The CC fits into Volkswagen's lineup as the Passat's stylish, better-dressed brother. As the only four-door coupe in a crowded midsize class, it brings in the design of the Mercedes-Benz CLS at a far lower price. And for those of you wondering what its purpose is compared to the Passat, the CC is without a doubt one of the most attractive cars in its segment.
The CC serves as Volkswagen's flagship, and as such it comes loaded with the company's best equipment: Bluetooth, bi-xenon headlights, satellite radio, a touch-screen navigation system, heated power front seats, a leather-trimmed interior, and an available 10-speaker Dynaudio premium sound system. 4Motion all-wheel-drive and a dual-clutch automatic transmission are also available, and the R-Line package adds 18-inch wheels and a subtle body kit. Two engines are offered: VW's trusty 2.0T shared with the GTI, or a 280-horsepower 3.6-liter VR6 at the top of the range.
All of this style does come at a price, however. The CC is strictly a four-seater, and those two in the back will have less headroom than in the practical-minded Passat. The CC also starts higher than the Passat -- at $28,515, it's almost 10 grand more than the Passat's base price. Whether the CC is worth the premium depends on the customer's taste and willingness to sacrifice practicality for the chance to look sharp.
Engines: 2.0-liter turbocharged I-4, 3.6-liter V-6
Transmissions: six-speed manual, six-speed automatic, six-speed auto-clutch manual (DSG)
Models: Sport, R-Line, Lux, VR6 4Motion
VW streamlined some of the options packages for 2012 by dropping the VR6 Sport model. If you want the bigger engine, you'll have to spring for the top-of-the-line model with 4Motion and a Tiptronic six-speed automatic. There are three Lux models to choose from: Lux, Lux Plus, and Lux Limited, ranging from $31,420 to $34,365 based on how Sybaritic your options are. The 2.0T R-Line package is also new for 2012, which adds a new front bumper and other styling cues.
Low-slung, taut, and gorgeous, the Volkswagen CC is the best-looking car to come from a staid segment. Bold character lines and an arching roofline cause heads to turn even in jaded Southern California.
The Volkswagen CC's interior comes fully loaded with generous amounts of wood and aluminum trim, handsome two-tone leather seats, and even an analog clock for that extra touch of class. The rear seat only seats two and with that swooping roofline it can be cramped for taller passengers, but the scalloped 'buckets' are snug and comfortable.
Performance & Handling
The CC's driving dynamics are much sportier than those on the Passat, and VW's excellent turbocharged 2.0-liter engine is willing, responsive and allows for nimble handling by virtue of its light weight. Despite the CC's weight, the 2.0T is strong enough to hustle it to a 0-60 time of 6.8 seconds. For extensive freeway driving however, the 3.6-liter narrow-angle V-6 is a smoother choice -- even if it's only available with an automatic.
Standard driver and front passenger front and side-thorax airbags, front and rear side curtain head airbags. Optional rear passenger side-thorax airbags and standard traction control and stability control.
EPA Fuel Economy
Sport, Luxury: 22 mpg city (21 mpg manual)/31 mpg highway
VR6 Sport: 18 mpg city/27 mpg highway
VR6 4Motion: 17 mpg city/25 mpg highway
- Drop-dead good looks
- High-end build quality
- Sport/comfort ratio spot on
- Available all-wheel drive
You Won't Like
- Cramped rear seat
Strictly a four-seater
VR6 available only with automatic
Exotic style with a budget price
If You Like This Vehicle
- Audi A4
- BMW 328i
- Lexus IS
- Mercedes C-Class