Volkswagen Passat 1.4 TSI (DSG) Review: Class action

Volkswagen Passat 1.4 TSI (DSG) Review: Class action

OneShift Editorial Team
OneShift Editorial Team
23 Nov 2012
What we like:
pros
Peugeot 508: Long equipment list
pros
high quality cabin
pros
beautifully-crafted exterior
pros
fast off the line. Volkswagen Passat: Airy cabin
pros
respectable build quality
pros
cheaper road tax.
What we dislike:
cons
Peugeot 508: Steering needs some getting used to
cons
boot space could be bigger. Volkswagen Passat: Basic equipment list
cons
small alloys look out of place
cons
not as fast as the 508.

If you have a slight preference for ‘sports’ then you can do no wrong with these two. Though neither ride harshly or could be described as in any way uncomfortable, they both have a lightness and an urgency in a corner which make them genuinely fun to drive. Note though that as these duo’s transversely-mounted engines hang well forward of the front-wheel drive axle line, push it any harder and faster into a tight corner and understeer will set in.

Both are willing and eager to turn, both handle high-speed bumps with aplomb and both have minimal body roll. But if it boils down to steering feel, the Passat has the upper hand; true, both are electrically assisted, but the Peugeot’s feels slightly more artificial and doesn’t feel as sharp as the VW. Weird really, considering it has the bigger and wider tyres.

And so it comes down to picking a winner among these two here. This is not an easy decision to make though, as there are no duffers.



The Peugeot is quicker on its heels, thanks to the bigger engine and the fact that it weighs around 60 kilos lighter. It is better equipped, with a cabin that’s far more superior to the car it replaced and is nicer to look at on a daily basis. But the steering is something that needs getting used to.

VW’s Passat is a brilliant idea for our market – big car, small but powerful engine, quick transmission and a spacious cabin and boot. Best of all, it has better fuel economy and better price come sale time. But it isn’t the best equipped.

So who takes the cake this time around then? Dollar for dollar, the 508 give the best value and to top it off, costs $6.5k dearer. The French also has a more stylish exterior and interior, accelerates faster and gives a more refined drive thanks to the well-insulated cabin.

And so the lion roars today.

Credits: Story and photos by Azfar Hashim

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