Compared with cheaper rivals such as the Ford Mondeo, the Passat has a really smart-looking interior. There’s a good variety of dense-feeling materials, and touches such as slick air vents and the small analogue clock make it look upmarket, so it betters even the Skoda Superb Estate, which is our favourite big family estate in part thanks to the decent perceived quality of its cabin.
Granted, low-end models with cloth seats can look a bit dour, but as you step up the Passat range and get a broader variety of contrasting trim highlights, and part-Alcantara seats from GT trim and up, it starts to feel really quite posh.
Regardless of trim, there’s a reassuring sense of solidity to everything, helped by superb fit and finish and well-damped switches.
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