We owned our Passat wagon for almost 5 years and 52,000 miles. Overall this has been a good car. My wife loved it for hauling around our first child for the first 4 years then I got it when we put her in a Honda Odyssey for hauling our two kids. I used it as a commuting car into Houston from the burbs or to the park and ride. The car has a nice tight steering feel and great suspension. The overall ride quality is very good. I think the instruments are good and not too complicated which I have often read. The engine was good but the car felt a little underpowered at times with the AWD. I would generally recommend this car.
Nice steering and suspension, comfortable seating, heated side view mirrors and seats. Very smooth ride. Solid construction. Usually wins in a minor fender bender. Good sound system.
From day one, the transmission had a way of engaging the drive train in a rough manner (not smooth). I had VW check this out when it was new and they said the problem would go away when it "broke in" but it never did. Recently, at 45k miles, a dealer told me the situation was normal. Beware.
First, I can not understand why there are so many parts within the wheel bearing. That aside, my car has been a very reliable car. After 120k miles, I have replaced all of the ignition coils, spark plugs, struts, and a few other items. The importance of a reliable mechanic can not be made enough. The dealership's work - all of it ever made - had to be redone. No kidding. After I started going to an honest mechanic, someone who told me about certain gas stations, rather than replacing something that didn't need fixing, life was better.
The ride is still firm, yet comfortable, and no other car has the space in the back. The leather is still intact and the AC is chill'in. Could use a little more HP.
Floor mats move on me a bit because a car wash attendant tried taking one out without unsnapping it.
After 67,000 miles, the entire engine block cracked after hitting a pothole or small object in the road. VW would not admit any liability, my collision paid for it. The car runs very low to the ground. It seems like such a major repair for a minor collision. Cost $6700 to repair.
Solid feel, safety features, good trunk room in Wagon. The air, radio, and other features have been great.
Oil pan is very low to ground. Had a problem with my other Passat too. Repairs very expensive. Had 3 recalls and heard another one is due.