What is it?
So what's new?
The car itself is the same Passat we're all familiar with, but Volkswagen has chosen to enhance it with a host of luxurious trappings to tempt people from alternative executive choices.
It's realistic luxury though, so you won't be paying over the odds - more of which a few sections down. Instead, you get subtle, considered upgrades like a new set of 17-inch 'Michigan' alloys, exterior chrome trim and a set of black roof rails on the Estate model.
Sitting above the S and BlueMotion - with their standard DAB radio and USB/Bluetooth connectivity - you also get a touchscreen navigation system, a leather multifunction wheel, leather gear lever, heated leather seats and electric adjustment for the driver. Climate control, auto lights and wipers, cruise control and parking sensors also make an appearance.
Executive Style models add 15mm lower suspension, 18-inch 'Kansas' alloy wheels, front fog lights, bi-xenon headlights and tinted rear glass.
What's under the bonnet?
All the usual Passat powerplants. They kick off with the 160 PS 1.4 TSI petrol and rise to the 177 PS 2.0 TDI. A choice of manual or dual-clutch DSG transmissions is available for most engines, while the most economical option - the 1.6 TDI manual - manages 65.7 mpg in saloon guise and 64.2 mpg as the larger estate.
How much will it cost me?
Executive models begin at 22,545 for the 1.6 TDI. The 1.4 TSI costs 355 more, the 140 PS 2.0 TDI another 760 on top of that, and the top diesel starts at 25,010 with a manual gearbox.
Executive Style versions are 995 more than Executive cars regardless of engine, gearbox or body style.
DSG adds 1,500 to the petrols and 1,740 to diesels, while Estates cost 1,400 over their saloon equivalent. The Passat range as a whole begins at 20,235 for a saloon in S trim with the 1.4 TSI, 122 PS engine.
VW says the Executive models offer significant cost and equipment benefits over lesser models - the Executive throws in 1,700 of extra kit for just 200 more than the Highline model it replaces, while the Executive Style gives you two grand's worth of toys for the 995 you'll pay over regular Executive models. They all go on sale today, January 2.
Several - the Passat competes with everything from Ford Mondeos and Mazda 6s to cars like the BMW 3-Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class from the grade above - though it's worth noting you can get more Passat for your money than you can by spending the same cash on one of the more prestigious badges.
As far as comparisons go there are far too many trim and engine possibilities to list here, so your best bet is to head to our Car Chooser, set yourself a budget and see what turns up.
In a line?
No more exciting than before, but better value every day.