The 2014 Volkswagen CC brings a new 2.0T Executive trim level that includes a navigation system with trials for SiriusXM Traffic and TravelLink, keyless access with push-button start, leather upholstery, a sunroof, a backup camera, ebony interior trim, eighteen-inch "St. Louis" wheels, and an available Truffle Brown interior palette. 2013's CC Sport with Lighting Package is now simply called the 2014 Volkswagen CC Sport, which includes LED daytime running lights with swiveling headlamps, navigation, and a backup camera. Volkswagen's Car-Net telematics system (similar to General Motors' OnStar) is available on all CC models...
Volkswagen introduced the CC in 2008 as an extension of the Passat range. (It was originally called the Passat CC.) The stylish four-door capitalized on the then-new trend of "four-door coupes" pioneered by the Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class, and the VW was the first -- and remains the only -- such offering from a mainstream automaker in the U.S. The car's exterior designer, Oliver Stefan, said in 2009 that Volkswagen wanted to create an "emotional, elegant-looking, dynamic car;" the CC excels at all three of those attributes.
After four years on sale, Volkswagen gave the CC a face-lift to bring the four-door coupe's aesthetics more in step with the new familial design language. Revised front and rear fascias brought more angular shapes, with LED front running lights and rear taillights, a wider grille, and a sleeker rump. The face-lift also brought minor upgrades to the cabin. Mechanically, the 2014 Volkswagen CC mirrors the 2006-2010 Passat, offering either a 2.0-liter turbo four-cylinder or a 3.6-liter six-cylinder.
The 2014 Volkswagen CC offers the sporty dynamics, exceptional interior, and premium feel that are Volkswagen hallmarks. The base engine is the brand's excellent 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder. Its refinement and power make it as good as the V-6s from many of its competitors, and it gets better fuel economy. The turbo four is good for 200 hp and is rated at 21/32 mpg city/highway with the six-speed manual or 22/31 mpg with the six-speed dual-clutch automatic. If you insist on a six-cylinder, Volkswagen offers a 280-hp V-6 that's full of personality and has plenty of punch. Its 17/25-mpg rating isn't nearly as good as the competition's, however. Also a demerit for the CC: both the four- and six-cylinder engines require premium gasoline.
A six-speed manual transmission is standard with the 2.0T; the optional six-speed automatic is a dual-clutch unit, meaning shifts are quicker and more direct than a conventional automatic. It's a great gearbox, particularly in a sporty car, but comfort-minded buyers might be turned off by its clunkiness in stop-and-go traffic. All-wheel drive and a torque-converter automatic transmission are standard with the six-cylinder.
The sloping roofline makes the 2014 Volkswagen CC a four-door "coupe" in the vein of the Mercedes-Benz CLS and restricts rear-seat headroom. Last year, Volkswagen caved to customer demand and added a third seat in back, but the car is barely large enough to hold a fifth person for more than a short jaunt. Even if the CC is filled to capacity, all passengers will appreciate the high-end cabin tastefully appointed in attractive color palettes -- our favorite is the desert beige/black two-tone, although the all-black interior is quite appealing, too. The slinky shape gives up nothing in the safety department, either: the CC is rated a Top Safety Pick by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
With the Passat's transformation into an affordable mid-size sedan, the 2014 Volkswagen CC might not appear to be the value that it actually is. We love it because it embodies the Volkswagen character that we cherish.
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