There’s been quite a long wait for it but VW’s plug-in hybrid Passat is finally here.
The Passat GTE goes on sale a full year after Volkswagen first said it would with a price tag starting at £34,025 once the government’s £2,500 plug-in car grant has been taken off.
It’s said to return 166mpg on the combined cycle, with CO2 emissions of less than 39g/km. It’s available to order in both saloon an estate form, with a top-spec Advance version of the latter topping out the range at £39,230.
Powered by a 154bhp 1.4 litre turbo petrol engine in conjunction with a 115bhp electric motor, the GTE can hit 0-62mph in a fairly sprightly 7.6 seconds before hitting a 140mph top speed.
The battery allows drivers to travel around 31 miles on electric power, with a full charge taking about four hours. A quick charger is available, which can be installed at customers’ houses, and cuts the charging time to just over two hours.
Aside from the hybrid system, the GTE is mostly standard Passat but is distinguished from the rest of the range with unique C-shaped LED daytime running lights and a tweaked front bumper.
Inside, the Passat GTE features the option of an innovative Active Info Display, which shows the driver customisable readouts to display things like battery capacity and range.
There’s also a leather-trimming steering wheel with contrasting blue stitching, a gear knob specific to the GTE and blue stitching for the leather and alcantara seats.
Two trim levels are available in the UK, with standard equipment including adaptive cruise control, autonomous emergency braking and sat-nav, plus LED headlights and parking sensors.
The interior dimensions of the Passat GTE mirror those of the standard Passat, with its boot space still intact despite the hybrid system taking up extra room over a standard engined model.
Volkswagen hasn’t explained why the Passat GTE launch was delayed a year but with the global emissions cheating scandal the company has not had its problems to seek.