2014 Volkswagen CC R Line
A Great Looker, But Value?
By Ron Amadon
DAMASCUS, MD. – This is one fine looking car as evidenced by the accompanying pictures – a sweeping fresh, modern exterior design, but not enough to turn off more conservative buyers.
However, that striking exterior style extracts some penalties. The low roof means those trying to enter or exit, especially those heading rearward, must do a bending exercise reminiscent of the “duck and cover” drill backed by educators (?) in schools years ago to “escape” nuclear destruction.
Two adults of shorter stature can get comfortable in the rear seats, but this is a four seater and not a five as advertised. Drivers will have a feeling of sitting low in relation to surroundings and despite the multiple seat adjustments I was never, in a week’s time, able to find that “just right” operating position.
The R line is essentially the base Sport model with 18 inch wheels and some exterior styling touches. It does include such nice touches as dual-zone automatic climate controls, rear air vents, and heated eight way power front seats with four way lumbar, navi, and iPod interface among other things.
But to get such things as a sunroof, keyless ignition/entry, leather, not vinyl clad seats, rearview camera, an upgraded navi system with a bigger screen one must shell out $37,395 base for the Executive edition plus $865 for shipping.
The test car had a 2.0-liter turbo four good for 200 horsepower and 207 lb-ft of torque that was matched to a six speed automated transmission. The four requires premium petrol, not unusual for a turbo. It is rated at 22-31 mpg and I came out at the combined EPA rating of 25. It was a very quiet runner on the interstates.
Handling was fine and the ride was just a touch on the firm side, yet well in line with other German sedans.
A 0-60 time of seven seconds was more than adequate for this type of car, but one must cope with a slight lag in response when quick acceleration is warranted. Then a bit of a jolt when it all comes together that might cause fidgety passengers to wonder what the driver was up to.
Upscale models are available with a 280 horsepower six that should produce more liner acceleration.
Some door seals in the test car obviously needed alteration. After a torrential downpour, large quantities of water came out of the bottom of all four doors when they were opened once the skies cleared yet the inside remained dry.
Where this car really fell behind the competition was in the all-important bang for the buck. There just was not much here for a bottom line of $35,025 and that matters when Hyundai and Kia are sparking sales with a long list of equipment on their comparable sedans.
Within the VW fold, the Passat remains a better value for the dollar, and upscale CC’s can start to encroach on Audi territory.