Volkswagen Passat GT wants to be a GTI for grown-ups

171221-vw-passat-gt-139-copy

The GT version adds more than 100 horsepower to a base 2018 Passat, which starts at $23,845 and has a 2-liter, 4-cylinder turbocharged engine, generating 174 horsepower. It rides on a lowered suspension, its wheels are larger (19-inches), and its styling is a hint more boy-racer with requisite hints of red on the front fascia and the brake calipers.

The Passat GT will hit dealerships in the U.S. as part of a limited-run special model based off the R-Line trim.

VW kept the Passat's strong, if thirsty 3.6-liter V-6 and 6-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.

Volkswagen got a jump on the North American International Auto Show in Detroit by revealing the limited edition Passat GT on Friday, a new sporty trim level of the brand's upscale sedan. "Combining a local perspective with our global engineering expertise allows us to create vehicles that meet the needs and desires of customers here". The roof is black and so are the mirror caps, window, and door trim. In the Passat GT, the V-6 is rated at 280 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque and it sends power to the front wheels.

The new Passat GT was designed at Volkswagen's Engineering and Planning Center in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

LED headlights, optional on the R-Line are standard, and the GT has LED daytime running lights and blackened LED taillights. Buyers have a choice between Pure White, Reflex Silver, Platinum Grey, and Deep Black. The vehicle also receives GT badging in the grille, back of the auto and inside. The rear has a black spoiler and tinted LED taillamps, together with black trim on the bumper and a double exhaust with VW's acoustic package. Inside, the Passat GT features a piano black center console and vent trim, carbon fiber optic decor, black headliner, aluminum GT-badged sills, and black leather seats with Moonrock Gray inserts and contrast stitching.

There's also support for Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and MirrorLink. Standard interior features include an eight-way power driver's seat, heated front seats and dual-zone climate control.

Automakers can't just offer performance without some technological goodies. Passengers can be entertained with the Passat GT's Composition Media infotainment unit featuring a 6.3-inch touchscreen display, Bluetooth connectivity, and Voice Control.

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