Volkswagen certainly isn’t sitting idly by after dieselgate. It will unveil its new Atlas SUV at the Los Angeles Auto Show this week and now it’s also teasing a souped up Passat it will bring to the show as well.
VW calls the Passat GT concept the most “aggressive” Passat yet. It differs from a standard Passat with over 20 design tweaks. Those include lowering the suspension by 0.6-inches. Other small touches include a special grille, fascia, and accents.
GT might bring to mind a whole new sportier engine. However, the model carries the same 3.6-liter V6 offered in the standard 2017 model. The engine has 280-horsepower. It pairs to six-speed DSG dual-clutch automatic transmission. The lower suspension and the added sport exhaust and muffler add the needed push for the GT feel.
Other details make the GT pop. It gets a black honeycomb grille with red accent lines, black window surrounds, a black roof and rear spoiler. The front and rear use LED headlights and smoked taillights. Its brake calipers are red to carry on the theme from the grille. The 19-inch wheels use VW’s Tornado design.
Sitting pretty on the inside includes a bunch of added carbon-fiber in the door trim and instrument panel. The seats feature a sporty design with black-and-gray upholstery and contrast stitching. Oh and of course for that refined sporty feel are paddle shifters on the steering wheel.
The concept GT was created by the VW Engineering and Planning Center in Chattanooga, Tenn. This is the same location that the North American Passat has been manufactured at since 2011.
VW doesn’t say when the GT will join the Passat family. All VW commits to now are the GT concept as a potential addition. It would make a great option to attract a different type of customer after the disaster of the previous popular TDI version.
This year alone Passat sales have dropped 17 percent. The drop can be attributed to a couple of things though. There has been a drop of midsize sedan sales of 13 percent, with the rise of the SUV crossover, and of course the confusion around the diesel scandal.