Diesel power comes from the 90bhp 1.9TDI engine and the variable geometry 110bhp unit found in the Audi A4 which averages 53.3mpg. Petrol powerplants range from the 100bhp 1.6, through the 125bhp 1.8, to the all-new 150bhp 2.3 VR5 five-cylinder. A 193bhp 30-valve 2.8 V6 will be available in the 4x4 Syncro - due in the UK next year.
Specification levels will be denoted by E, S, SE and Sport badges. Standard equipment on the E - available only with the 100bhp petrol - includes ABS, twin airbags, central locking, electric front windows, reach and height adjustable steering wheel and seatbelt pretensioners front and rear.
S adds electric mirrors and a split folding rear seat. SE includes 'comfort' seats, rear electric windows, trip computer, electric sunroof and remote central locking. Sport features sports seats, alloy wheels and aluminium dash trim. Air conditioning will be available in lieu of a sunroof for a small premium and an in-car navigation system and xenon headlights will be available at a later date.
Volkswagen wants to sell around 30,000 Passats a year in the UK, with the fleet sector expected to be the principal market. Prices have yet to be announced.