2019 Volkswagen Arteon: First Drive — Cars.com

after a long wait we’re finally here
with the 2019 Volkswagen Arteon and Volkswagen tells us is this new vehicle
will be the flagship not just for their sedan lineup but for the brand as a
whole and the other good news from Volkswagen is I think that this car
might have just enough luxury to punch above its weight class as well
when thinking out the arty on its really important thing about what it really
competes with and two cars immediately came to mind after driving it and those
gonna be the kia stinger in the Toyota Avalon so those three cars are kind of
similar in price with the stinger being the most forty of the bunch and the
Avalon be the most comfortable the already on kind of splits the
difference between the two and also importantly I think it looks much better
than both of those vehicles there’s more than a little bit of Audi in the Arteon
styling and that’s frankly that’s a good thing when you look at it from the side
there’s a lot of 8:7 a lot of a5 Sportback for this kind of coupe like
profile flowing roofline towards the back there and up front you this really
big kind of clamshell hood lots of sculpting down the sides of this car the
Arteon it’s a really good-looking car especially for us at hand although
Volkswagen will tell you that it’s a coupe this vehicle that I’m driving
right now is the SEL premium r line version of the arty on and it comes with
a bit more sporty flourishes so you get you know this kind of unique bumper up
front that has more air inlets on the side it makes it look more aggressive
move to the back you get this very subtle kind of black lip spoiler and you
also get these very cool-looking 20-inch black wheels so the RT on you know even
though it’s priced more like a non luxury vehicle I think it actually
competes with luxury vehicles on style and it also competes on the interior as
well the first thing that you notice about the arch you know especially in
higher trim levels like this one is the quality of the mat erial so very good
real leather not leatherette on each of the seats and you also get real metal
trim pieces on the dashboard real metal trim gear down around the shifter and it
just looks and feels more like a premium car than kind of a basic car much like
there’s a lot of Audi in the exterior styling of the arty on there’s also a
lot of adding on the interior this screen and kind of setup down here
definitely reminds me of past items that I’ve been in similar to kind of like the
a5 Sportback that’s just instead of the screen being mounts up high it’s down
here a little bit in the dash but you know similar screen size this means
eight inches the screen in that car 8.3 inches you also get this twelve point
three inches display here in the instrument panel as
well so that’s kind of taken from Audi in the same way though it doesn’t really
have the same level of customized ability when it’s in the Volkswagen so
for instance you can’t put the satellite image or the earth in here but you can
expand the map size and it’s still a pretty useful way to set up the
instrument panel and make it more flexible the second thing that you’ll
notice about the Audion is it’s got a lot of interior space so this is the
spiritual successor to the Volkswagen CC as Volkswagen would call it and even
though it’s got a five inch longer wheelbase it’s only two inches longer
overall and the added length to the wheelbase really opens up the interior
so most of that length is actually gone to the backseat they’ve actually
actually has 40 inches of rear legroom and when you sit back there there’s a
lot of space between you in the front you with a seat push pretty far back as
I do when I drive this also has benefits in the cargo area so behind the rear
seats you have 27.2 cubic feet of cargo space and that actually expands out to
55 cubic feet with the back seats fold it down and that makes the arching on
kind of more like a wagon it’s got a lot of space in there when you drop those
seats and you can actually fit really long as well as taller objects because
instead of a trunk it has a lift back when the ariane was announced we
actually didn’t know exactly which of the power trains would make it into the
US version of the car but now that it’s here we know that it’s going to be the
turbocharged two-liter four-cylinder that volkswagen kind of uses up and down
the line up now in the already on it makes 268 horsepower and 258 pound-feet
of torque and it comes mated to an 8-speed automatic transmission not the
7-speed dual-clutch unit that you get in the GTI or the GL I actually think that
the RT on would benefit from having that dual clutch gearbox the a3 that’s in
here it isn’t bad per se it’s pretty smooth it’s smooth shifting but it
doesn’t shift as quickly and I think it kind of bogs the engine down when you’re
accelerating from a stop so when you’re at a stop you hit the gas pedal there’s
