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Volkswagen Passat vs Vauxhall Insignia

October 15, 2015 by

The qualities of a great company car are as follows – classy and understated looks, punchy yet economical engines, high quality interiors, enough space to carry all your gear and the ability to cruise down the motorway without the need to raise your voice.

The Volkswagen Passat and Vauxhall Insignia provide everything you’d expect and so are cars which you can rely on in order to conduct your daily business and go about your daily lives without any undue hassle. So out of the two, which deserves your hard earned cash?

Put either the Volkswagen Passat or the Vauxhall Insignia in our car configurator to see how much carwow could help you save. Both are also offered in estate form – read our reviews of the Volkswagen Passat Estate and the Vauxhall Insignia Sports Tourer.

Volkswagen Passat vs Vauxhall Insignia styling

Both the Passat and Insignia are classy looking cars but they go about the manner in slightly different ways. The Passat takes influence from typical German designs with lots of straight, angular edges with a prominent chrome grill. The Insignia is designed with more curved lines and unusual shapes making it the more flamboyant to look at and, ultimately, the less intimidating when sat in your rear-view mirror.

Overall, the Passat appears to be the more upmarket machine thanks to its solid styling and that prestigious Volkswagen badge. The Insignia will probably suit the more extroverted among you with its swoopy roofline, gurning grille and stylised headlights.

Volkswagen Passat vs Vauxhall Insignia interior

Between the two, it’s the Passat that comes out on top for interior quality. The Passat uses some of the finest quality plastics in the segment coupled with a design that’s extremely easy to use. It’s also comfortable thanks to the ergonomically designed seats which specifically focus on comfort.

The Vauxhall Insignia is still a very nice place to sit. With the facelift back in 2013, the interior has focused on a more minimalist design with the introduction of a large colour touchscreen and a reduction in the button count. Material quality is impressive but they marginally lag behind those used in the Passat.

Both cars have plenty of space for five passengers, although the Insignia can be tight for rear headroom though. They’re both available in estate body styles if you require extra levels practicality.

Volkswagen Passat vs Vauxhall Insignia practicality

Thanks to the Passat’s longer wheelbase, its boot is extremely large and bests the Insignia’s. The Passat saloon holds 586 litres and 650 litres in the Estate. The Insignia, in comparison, holds 530 litres in the saloon and 540 litres in the estate. Both offer the ability to fold the seats down to create even more room.

Volkswagen Passat vs Vauxhall Insignia engines

The biggest difference under these cars’ bonnets is that the Passat isn’t available with any petrol engines. The Insignia has a choice of four ranging from a 1.4-litre to a 2.8-litre turbocharged V6 producing 321hp exclusively available for the VXR model.

The biggest sellers for both will be powered by diesel engines and, on that basis, they’re both very impressive. Even the least economical unit in the Passat returns 67.3mpg on average and the highest manages a whopping 76.3mpg. All the Insignia’s diesel engines can achieve over 60mpg on average with the most efficient achieving around 75mpg.

Volkswagen Passat vs Vauxhall Insignia driving

The Passat has a velvet-smooth ride that’s extremely comfortable and its excellent sound deadening keeps wind noise and tyre roar down to a minimum. The Insignia is fairly comfortable in its own right but, against the Passat, it doesn’t quite have the same composure when the road surface worsens. Passengers in the back of the Insignia are treated to a particularly bad ride over very poor surfaces that’s neither able to float over imperfections nor absorb bumps with composure.

Neither the Passat nor the Insignia are as entertaining to drive as the Mazda 6 or even the new Ford Mondeo. That said, both are more suited to motorway mile-munching where their inherent stability and grip makes them very relaxing to drive. Both are available with four-wheel drive, should you live in an area that gets especially cold winters.

Volkswagen Passat vs Vauxhall Insignia verdict

On the whole, the Passat is the more luxurious vehicle and therefore the nicest to live with on a day-to-day basis. It’s available with some very economical engines and an interior that you’d happily spend time in on the Monday morning commute. It’s also marginally the more practical choice making it better for families.

If you find the Passat just a little too conservative, however, the Insignia is a good alternative. It offers pretty much everything the Passat offers but for a cheaper price. Plus, if you want a petrol engine, the Insignia is your only choice.

Save money on your Volkswagen Passat or Vauxhall Insignia

Put either the Volkswagen Passat or the Vauxhall Insignia in our car configurator to see how much carwow could help you save. Alternatively, if neither of these cars are what you’re looking for, head over to our car chooser or deals page to find the car that suits you.