Arteon Shooting Brake adds glamour to VW's lineup

  • Mid-life refresh for VW’s sleek executive range
  • Stunning Shooting Brake should boost appeal
  • More tech and spec also likely to lift sales

Volkswagen Arteon (2020) Shooting Brake and Coupe

Volkswagen has pulled the wraps off its revitalised Arteon range, which includes the addition of a second bodystyle – a Shooting Brake. As can be seen from the accompanying photos, both the five-door coupe and its sporting estate-style cousin have knocked it out of the park on looks alone.

What even is a Shooting Brake?

Volkswagen is enjoying a touch of whimsy and is employing an old-fashioned British term for a sports estate, typically based on a coupe. In truth, that’s what it is: the Arteon is a sleek five-door coupe derived from the Passat, and the Shooting Brake is the spacious new addition to the range. Mercedes-Benz employs a similar strategy with the four-door CLA Coupe and its roomier Shooting Brake twin.

Just like its Shooting Brake forebears, this one is a handsome beast, which should attract plenty of buyers who need something glamorous looking, but with practicality built in.

The rest of the styling is largely untouched. All models receive new LED headlamps, a reprofiled radiator grille with new daytime running lights (DRLs) and updated LED rear lights. It's not a massive package of changes, but there was little wrong with the Arteon's styling as it was.

Volkswagen Arteon (2020) Shooting Brake front view

What's it like inside?

It's all about the dashboard and infotainment. All Arteons get a 10.25-inch digital instrument cluster as seen elsewhere in the Volkswagen range, and there's a choice of 8.0-inch or 9.2-inch infotainment screens. All models get voice control, and the option of being able to use their smartphone to open and start the car.

Inside, it's very much a case of reflecting the tech that first appeared in the Touareg, and which has made it to the new Golf Mk8. So there are touch-sensitive controls for the climate control system while the optional 700-watt Harman/Kardon stereo system should keep music lovers happy.

Volkswagen Arteon (2020) interior

Flagship Arteon R boasts 320hp

But there's more to this facelift than the arrival of the new Shooting Brake. There are new R versions of both cars that pack a 2.0-litre turbo that has served so well in the Golf R and Cupra Ateca among others. With 320hp and 420Nm of pulling power, and four-wheel drive, the fast Arteon promises to be very capable indeed.

To cope with the additional power, the Arteon R gets lowered suspension, adaptive dampers and new 20-inch alloy wheels. You'll also know it's an R because of its subtle bodykit with a deeper front bumper, reprofiled rear and quad exhaust pipes.

What this means for you

The Arteon was always a good-looking contender, and this package of improvements, plus the arrival of the Shooting Brake certainly increase its appeal. The big news is the arrival of the Arteon R, which if the success of the Golf is anything to go by, should see it challenging the premium players, such as the BMW 3 Series, Audi A4 and Mercedes-Benz C-Class, as well as some of the more left-field choices like the Jaguar XE and Alfa Romeo Giulia.

Parkers will be among the first to drive the upgraded Volkswagen Arteon range, so keep this page bookmarked for the latest news and views.

Volkswagen Arteon (2020) Shooting Brake

Further reading

>> We look at the best hybrid-powered SUVs

>> Rating the cream of the coupe crop

>> Find out how much your car is worth with a Parkers valuation