New Sasol GTC cars set for thrills

The iconic Grand Prix Circuit will present a new challenge to the GTC drivers as they tackle the country’s fastest racetrack on June 16.

Suzuki’s new Swift hatch and sedan in SA

Suzuki kicks off its new model assault with an all new Swift hatchback and standalone sedan called the Dzire.

Reader's ride: VW Passat 1.8 TSI

2013-01-14 14:15


LONG-DISTANCE RELAXED CRUISER: Reader Conrad loves his Passat to bits and doesn't agree with the "boring" reputation the vehicle has garnered from some publications.

My wife and I have been on the lookout for a large SUV but due to budget constraints we decided to look at a large sedan instead.

I did my homework on the cars in the C-segment and felt the Volkswagen Passat’s design, price, quality and features made it the winner.


I got a good deal through Dirk Ellis Motors in Humansdorp on a 2011 model with 21500km on the clock. The vehicle is the 1.8TSI matched to the fantastic DSG gearbox. 

I bought it two weeks later and I still love this car!

The VW face on this car looks fantastic and it has a classy rear-end. This car stands out from a distance, even surrounded by other more expensive vehicles. My wife is very brand neutral, she really doesn’t care what it is and the Passat meets her approval.


The 1.8 turbo delivers 118kW/250Nm. This engine really punches above its weight as torque is readily available. The DSG allows normal, sport and a manual mode.

It’s like your own Playstation built-in as driving through some mountain passes proved to be an immense amount of fun. I believe this car has just the right amount of power - enough to overtake and see off slower traffic with ease but also not too much so that it's wasted.

Cruise control helps to keep the car down to reasonable speeds. The engine note has a very nice raspy sound as it picks up revs but never screams too loud.


It’s a proper relaxed cruiser, all quiet and calm inside. At the same time however this big sedan can be thrown through the corners at alarming speed and it stays stable and easy to control.

Feedback through the steering wheel is excellent. The car handles bumps and uneven surfaces in its stride and you feel cushioned from the road. It still has a sporty firmness.


Another great surprise was driving in the rain as the car feels steady and planted in wet conditions.
VW says it has claimed consumption of 7.0 litres/100km but only if driving gingerly. I’m averaging 8.5-9.0 litres/100km so far.


We love the ventilated seats in KZN!  The high-beam assist which “dims & brights” automatically when it detects light from the front, works like a charm.

The multi-function steering wheel feels fantastic in your hands. For me safety levels are important and this car comes with it all. It also has electronic parking brake and hill hold. Other features we enjoy is the massive boot (565 litres) and a two-point plug.

The only feature that I miss on the car is parking distance control, as it's difficult to park.


Unlike RPM’s Spike’s review of the car, it is not boring at all. This car is whatever you want it to be. A long-distance relaxed cruiser, racing up a mountain pass and having fun, it can do it all. It’s a good feeling seeing this car in my garage in the mornings!

Whether it's straight off the showroom floor or an old skedonk, email us your road test and we’ll publish it on Wheels24.
Read more on:    reader  |  drive  |  vw  |  road  |  wheels24  |  volkswagen  |  road test

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