2017 Volkswagen CC

2017 Volkswagen CC Review

A stylish alternative to mainstream midsize sedans, the 2017 Volkswagen CC is an upscale surprise.
3 star edmunds overall rating
author
by Dan Frio
Edmunds Editor

Stand a few yards away from the 2017 Volkswagen CC, and its appeal is obvious. With sleek coupe styling wrapped around four doors, the CC's exterior design stands out as one of the most interesting among midsize sedans. Inside, the CC cabin impresses with near-luxury features and fit and finish. A 200-horsepower turbocharged engine and six-speed automatic transmission pairing feels quick and refined, and sounds terrific.

But just as the CC ("Comfort Coupe") tempts with shapely lines and smooth power delivery, it does have limited, tight interior space, awkward sight lines and a higher price versus more conventional sedan alternatives. The Volkswagen also doesn't handle curves and corners as sharply as its sporty styling suggests. You'll need to decide if the trade-offs are worth it.

Fortunately you won't need to compromise fuel efficiency. The CC returns an EPA-estimated 25 mpg combined (22 city/31 hwy). In our testing, we managed 25.1 mpg in overall driving and 26.2 mpg on our mixed highway-mountain driving test loop. Those are decent numbers but others, such as the Honda Accord, achieve better.



what's new

For 2017, the Volkswagen CC adds standard adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking and lane departure warning to the R-Line Executive trim. The Sport model gets interior enhancements including ebony trim and chrome accents. The Trend, R-Line and V6 Executive trims are discontinued. The manual transmission is also discontinued.

we recommend

The R-Line Executive's leather upholstery and adaptive cruise control are nice, especially for long-distance commuters. But with keyless entry, heated seats, Bluetooth and satellite radio, the Sport has the basics covered — and saves you about $3,000.

trim levels & features

The 2017 Volkswagen CC is available in two trims: Sport and R-Line Executive. The latter is available with an optional carbon-fiber styling package called R-Line Executive With Carbon. The Sport surprises with nice amenities such as power-adjustable, heated front seats and dual-zone automatic climate control, while R-Line Executive upgrades include leather upholstery, a panoramic sunroof and driver safety aids. For the same price, the R-Line Executive With Carbon adds gloss black exterior and carbon-fiber interior trim.

The CC comes standard with a turbocharged, 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine rated at 200 horsepower and 207 pound-feet of torque. The engine powers the front wheels through a six-speed, dual-clutch automatic transmission (VW calls it DSG).

The Sport comes with 17-inch alloy wheels, bi-xenon headlights, LED daytime running lights, foglights, rain-sensing wipers, heated washer nozzles, power-adjustable and heated side mirrors, auto-dimming rearview mirror, keyless entry, push-button ignition, cruise control, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, power-adjustable and heated front seats, 60/40-split folding rear seatbacks and premium vinyl upholstery. Also standard are dual-zone climate control, a rearview camera, VW Car-Net smartphone integration, Bluetooth, satellite radio, a 6.3-inch touchscreen display, navigation, and an eight-speaker audio system with USB/auxiliary/SD card inputs.

The R-Line Executive is upgraded with 18-inch wheels, a panoramic sunroof, unique exterior styling and doorsill plates, power-folding and heated side mirrors, driver-seat memory settings, steering-wheel paddle shifters and leather seating. Adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning and VW Car-Net App Connect app services also come standard.

trim tested

Each vehicle typically comes in multiple versions, although trim levels share many aspects. The ratings in this review are based on our full test of the 2014 Volkswagen CC R-Line (2.0L 4-cyl. turbo; 6-speed dual-clutch automatic).

Edmunds Scorecard

Overall3.0 / 5.0

Driving

3.0 / 5.0

Acceleration3.5 / 5.0
Braking3.0 / 5.0
Steering3.0 / 5.0
Handling2.5 / 5.0
Drivability2.5 / 5.0

Comfort

3.0 / 5.0

Seat comfort3.5 / 5.0
Ride comfort3.0 / 5.0
Noise & vibration3.0 / 5.0

Interior

3.0 / 5.0

Ease of use2.5 / 5.0
Getting in/getting out3.0 / 5.0
Roominess3.0 / 5.0
Visibility2.0 / 5.0

driving

edmunds rating
The CC's overall performance is acceptable, but several more affordable midsize sedans are quicker and handle the same or better.

acceleration

edmunds rating
The transmission is initially hesitant off the line, but the 2.0-liter turbo four-cylinder is smooth and revs eagerly. It takes 7.0 seconds to dash from 0 to 60 mph — not bad, but some rivals are quicker.

braking

edmunds rating
In our testing, panic braking distances from 60 to 0 mph were 120 feet, about average. But the brakes never feel all that powerful, especially when trying to haul it down from highway speeds.

steering

edmunds rating
Electrically assisted steering feels precise and goes into turns crisply. But it lacks the kind of feel and feedback from the front tires that more discerning drivers desire.

handling

edmunds rating
The CC R-Line was sloppy, both at our test track and out on the road. The suspension feels under-damped, and there's too much body roll. It doesn't handle nearly as sporty as it looks.

drivability

edmunds rating
The transmission is clunky at low speeds, which can be annoying in traffic. Above parking lot speeds, however, it shifts smoothly and quickly. Power from the turbocharged engine is solid at almost all engine speeds.

comfort

edmunds rating
The ribbed covering on the CC's seats doesn't look inviting, but the buckets are actually quite comfortable. This is a generally quiet cruiser, but we heard more tire and suspension noise during urban driving than we expected.

seat comfort

edmunds rating
The front seats are well-padded with good bolstering, but the low-positioned rear seats cause an uncomfortable, unsupported knee bend. The middle seat is hard and nearly unusable. The armrests have nice padding.

ride comfort

edmunds rating
We were surprised by the vibrations that crept into the cabin over the pothole section of our drive loop. The suspension absorbs most abnormalities well, but big bumps can be harsh and loud.

noise & vibration

edmunds rating
A mixed bag. During highway cruising, wind and engine noise is nearly nil. But around town there's a noticeable amount of tire and suspension noise as the CC often crashes over road imperfections.

interior

edmunds rating
You'd think the CC's low-slung roofline would mean a neck-wrenching lack of headroom, but the low-placed seats help. The interior is well put together and looks nice, although storage space could be better.

ease of use

edmunds rating
VW's nav/infotainment screen has been enlarged and updated for newer models. It took us longer than usual to pair a phone. The cruise control stalk is hidden by the steering wheel, but the climate controls are nice and simple.

getting in/getting out

edmunds rating
The front doors open wide, and you have to duck only slightly to enter. The rear doors are generous, but the seriously sloping roof makes the entry space so small that you actually have to turn your body to slide in.

roominess

edmunds rating
Front headroom is reasonable, door-side elbow room is decent, but the center armrest is narrow. Rear headroom is limited, but not as much as the car's shape suggests. The chopped side windows make it feel tighter than it really is in back.

visibility

edmunds rating
The thick windshield posts hinder the ability to look through turns. The rear three-quarter view is marred by sloping rear side windows. The rear window is steeply sloped so the opening is small.

utility

The downside to that sharp exterior styling is less trunk space than you might expect from a midsize sedan. The pinched shape could also complicate loading larger, awkward items. The rear seatbacks fold flat, and there's a center pass-through for skis and long items.

edmunds expert review process

This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.