VW has announced the end of the Passat.
Now, as the manufacturer focuses primarily on electric vehicles, they’ll stop making this well-known sedan.
As the Volkswagen Passat ends production, here are some highlights from this popular car’s past.
The Passat came to the United States in 1974. Launched under the name Dasher, this vehicle quickly become popular because of its size and affordability.
Volkswagen Passat Ends Production: A Look Back At A VW Classic
The car evolved over time to offer more space and power, but it remained a favorite all along. By the time the last Passat rolled off of the production line in December 2021, more than 1.8 million models had been sold.
Passat B1 Dasher: The One That Started It All
The B1 Dasher had a number of impressive features at the time, including a water-cooled engine and front-wheel drive. The Italian-designed car had a distinctive look with round headlights and large bumpers. Specs-wise, the car’s 1.5-liter engine put off 74 horsepower in the earliest 1974 models. Models made at the end of the Dasher period in 1981 had slightly larger and stronger engines.
Passat B2: Quantum
The Quantum borrowed some design elements from Europe’s Audi 80. Like many of the Passats made before Volkswagen Passat ends production, this model was available as a sedan, hatchback, or wagon. At first, Quantum only put off 74 horsepower, but this figure jumped to 100 by 1984. The Quantum wasn’t VW’s most popular version of the Passat, and it faced some stiff competition from Audi at the time.
Heading into the 1990s, VW diverted from the Audi platform and built the B3 Passat on its own architecture. It shared many similarities with the highly-popular VW Golf, including the Synchro all-wheel-drive system. This model was available as a sedan or a wagon. Performance-wise, VW made major strides with the B3. By the end of its production run, B3 Passats had 172-horsepower engines.
Specs-wise, the B4 was nearly identical to the B3. However, design-wise, the car got a complete facelift. VW designed an aggressive-looking front grille for a more distinctive look. They also fitted the car with some useful safety features, like dual airbags and tensioned safety belts.
20 years before Volkswagen Passat ends production: the Passat B5
In 1998, VW unveiled the newly-designed B5. This upscale version of the Passat had high-end styling and was built on the PL45 platform used by Audi. Therefore, the B5 shared some features with the Audi A4 and A6. The engines changed dramatically over the B5’s lifetime, starting with a 134-horsepower turbodiesel engine and escalating to a 270-horsepower 4.0-liter engine.
The B6 marked another Passat milestone with its exceptional styling and powerful specifications. VW changed the engine layout in the B6 from a longitudinal arrangement to a transverse placement. Next, in later models, they incorporated the first version of the 4Motion all-wheel-drive system that’s still present in VW cars today. The B6 also had a bunch of safety features, including ABS and upgraded airbags.
Volkswagen Passat ends production: But first, a Passat Midsize Sedan
In 2011, long before the announcement about Volkswagen Passat ends production, VW started manufacturing the last version of this popular car. The sedan was made especially for the North American market and built in the Chattanooga plant. This edition was the largest Passat yet, with tons of backseat and cargo space. VW made changes to the Passat between 2011 and 2020, with frequent updates to the interior, infotainment system, engine, and other features.
What’s Next For the Passat?
The announcement about when the Volkswagen Passat ends production was unfortunate news for VW fans everywhere. However, with VW focusing in on electric vehicle production, they had to phase the Passat out to make room for assembling the ID.4. Whether the Passat ever makes a reappearance remains to be seen.
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