The 2020 Volkswagen Passat will go it alone, at least in terms of what's under its updated body.
Mike Lovati, VW's U.S.-market chief product planner for the Passat, told Motor Authority at the 2019 North American International Auto Show in Detroit that the Passat will move forward with only a 2.0-liter turbo-4, an 8-speed automatic transmission, and front-wheel drive.
"That's not in the planning right now," Lovati said on the sidelines of the Detroit auto show when asked about further configurations.
As recently as 2018, VW offered its 3.6-liter V-6 engine in the Passat. All-wheel drive and a manual transmission haven't been available in a few years, however.
VW's launch strategy for the 2020 Passat is unusual in that the first models in dealer showrooms this summer will have a lower-torque version of the turbo-4 engine than models that go on sale by the end of 2019. The Passat goes on sale in a special Limited trim level with a 2.0-liter turbo-4 rated at 174 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque. That trim level will give way later this year in favor of four trim levels with 207 lb-ft of torque instead, with the extra twist generated by recalibrations to the engine software.
As for a sporty version of the updated Passat in the vein of 2018's short-lived Passat GT with its buttoned-down suspension and unique steering tuning?
Lovati said, "we'll see."
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