Volkswagen Passat GTE reliability & safety
A strong safety score inspires confidence, but Volkswagen's traditional reputation for reliability has taken a bit of a knock in recent years
|Euro NCAP||Adult protection||Child protection||Safety assist|
|5 stars (2019)||85%||87%||76%|
The GTE version of the Volkswagen Passat GTE hasn’t specifically been crash-tested by Euro NCAP, but this generation of Passat received a five-star rating when initially evaluated on launch in 2014, and has retained that score in annual reviews, the most recent of which was in 2019. There are plenty of up-to-date safety systems in place in the GTE as standard, so it shouldn’t be a concern.
Volkswagen Passat GTE reliability & problems
As the latest Passat GTE is still fairly new, there aren’t any major concerns with reliability. The DSG gearbox has been cited as a problem point in other Volkswagen Group models, but this isn’t an issue specific to the GTE. In the 2020 Driver Power survey, VW finished 19th out of 30 manufacturers, so there’s room for improvement. Skoda, a close rival, came in fifth, so the ownership experience may be a concern for some buyers.
Safety is taken care of by an extensive suite of passive and active systems, including Volkswagen's ‘Travel Assist’ package, which bundles adaptive cruise control with lane-keeping assistance. The technology can adjust your speed when the posted limit changes, and can also use data from the sat nav to slow down for corners, roundabouts and junctions of its own accord.
We found this system to be smooth enough, but it does occasionally ask you to put your hands on the wheel even if they already are. Normal adaptive cruise control and lane-keeping assistance are both available as well if you prefer.
There’s also a system called Emergency Steering Assist, which automatically boosts the amount of steering at the wheels when it detects a sudden movement, helping you to avoid a crash.
In This Review
- 1VerdictThe VW Passat GTE saloon is an excellent plug-in hybrid, but it's neither the most practical nor the best value choice on the market
- 2Range, MPG, CO2 & chargingImpressive official numbers will be tough to replicate in the real world, but the VW Passat GTE is reasonably competitive with rivals in most respects
- 3Running costsRunning a VW Passat GTE should be very cheap, especially if you're a company-car user
- 4Engines, drive & performanceThe VW Passat GTE is smooth and comfortable, but powerful plug-in hybrid drivetrain means it's also pretty fast, if not very involving
- 5Interior & comfortLike all VW Passats, the GTE saloon boasts a classy and comfortable interior, and is generally well equipped
- 6Practicality & boot spaceAs the Passat is a four-door saloon, practicality isn't a speciality, and the GTE's hybrid battery pack doesn't help matters
- 7Reliability & safety - currently readingA strong safety score inspires confidence, but Volkswagen's traditional reputation for reliability has taken a bit of a knock in recent years