What Volkswagen announced at last year’s North American International Auto Show in Detroit as the Passat Performance Concept has become the Passat Sport — a new trim level for the (North American and Chinese market) Passat. The Passat Sport will slot in between the mid-level SE and range-topping SEL Premium trim levels and is mostly an appearance package.
Equipment unique to the Passat Sport includes 19-inch Luxor wheels, a rear spoiler, foglights, a unique interior with sport comfort seats, carbon trim accents, aluminum sport pedals, paddle shifters (only on the automatic transmission), stainless steel door sills, and Sport-specific floor mats. The Sport will only be available in three exterior colors, including Urano Gray (exclusive to the trim level), Candy White, and Tungsten Silver, with the latter two hues being accompanied by a black roof and black mirror caps, as seen on the concept car.
These Passat Sport-exclusive features are in addition to those already offered on the mid-level SE trim level, including the Volkswagen Car-Net telematics system, the Premium VIII touchscreen sound system with HD Radio, automatic headlights, rearview camera, heatable front seats, and leather-wrapped multi-function steering wheel with audio and phone controls.
Motivating the Passat Sport is VW’s 2.5-liter five-cylinder engine — and it should be fine for most. But enthusiasts will want VW’s optional 1.8-liter EA888 Gen 3 turbocharged and direct-injected four-cylinder engine that’s good for 170 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque. According to VW, the 1.8-liter can be mated to either a five-speed manual (standard) or a six-speed automatic transmission (optional).
When it goes on sale in early 2014, the Passat Sport will start at $27,295 (including the $820 destination and handling charge) when equipped with the standard manual transmission and 2.5-liter engine. We imagine it will be one of the more desirable-looking Passats on the market.