GRR Garage: VW Passat Alltrack - the devil's in the details

23rd November 2017
Ben Miles

Never underestimate how obsessed one can become with one feature on a car. If you spend time in a vehicle that has a certain mod-con for long enough, you’ll find any other car that goes without it bare and wanting each time you step inside.


For one of our number (me) that single feature on our long-term Volkswagen Passat Alltrack is the heated seat. It’s a convenience that has been on several of our long-term testers over the last couple of years, but with the Passat furnished with that growing rarity these days, fabric seats, the warming of your posterior is particularly potent.

Leather seats are lovely, but if you jump in them on a freezing November morning they’re going to do their best to weld you to them, to chill your flesh so cold – even through clothes – that you and the car are to become one. Then you wait until the heaters have worked their way through the padding and leather and separated what once was skin and hide and has now become a singular entity halfway between the two.


But if you have cloth seats you’re already halfway there. Cloth is never too hot or cold to the extremes that leather readily reached. Instead, it’s retained some residual heat overnight while parked up awaiting the next of your daily meanderings. So, when you stick the heated seats on, bang, everything is good with the world again. Even if the climate control is taking a little time to reach its peak, you’re already there, coddled in the warm embrace of luxurious seating.

The Passat’s heaters are strong, able to tone it down when needed and always comfortable. Spoiled is what we are, and unfortunately, if you ask us to move on to anything without them, we’ll complain like the children that we really are. Please don’t take them away Volkswagen.

Mpg this week: 42.3.

  • GRR Garage

  • Volkswagen

  • Passat

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