a bit of delay before the turbos really kick in and the car really gets moving
forward once you do get it in the power the engine provides plenty of power for
this vehicle even though this is a larger vehicle that truly remote does
pretty good work it’s just you know keeping it in the power that’s a bit of
a challenge one thing that Volkswagen didn’t nail
though with this car is a suspension so an adaptive suspension is standard on
all trims of the Arteon which is a pretty cool feature to get at this price
level another thing that I like about the suspension is its level
customizability so you you can actually choose a custom drive
mode that allows you to sort out things like the steering or the throttle
response to exactly how you like them and for the suspension instead of just
having a drop-down menu with a few settings to choose from you actually get
a slider so in the custom drive setting you can actually move this slider up and
down and mix it between comfort and sport to get it just the way you like it
I haven’t seen that featuring a car before and it gives it a level of
customization that I haven’t seen even in performance cars the Arteon suspension
is definitely dialed in for comfort rather than for a kind of sporty driving
dynamics and that does make it a very good grand touring car is the kind of
car that you’d want to drive for three hours if you had to really get somewhere
long but not quite as good in the canyons that being said though the
suspension does a very good job when you’re turning of mitigating body roll
so toss it into a corner you can actually feel the weight of the car
shift but by the time you exit the corner especially on those long kind of
banking corners the dimensions figured it out and you exit the car pretty flat
and pretty well-balanced and for a car like this that has all-wheel drive that
means you can put a good amount of power down on exit given that you’re in the
right gear I came away from the art and impressed with how much it looks rides
and feels like a premium or a luxury automobile now Volkswagen kind of saying
that this car is meant to compete with premium vehicles so we’re like the Buick
Regal and the Acura TLX and I can say comfortably right now that
the Rd on is a vehicle that I would take over both of those vehicles what walks
like it doesn’t mention though is that I think that the Arteon compares very
favorably to another car that Volkswagen makes and that would be the Audi a5
Sportback so the Audi a5 Sportback starts at $45,000 this Arteon and I’m
sitting in right now is pretty much fully loaded at $47,000 and at that
price I kind of think that I prefer the Arteon over the a5 Sportback now you
can’t get a few features on the a5 Sportback that you can’t get on the Arteon you can get a little bit nicer materials you can get a bit more
technology however to get those things you’re really gonna have to spend on an
a5 Sportback and at that mid $40,000 range I think that the Arteon offers you
more features it offers you a much larger more comfortable interior and the
driving experience between the two isn’t that different if I was a bit more agile
but the Arteon is more comfortable and it has a very good adaptive damping
system and I’ve come to like especially on roads like these
the 2019 Arteon goes on sale this month so keep an eye out for the dealerships
and for more information about the car head over to cars.com


Stinger is the better value here, and I wouldn't compare the Arteon to the AValon. I would instead compare it to a Buick Regal/GS and also the Acura TLX

Man looks amazing all the way around, but why the heck they put that analog watch/clock on the dash? What's the point of it? It contrasts with the rest of the contemporary interior that this car offers.

Looks great overall. The horizontal vents across the dash looks attractive UNTIL you look left of the steering column, where it dives at maybe 30* angle. How weird?

Hey – Come on ! This Arteon is just an inflated by form Passat , and hyperinflated price. Stinger is a nicer car to drive and feel. Also if you want pure looks in Europe we have the new Peugeot 508 with frameless windows and sleeker body .

Beautiful car but needs more motor. A six cylinder will make it a true grand touring machine. As is, it is very nice but overpriced.

I'll take the Kia Stinger, the reliability alone will do it. VW still have headaches when it comes to reliability.

I don't think I would buy this car however I can say it's a great looking car when you see it in person. It looks better than the Stinger.

Good job Mr. Wong. Don't know where they found you, but I'm glad they did. Great presentation. No contradictions. I like that. I hate in automotive reviews when someone says "oh the steering is okay". Then their driving enthusiastically and next tou hear " the steering is great". Thanks for not doing that.

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