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Parkers overall rating: 4 out of 5 4.0
Volkswagen Passat R36 (08-10) - rated 4 out of 5
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PROS

Sleek understated looks, very quick, excellent build quality, comfortable ride

CONS

Thirsty engine, not particularly exciting to drive, engine strangely muted

At a glance

New price £34,354 - £35,626
Used price £3,985 - £9,465
Used monthly cost £98 - £233
Fuel economy 28 - 28 mpg
Road tax cost £555
Insurance group 36 How much is it to insure?

PROS

Sleek understated looks, very quick, excellent build quality, comfortable ride

CONS

Thirsty engine, not particularly exciting to drive, engine strangely muted

Volkswagen Passat R36 rivals

Volkswagen is well known for its hot hatch Golf GTI, but when it comes to the Passat, practicality and reliability tend to be the attractions rather than performance. That's not the case with the R36 version. Available in both saloon and estate bodystyles it's powered by a 300bhp 3.6-litre V6 engine and uses a four-wheel drive system (called 4MOTION) to provide excellent traction.

There's no manual gearbox however - only a six-speed automatic DSG transmission which uses two clutches to deliver super fast gearshifts - and it certainly works, with the R36 able to accelerate from 0-62mph in less than six seconds. Thanks to a different suspension set-up it handles better than the standard Passat with sharp steering and strong brakes.

But while it's undoubtedly quick it's found wanting in terms of driver enjoyment.

Volkswagen Passat R36 rivals

Other Volkswagen Passat (2005 - 2011) models: