and sharp-looking interfaces along with standard smartphone integration. Unfortunately, Volkswagen's infotainment functionality feels a half-generation behind leading competitors.

Audio & navigation

7.0
The base stereo leaves a bit to be desired, considering for the money you're getting slightly better upgraded units in competitive cars. VW's navigation system is easy to read and has a few neat tricks up its sleeve, such as integration with the large gauge cluster display and a proximity-sensitive touchscreen. But it doesn't offer any real practical advantages over competitors in finding destinations or navigating traffic.

Smartphone integration

7.0
While you get Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, they don't integrate quite as well as in some competitors. For example, nav prompts and track listing info aren't displayed in the gauge cluster. (Honda has figured out how to make that work.)

Driver aids

7.0
Adaptive cruise is slow to accelerate after the car ahead pulls away. But we do like that it's not overly sensitive in braking, and it works in stop-and-go traffic. Blind-spot monitoring is standard, which helps compensate for the small side mirrors. Oddly, lane keeping assist is only available on the highest trim level.

Voice control

6.5
Volkswagen's integrated voice controls can be a bit finicky. You'll have to learn the system's specific phrasing to access various commands. The on-screen prompts help, but they don't solve the issue.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the Used 2019 Volkswagen Arteon.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

5 out of 5 stars
Premium At a good price
Angad Singh,06/18/2019
SE 4MOTION 4dr Hatchback AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A)
The Arteon is a beautiful car for enthusiasts looking for a spacious sedan. Based on it’s size it is right up there with the Audi A5 Sportback. The power is sufficient enough to coast through a highway at good speeds. The 260 Pound feet torque at low rpm makes it easy to take over. The car is huge on space. I am 6 feet tall and never had an issue with the space. The back seat is humongous and it could easily fit 3 at the back. The boot is spacious and stylish. The digital cockpit will be a nice addition along with an already excellent 8 inch infotainment screen with  Carplay standard. It is easy to maneuver in the city and an excellent drive on the highway. It’s a true Grand Touring Car.
5 out of 5 stars
A refined sport sedan that can bring the muscle!
Anthony,07/07/2019
SEL Premium R-Line 4MOTION 4dr Hatchback AWD w/19" Wheels (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A)
I purchased one of the first available fully loaded SEL Premium R-Line Arteon in New England. I was drawn by the shape, design, and performance of the Arteon. Car and Driver magazine selected the Arteon as one of the 15 most beautiful cars for 2019. If you don’t want the looks and stares from people or for them to come up and ask you about this car, I would say buy something else! When you get tired of the “comfort mode” and want performance just put it in the “sport mode” and use the paddle shifters for a more aggressive driving experience. The Arteon was rated at 27 mpg on the highway, but I have found surprisingly good fuel economy on the highway. Over the first 3K miles I am averaging between 32-34 mpg. It has an amazing cargo space with more than 27 cubic feet and with the seats down more than 50 cubic square feet. My favorite features include: the digital cockpit, 4Motion all-wheel drive, ventilated and massaging driver’s seat, 700 watt Dynaudio sound system, 360 degree camera, Apple Car Play, adaptive chassis control, and adaptive cruise control. All in all I am very pleased with the car. I would say it is not a true performance sedan, but rather a semi-luxury sedan that can be aggressive when you need it to be. It comes with a 6 year/72K miles limited warranty which is one of the best available. On the down side, I needed to buy a 12V-to-USB converter for the rear seat, as there are no rear seat USB outlets.
5 out of 5 stars
IT'S A "BO DEREK!"... (an absolute "10!") LOL
T Ryman,05/13/2020
SEL R-Line 4dr Hatchback w/20" Wheels (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A)
I'm now 6 weeks into my lease of a new 2019 VW Arteon SEL R-Line. I've read every YouTube and car magazine review, test drove the Arteon and sedans like it multiple times... and then saw the deal being offered directly by VW (the best way to go into a dealer for a lease or purchase). The "incentive" offered on this model, spec'd as I wanted it (SEL & an R-Line), was $10,200(!) off MSRP (or cap reduction for lease) of $43,225. Sold. Sold. Sold! I have not seen a 2020 Arteon in any Phoenix VW dealer yet, so their inventories are of the 2019s. Everything about this car is top shelf. Fit and finish is superb, as you expect fr the Germans, gas mileage has exceeded the EPA estimates, and handling is like a car costing $20K more. The tech and safety is state-of-the-art, and oh yeah... the bumper-to-bumper warranty on the 2019s is 6 yrs/72,000 miles. What?! Lol. Pure joy to drive short or long distance (in whatever mode you're feeling: Economy, Comfort, Sport, or "Custom") and, I have effortlessly done 120mph when these flat, never-ending Arizona highways are Covid empty. Might even buy a SirriusXM subscription after my 3-month trial runs out... the music system sounds that good. Also enjoy the large sunroof, the paddle shifters when I gotta beat the BMW 3-series anything, and the digital dash ("gauge cluster" - those Germans!) In conclusion, no I do not work for VW, or any company related to, or working with VW in any way whatsoever. I just think it's an awesome car, (now) at a great price. Like one of the other reviewers commented, its a stunningly attractive body shape, unique, with folks constantly admiring it, asking me about it, saying, "that's a VW?" I smile, nod, and remotely start & unlock the car. Prost! ("cheers" in German).
5 out of 5 stars
Almost perfect car for the price
Arteon Owner 3485,01/01/2020
SEL R-Line 4MOTION 4dr Hatchback AWD w/20" Wheels (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A)
First .. don't be fooled by the MSRP prices. Dealers very willing to heavily discount. More than 10% as we closed out 2019. With the discounts we are at pricing similar to a high end Accord or Camry or an Outback. And much nicer car than these with much more exclusivity. Why compare to an Outback? Because interior cargo space is in similar ballpark. Not as big but incredible for a great looking sedan like vehicle. The car is beautiful from almost every angle and the interior is first rate. Ignore some of the reviews saying interior is not up to Audi standards. I liked the Arteon more than the Audi A5 and the leasing costs were much much less than the Audi. Power is amazing when you use the paddle shifters. Just OK when the automatic transmission does it. I love the car. Rides much better than the Volvo S90 I just turned in, off lease. Only real complaint .. initial quality is just OK. Two weeks after delivery I have it in the shop for some minor fixes including an annoying vibration sound. But VW is great. They think it is the sunroof and are considering replacing the roof to eliminate the sound. Overall .. I highly recommend the car. Incredible cargo space, very fast if you do the shifting yourself, beautiful interior and exterior and pricing in hi end Honda and Toyota range after discounts.

