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The Volkswagen Passat Alltrack is an excellent compact SUV alternative

9 May 2013

AUSTRALIANS love their SUVs. They’re often little more than jacked-up hatchbacks and wagons, but our appetite for them continues to grow.

Now, Volkswagen has expanded its own off-roader portfolio with a spin-off of its already well received Passat wagon range, called the Alltrack.

However, while most other so-called “soft-roaders” are better off stopping at the end of the bitumen, Volkswagen has built in some real ability to try and sway buyers away from other “softer” softies.

It’s a big ask, with several more ‘traditional’ SUVs well and truly ensconced in the market.

Mazda’s sharp CX-5 is storming up the sales charts with Toyota’s all-new RAV4 hot on its tail, while Honda’s CR-V isn’t far behind them, either, and Nissan’s ageing, but still popular, X-Trail is thereabouts.

Don’t forget Subaru’s Outback, either, which kicked off the whole mid-size wagon for a big country thing.

The Passat Alltrack’s problem is that, like the once-strong Outback, it doesn’t look like any of these high-riding, hatchback-styled class leaders that between them account for half of all the mid-size SUVs costing less than $60,000 that are rolling out of showrooms in Australia.

It’s a rough track for the Alltrack, and the Outback for that matter, to follow.


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Model release date: 1 October 2012 to 1 September 2015

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