The Passat has spent its final few days with us and is now on its way back to Volkswagen.
It will be a tough act to follow, although we have swapped the car for an indisputable fleet favourite, the Volkswagen Golf.
We benchmark our long-term fleet cars against a matrix grid that takes into consideration all the key fleet criteria. So how did the Passat fare during its 12-month test?
Residual value forecasts from KeeResources put the Passat at 24% over four years/80,000 miles, up with the sector best.
Over the past year, our SMR costs were zero. Nada. Zilch. Perhaps we should expect that of a car in its first year and with less than 15,000 miles on the clock.
However, around 15% of the cars we take on long-term test develop a problem which necessitates a visit to the dealer, so it’s by no means guaranteed.
So far, so good. But it’s on fuel that the Passat really stands out. Its combined figure of 61.4mpg is well within reach – indeed the record achieved was just over 63mpg.
Mid-50s was a regular occurrence on shorter journeys, much better than other cars offering similar figures on paper.
Despite a P11D rise of £500 since we took delivery of the car in March last year, running costs have stayed more or less the same, at 35.96ppm over four years/80,000 miles. Few better it.
Drivers will be hit with slightly higher BIK bills compared to a year ago when we took delivery of the car due to changes in the BIK threshold (18% in 2013/14 versus 17% a year earlier) and the P11D price rise.
Basic rate taxpayers will now pay £843 over the course of a year, compared to £780 previously.
The Passat is an ideal fleet car, as recognised by the Fleet News Awards judges in 2012 when it took the upper-medium category.
Although an all-new version is due at the start of 2015, this model still has plenty to appeal to fleets and drivers alike.