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Which Volkswagen Passat makes the best company car?

  • We pick the Volkswagen Passat's best suited to your lifestyle
  • New Executive trim comes with some impressive standard kit
  • BlueMotion boasts excellent green credentials

The words Volkswagen Passat and company car go together like bread and butter, fish and chips and my own personal favourite: gin and tonic.

From January this year Volkswagen decided to simplify the Passat range, so now the trim line up consists of only four choices; S, BlueMotion, Executive and Executive Style with a choice of petrol and diesel engines available.

Picking the Volkswagen Passat that is best suited to your lifestyle yet has low enough tax costs and high enough fuel efficiency is a difficult balance to get right.

To help, we’ve picked our favourites from the line-up, highlighting those that make the most sense as a company car choice.

The ‘greenest’ choice - Volkswagen Passat 1.6 TDI BlueMotion

The word BlueMotion should be familiar to many Volkswagen fans now as it features in many popular Volkswagen models including the venerable Golf.  

Sitting above the entry S trim, the BlueMotion boasts a generous list of standard equipment, which means it's good value with its £21,270 price tag. Highlights include Bluetooth, manual air conditioning, DAB radio, electronic parking brake, leather interior touches, CD player with eight speakers and 16-inch steel wheels.

As it is a BlueMotion, unsurprisingly the car also comes with Start/stop technology that helps the car to achieve its impressive CO2 emissions of 109g/km.

These low emissions mean crucially that the Passat BlueMotion's tax bills are also very competitive sitting within a 16 percent BIK tax band (for the 2013/14 tax year). A 20 percent taxpayer will pay £56.72 per month for this car (with no optional extras) - not bad at all for a car of this size.

There is a slight caveat though and that comes from performance, this Passat is not very quick with a 0-62mph time of 11.8 seconds and only 103bhp available for pulling the car up to speed.  Fuel economy is good though with an official combined figure of 68mpg.

The ‘executive’ choice - Volkswagen Passat 2.0 TDI Executive

The new executive trim replaces the Highline model from the previous line up and comes with over £1,700-worth of added equipment over its predecessor for only a £200 price hike.

Standard equipment highlights that will be especially useful for company car drivers include 17-inch alloy wheels, DAB radio, Bluetooth, a touchscreen sat-nav system, leather interior elements, heated front seats, climate control, cruise control and rear parking sensors.

The engine of choice is the 2.0 TDI with 174bhp which has a 0-62mph time of 8.4 seconds and a top speed of 141mph while still managing to retain a respectable fuel consumption figure at 61.4mpg.

There is a lower powered 138bhp diesel engine available which costs £1,400 less but with only a 1g/km of CO2 reduction than the higher powered engine at 119g/km and surprisingly, the same official mpg figure as the higher powered diesel.

When it comes to monthly tax bills there around £8 between the two; the lower-powered diesel will cost you £70.98 while the 174bhp diesel will cost you £79.20 a month, so it really depends if you can justify the extra money for more performance.

We think it’s worth it, especially as the only reward for picking a lower powered model is 1g/km in CO2.