Volkswagen is boosting the popular Passat and Passat Estate ranges with the addition of a new model, the Highline, which replaces the best-selling SE model.  Over the already generous equipment list of the Passat SE, the Highline adds an RNS 315 touchscreen satellite navigation unit, front and rear parking sensors, 2Zone climate control and stylish 17-inch ‘Sao Paolo’ alloy wheels.  Together, they add £1,680-worth of value, yet the Passat Highline commands a premium of just £500 over the SE, with prices starting at £20,970 (RRP OTR) for the 1.4-litre TSI 122 PS.

The Passat and Passat Estate come as standard with a host of options to make driving safer and more comfortable, including a Driver Alert System that monitors for signs of fatigue, DAB digital radio and Bluetooth.  The Passat Highline also features cruise control, a flat tyre indicator, auto-dimming rear-view mirror and a six-way electrically adjustable driver’s seat with lumbar support.

The RNS 315 touchscreen satellite navigation system, previously a £750 option, includes a full-colour screen and traffic monitoring.  As with all media systems in the Passat, it also features a multi-device interface, to allow connection of MP3 players and iPods (there is also a built-in Bluetooth music streaming facility, for those who prefer wireless links).

Front and rear parking sensors, previously £430, offer both an audible and visual guide (via the screen of the RNS 315), and also mean that Volkswagen’s Park Assist system, which allows the Passat to park itself in spaces parallel or perpendicular to the road, is now available as a great-value £195 option.

A 2Zone climate control system (worth £500) allows precise control of the temperature of each side of the cabin, down to half-degree increments.  The driver and front seat passenger simply select the desired temperatures and the system automatically regulates the heating, air conditioning and air flow to achieve these.

The Passat Highline and Passat Estate Highline are available with a range of engines including 1.4-litre TSI 122 PS and 1.8-litre TSI 160 PS petrols, and 1.6-litre TDI 105 PS and 2.0-litre TDI 140 PS diesels.  Gearboxes include five- and six-speed manuals and six- and seven-speed DSG units.  The Passat Highline can be ordered from Volkswagen Retailers now, with some vehicles in stock for immediate delivery.  The Passat range starts at £20,970 on the road.