Volkswagen CC review
The four-door Volkswagen CC is a great cruiser, with efficient engines and enough kit to compete with more expensive rivals
The Volkswagen CC was unveiled at the LA Motor Show at the end of 2011, and is a facelited version of the Passat CC. The four-door coupe has now dropped the Passat name to help mark it out as a separate model - while the Passat rivals the Audi A4, the CC targets cars like the A5 Sportback and BMW 3 Series Coupe. Visual changes include a new chrome grille, bi-xenon headlights with LED daytime running lights and a more upmarket interior. There's lots of clever new safety features, too, including a system that detects when the driver is tired and another that keeps the VW CC in its lane on the motorway. It is expensive to buy, but there are a range of efficient engines and every model comes with lots of equipment.
Our choice: CC 2.0 TDI BlueMotion Tech
The facelifted VW CC gets a more upmarket chrome grille, a smarter lower bumper and bi-xenon headlights complete with LED daytime running lights. The sides are now more heavily scalloped, while at the rear the CC’s lights have been swapped for new LEDs. On the inside, there’s a new Phaeton-style analogue clock on the dashboard and optional brown trim. Entry-level cars come with 17-inch alloy wheels, Bluetooth, automatic wipers, front sports seats and dual-zone air-con. Top spec cars get 18-inch alloys, heated front seats, cruise control, front and rear parking sensors and black Nappa upholstery. Special seats are available with a massage function and buyers can also specify an ‘easy open’ system, which pops the boot if the owner waves his leg under the rear bumper.
The engine line-up is borrowed from the Passat, and consists of a 158bhp 1.8-litre TSI turbocharged petrol, a 138bhp and 168bhp 2.0-litre turbodiesel, and a 207bhp 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol. A flagship 296bhp 3.6-litre V6 with four-wheel drive is due to join the line-up later. The entry-level petrol produces 250 NM of torque, can go from 0-62mph in 8.5 seconds and has a top speed of 139mph. The 138bhp 2.0 TDI with BlueMotion Technology should be quick enough for most people's needs, with 320 NM of torque, a 0-62mph time of 9.8 seconds and a top speed of 133mph. Adaptive dampers come fitted as standard to top-spec GT cars, which allows the suspension to be changed between Comfort, Normal and Sport. The steering doesn't offer much feedback so the CC isn't very exciting to drive, but the ride is comfortable and it is a good cruiser.
The standard Passat has a full five-star Euro NCAP crash test rating. Standard safety kit on the CC includes ABS, ESP and driver, passenger, side and curtain airbags. VW introduced new safety features at the beginning of 2012, including fatigue detection – which warns the driver if he or she is nodding off at the wheel – active head restraints, a blind spot warning system and a system that keeps the VW CC in its lane on the motorway. Other gadgets include automatic adjustment for the headlight beams and a system that recognises road signs and displays them on the dashboard. It's too early to judge the VW CC's long-term reliability but the standard Passat finished a disappointing 71st in the 2012 Driver Power Top 100.
The VW CC has an useful 452 litres of boot space. Split-folding rear seats are standard - and the one-touch switches in the boot means folding them is a doodle. Access to the boot is a bit tight, though, due to the small opening. The Passat CC was originally only a four-seater, but this facelifted version is now only offered with five seats - although the middle seat is a cramped at best. There's plenty of leg and headroom up front but the low roofline means taller rear seat passengers will find their heads scraping the roof lining. There is a decent amount of storage space in the cabin, including a cooled glovebox.
The 138bhp 2.0 TDI with BlueMotion Technology provides the lowest running costs, with average fuel economy of 60.1mpg and CO2 emissions of 120g/km (or 53.3mpg and 134g/km for the DSG 'box). The more powerful diesel also offers decent efficiency, with figures of 57.6mpg and 125g/km of CO2. The petrols aren't very fuel efficient: the 1.8-litre petrol returns 39.8mpg and 164g/km, while the 2.0 TSI can only manage 38.7mpg and 169g/km of CO2 (or 36.2mpg and 179g/km).