Volkswagen Arteon 2017: A new flagship saloon is on its way
Premium fastback is 'very refined', but can it tempt buyers away from BMW and Audi?
Volkswagen is taking on the premium executive saloon market later this year with its new Arteon fastback – and many critics are already giving it the thumbs-up.
The Arteon, which made its public debut earlier this year at the Geneva Motor Show, will enter Volkswagen's line-up above the mid-range Passat and become the company's flagship car.
The Arteon sits on the firm's MQB production platform, known for spawning the Skoda Kodiaq and the Seat Ateca, which Evo says "allows for a selection of transversely-mounted four-cylinder petrol and diesel engines".
Buyers will be able to choose from a range of power outputs, says the magazine, including a 148bhp 2.0-litre diesel unit and a range-topping 276bhp 2.0-litre petrol engine. The company's 4Motion all-wheel drive system "also comes as standard with the most powerful petrol and diesel engines'.
The Arteon looks set to become the most expensive five-door car in the Volkswagen range, but can it really compete with the established leaders of the premium saloon market?
Here's what the reviewers are saying:
Volkswagen has stretched the Arteon's wheelbase to allow for as much interior space as possible, which Autocar says offers "more than enough legroom for a couple of larger adults to sit in the back quite comfortably".
One of the Arteon's best features is the sheer amount of technology available. The magazine says buyers can spec a 9.2ins touchscreen infotainment system and the Volkswagen Golf's digital instrument panel.
Despite riding on 20ins alloy wheels "wrapped in a slither of rubber", AutoExpress says the Arteon's ride quality is composed and comfortable over smoother road surfaces. This could be a result of "the bespoke damper system developed exclusively for this car".
"Potholes are its undoing", says the magazine, as driving over one will produce a "noticeable thump that makes its way through to the cabin".
The car's 2.0-litre diesel bi-turbo engine "is an incredibly strong motor", but AutoExpress says the Arteon's claimed fuel economy of 47.8mpg isn't as good as the BMW 430d xDrive's 51mpg.
Autocar concludes that the Arteon is clearly a "very refined" and "sophisticated" five-door fastback. Those looking for more "excitement" from a premium German car may want to check out the BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe and Audi A5 Sportback.
Prices have yet to be announced, but the magazine says the Arteon will cost around £38,000 and go on sale in October.