2019 Volkswagen Arteon review. New flagship sedan is impressive

By Auto reviewman

Volkswagen’s new flagship four-door Arteon is a new offering that offers a tempting path to the entry -level luxury segment class. And, it looks like Volkswagen may have a winner on their hands. The Arteon is a handsome, stylish sedan in the traditional three-box format. It’s a tad groovier that the conservative Passat with its sleek front end sculpted haunches. The Arteon is based on Volkswagen’s versatile transverse MQB architecture that underpins such other VW models. The only available powertrain for the now is f Volkswagen’s corporate 2.0L TSI turbocharged inline four-cylinder engine. It puts out 268 horsepower and 258 lb-ft. of torque.  The sole transmission is an eight-speed automatic with Tiptronic, Volkswagen’s excellent 4MOTION all-wheel-drive system is as standard equipment for Canadian models.

Pricing for the 2019 Arteon starts at $47,995 in Canada, with two available packages. A $2,095 Driver Assistance Package which adds lane assist, park assist, and a 360-degree view camera system. A $2,995 R-Line Package comprising: 20” wheels, exterior design accents, an R-Line steering wheel with paddle shifters, and upgraded unique interior trim. A fully loaded Arteon comes in at a shade over $53,000. We tested a sleek looking Chilli Red Execline model with a delightful interior trim made up of light grey and dark grey with light accent stitching.  Options on our tester included the Driver Assistance package ($2,095) and the R-Line package ($2,995). For a total cost of $53m085 including PDI.  Highlights on our tester included: 18 inch Almera wheels with Adamantium dark finish, and a Panorama sunroof. The R-Line package featured: Aluminum door sills with the R –Line logo, R – Line exterior design package and R –Line heated leather multifunction steering wheel with paddle shifters  

The Arteon interior is accessed by big doors front and rear allowing easy ingress and exit. There is a rather nicely appointed cabin with a cool “Dayton” brushed aluminum trim interior on the dash and doors. Opt for the Nappa leather and it’s a sumptuous luxury look. The instrument gauge cluster takes on elements of Audi’s Virtual Cockpit, with digital instrumentation, while an eight-inch touchscreen takes care of the infotainment. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity is present, along with Volkswagen’s proprietary apps.  The driver’s seat is very comfortable with 12 way adjust for the driver, 4 way lumber support function, and a neat massaging system. There is three-zone climate control, a 700W Dynaudio sound system, with Sirius XM, and satellite navigation and an analog clock up front. Technology and safety wise, adaptive cruise control, pedestrian monitoring, and dynamic headlights are also all standard issue. The optional Driver Assistance package adds: Area View 360 parking, Lane Assist Guidance and Park Assist.  The rear cabin is also nicely outfitted, with a roomy, adult friendly seats that fold 60/40 and feature a center armrest and pass through. Ambient interior lighting, with footwell lights also rounds off a pleasant airy interior

In terms of driving dynamics, the Arteon is helped by features such as Volkswagen’s Dynamic Chassis Control, which adjusts the damping and suspension for either “Sport”, “Comfort”, and “Normal” modes.  There is smidge of turbo lag on standing acceleration, evened out by a smooth surge of torque low down in the tach that makes itself evident. The Arteon comes up to speed very well and the eight-speed automatic with the Tiptronic function is a smooth unobtrusive unit. The Arteon is fairly quick and the transverse MQB architecture offers a rigid platform.  However, don’t expect the delightful sporty drive of the Golf GTI! The big Arteon drives like a premium sedan- with its direct steering and serene cornering. No drama here. Traction is good with a safe, confident feel thanks to the 4MOTION all-wheel-drive system. Nothing much to complain about. The Arteon does have its work cut out against the competitions as an alternative   premium sedan. It may not be as fast or sporty as some its rivals, but in its favour has a more comfortable, less jarring ride and precise faithful Volkswagen road manners. It compares favourably with entry level BMW 3-series, and the Mercedes-Benz C-Class. It is also priced very well. A very well executed premium sedan that is worth test driving.

2019 Volkswagen Artegon priced from $47,995. More info at www.vw.ca