I have driven my Passat for over 100,000 miles and here are some of the pros and cons. Pros: It's a good looking car. It's fuel economy is good....averaging around 45mpg. Best tankfull- 55mpg, worst- 41mpg, giving me a generous range of 650-700 miles. The build quality is as good as you should expect from a VW, the interior is hard wearing without being pretty, but then Germans do practical not pretty, which is what I wanted from this car. All in all I would say a very practical car that fits my needs well. Cons: Beware, when it goes wrong it's expensive. The unnecessary electronic handbrake would have cost me £700+ to fix at a dealer, a faulty ECU cost me £1500 and 11 days off the road, a fault with the electronic ingnition would have cost me £800+ to fix at a dealer. The ignition fault has had a recall in the USA but here VW refuse to admit that there's an issue! Even though the car cuts out whilst driving. If you search the VW forums you will find hundreds of similar cases relating to this issue but VW UK still buries it's head in the sand. When I called VW UK I was told because our safety laws differ from those in the USA, VW UK will not issue a recall for this fault. VW really needs to be careful on this issue, because it's famous build quality reputation is being eroded by the faults on this model. In conclusion- don't expect trouble free motoring, it'll cost you.
Simon Nock, West Sussex, November 9th 2012