Details of the Volkswagen Passat Alltrack have been announced – the Alltrack adds four wheel drive (4MOTION) to the current VW Passat. The 4MOTION system ensures that the front wheels are usually driven, with only 10 per cent of the power going to the wheels under normal conditions, which in turn saves on fuel. If necessary, almost 100 per cent of power can be sent to the rear axle, through use of an electro hydraulic Haldex clutch.
The Volkswagen Passat Alltrack has an off-road mode, similar to that on the Tiguan Escape. When switched on it activates hill descent assist, which automatically brakes the vehicle when the descent angle is greater than 10 degrees. The ABS function is also altered, with higher thresholds for operation on loose surfaces, along with faster-reacting electronic differential locks (EDS) to prevent wheelspin.
The ride height is raised to increase ground clearance for off road use and there are body enhancements that provide protection from scrapes. These include stainless steel-look front and rear underbody protection panels and flared side sills. Other features include matt chrome roof rails, window surrounds, grille and exterior mirror casings.
At 4,771 mm, the Volkswagen Passat Alltrack is exactly the same length as the current Passat Estate, and despite flared wheel arch protection the vehicle’s width also remains the same at 1,820 mm. The suspension is raised to increase ground clearance from 135 to 165 mm, which also improves the ramp breakaway angle (significant when crossing the crest of a hill) from 9.5 to 12.8 degrees. Ruggedly styled front and rear bumpers increase the approach angle from 13.5 to 16 degrees, and the departure angle from 11.9 to 13.6 degrees.
The VW Passat Alltrack will be available with either a 2.0-litre TDI 140 PS with six-speed manual gearbox or a 2.0-litre TDI 170 PS with six-speed DSG transmission. Standard equipment will include Alcantara upholstery, 2Zone electronic climate control, cruise control, tyre pressure monitoring system, MDI iPod connectivity, Bluetooth telephone preparation and 18-inch alloys.
The Volkswagen Passat Alltrack is due to be released to the UK in April 2012 with first deliveries expected in July 2012.Published 24 November 2011