2019 Volkswagen Arteon First Drive: Aiming High

While the slick new Volkswagen Arteon isn't scheduled to arrive in the U.S. until sometime in 2018, our colleagues at Motor1-UK were given an early shot at the company's new flagship. Stay tuned for a U.S.-spec drive in the coming year.

 

Don’t mention the CCVolkswagen says the Arteon isn’t a replacement for this svelte sedan. Although, the Arteon fills something of the same brief, being very obviously a design-led statement, with rakish lines and that misnomer nomenclature of being a ‘four-door coupe’. It’s bigger than the Passat though, some two inches longer in wheelbase, the Arteon looking and feeling more Audi A6 in its dimensions, which is very deliberate.

That’s because Volkswagen in aiming high with it, as in, into new territories. This is a VW that very clearly sees the BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe and the Audi A5 Sportback as key rivals. Strong competition, both of which immediately start with the clear advantage of coming with recognised, upmarket premium badges.

Not that there isn't strength in VW’s brand – it's always been able to position itself a bit higher than the mainstream norm. But that’s some heavy-hitting status it’s competing with, so the Arteon needs to fight its corner very convincingly indeed.

2017 Volkswagen Arteon first drive
2017 Volkswagen Arteon first drive
2017 Volkswagen Arteon first drive
2017 Volkswagen Arteon first drive

We’re in it relatively early, pricing as yet unconfirmed, though the talk is of around £38,000 for the entry-level model at launch. That’s a lot, even factoring in the powerful engine choices, seven-speed dual-clutch transmission, and inevitable huge stan...