Safety

Our experts like the Arteon models:

Park Assist
Measures the size of available curbside parking and helps the driver steer into the spot.
Forward Collision Warning
Warns if an imminent front collision is detected and automatically applies the brakes if the driver doesn't respond in time.
Lane Keeping System
Warns you if the Arteon begins to wander outside of marked lanes and can automatically apply corrective steering.

More about the 2019 Volkswagen Arteon

Used 2019 Volkswagen Arteon Overview

The Used 2019 Volkswagen Arteon is offered in the following submodels: Arteon Hatchback. Available styles include SEL Premium R-Line 4MOTION 4dr Hatchback AWD w/19" Wheels (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A), SE 4MOTION 4dr Hatchback AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A), SE 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A), SEL R-Line 4MOTION 4dr Hatchback AWD w/20" Wheels (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A), SEL 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A), SEL R-Line 4dr Hatchback w/20" Wheels (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A), SEL Premium 4MOTION 4dr Hatchback AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A), SEL R-Line 4MOTION 4dr Hatchback AWD w/19" Wheels (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A), SEL 4MOTION 4dr Hatchback AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A), SE R-Line 4dr Hatchback w/20" Wheels (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A), SE R-Line 4MOTION 4dr Hatchback AWD w/20" Wheels (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A), SE R-Line 4MOTION 4dr Hatchback AWD w/19" Wheels (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A), SE R-Line 4dr Hatchback w/19" Wheels (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A), SEL Premium R-Line 4MOTION 4dr Hatchback AWD w/20" Wheels (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A), and SEL R-Line 4dr Hatchback w/19" Wheels (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A). Pre-owned Volkswagen Arteon models are available with a 2.0 L-liter gas engine, with output up to 268 hp, depending on engine type. The Used 2019 Volkswagen Arteon comes with all wheel drive, and front wheel drive. Available transmissions include: 8-speed shiftable automatic. The Used 2019 Volkswagen Arteon comes with a 6 yr./ 72000 mi. basic warranty, a 3 yr./ 36000 mi. roadside warranty, and a 6 yr./ 72000 mi. powertrain warranty.

What's a good price on a Used 2019 Volkswagen Arteon?

Price comparisons for Used 2019 Volkswagen Arteon trim styles:

  • The Used 2019 Volkswagen Arteon SEL Premium R-Line 4MOTION is priced between $33,992 and$36,082 with odometer readings between 29709 and35473 miles.
  • The Used 2019 Volkswagen Arteon SE is priced between $31,499 and$31,499 with odometer readings between 8785 and8785 miles.
  • The Used 2019 Volkswagen Arteon SE 4MOTION is priced between $29,974 and$29,974 with odometer readings between 21945 and21945 miles.
  • The Used 2019 Volkswagen Arteon SE R-Line is priced between $30,000 and$30,000 with odometer readings between 5971 and5971 miles.
  • The Used 2019 Volkswagen Arteon SEL Premium 4MOTION is priced between $35,000 and$35,000 with odometer readings between 11701 and11701 miles.
  • The Used 2019 Volkswagen Arteon SEL R-Line 4MOTION is priced between $34,495 and$34,495 with odometer readings between 15276 and15276 miles.

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Which used 2019 Volkswagen Arteons are available in my area?

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2019 Volkswagen Arteon for sale near. There are currently 7 used and CPO 2019 Arteons listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $29,974 and mileage as low as 5971 miles. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 2019 Volkswagen Arteon.

Can't find a used 2019 Volkswagen Arteons you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Volkswagen Arteon for sale - 11 great deals out of 13 listings starting at $23,038.

Find a used Volkswagen for sale - 3 great deals out of 17 listings starting at $13,004.

Find a used certified pre-owned Volkswagen Arteon for sale - 6 great deals out of 14 listings starting at $9,349.

Find a used certified pre-owned Volkswagen for sale - 3 great deals out of 11 listings starting at $22,840.

Should I lease or buy a 2019 Volkswagen Arteon?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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