The Passat already has VW's reputation for engineering behind it, but with official safety scores and more standard safety equipment, it's an even easier choice for families this year.
All Passat sedans come with the mandatory safety and related equipment. That includes anti-lock brakes, traction and stability control; dual front, side and curtain airbags; and tire pressure monitors. A hill-holder feature is standard on vehicles outfitted with a manual transmission.
Both of the major reporting agencies give the current Passat excellent crash-test scores. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) rates the sedan at five stars overall, with five stars for both front and side impacts and a four-star rating for rollover resistance. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has given the Passat its new Top Safety Pick+ designation, with top 'good' ratings in most areas except the new small overlap frontal test, where it gets an 'acceptable' rating.
For this, its second model year, the Passat still lacks the advanced tech features becoming more common on other family sedans--new assistants like front and rear parking sensors, and blind-spot monitors. It does add a standard rearview camera on Passat SEL sedans.
Visibility is one of the Passat's strongest safety attributes. The large glass areas, fold-down rear headrests and slim roof pillars give drivers a nearly panoramic view of the world around them.