Used Vehicle Review: Volkswagen Passat CC, 2009 2012 volkswagen used car reviews
Used Vehicle Review: Volkswagen Passat CC, 2009 2012 volkswagen used car reviews
Used Vehicle Review: Volkswagen Passat CC, 2009 2012 volkswagen used car reviews
2009 Volkswagen Passat CC. Click image to enlarge

Review by Justin Pritchard

Vehicle Type: Sedan

History/Description: Even if Volkswagen would prefer if you called it a ‘coupe’, the four-door Passat CC amounted to a sleeker, more stylistically passionate version of Volkswagen’s flagship sedan. With a lower roofline, stretched greenhouse and more graceful, swoopy lines than the more conventional Passat sedan, the CC, or ‘Comfort Coupe’ offered four or five seats and a decent trunk wrapped in styling cues that wouldn’t look out of place in a two-door coupe.

Designed for elegance and an upscale, sophisticated look, the Passat CC was offered as an affordable head-turner that called to mind big-dollar four-door coupes from Benz and BMW, but with a more digestible price.

Feature content, depending on the model you’re selecting, may include rain-sensing wipers, automatic climate control, a power rear sunshade, Bluetooth interface, navigation, a large glass sunroof (it only vents, it doesn’t slide open), heated seats and more.

Note that many used CC models in the marketplace are four-seaters, though VW made a five-seat model available via an optional three-person rear bench seat.

Engines / Trim: Standard on Passat CC was a 2.0L, direct-injected turbocharged engine with 200 horsepower. The majority of models in the used market will have this powerplant, typically dubbed ‘2.0T’. This drives the front wheels via a six-speed manual transmission, though a sophisticated Dual Clutch Gearbox (DSG) was available.

The DSG transmission uses a computer-controlled dual-clutch setup to enhance power delivery, reduce fuel consumption and increase performance. With this transmission on board, drivers can benefit from totally automatic operation, as well as the excitement of a high-speed, paddle-shift manual-mode which is entertaining. If you can shift your own gears, go with the manual.

Also available was a 280 horsepower V6 engine that came standard with an automatic transmission and Volkswagen’s 4Motion All Wheel Drive (AWD) system and a conventional six-speed automatic transmission. No V6 and manual transmission combination was available, and neither was a four-cylinder AWD variant.

What Owners Like: CC owners typically rave about a comfortable interior, plenty of creature comforts, a high-dollar feel and smooth, quiet ride. A sense of pride, expensive looks and styling are also highly rated, and most owners say performance is more than adequate, especially with the V6 engine on board.

What Owners Dislike: Some owners wish for more rear-seat room, better outward visibility and a fully-functional moonroof, as the factory unit only tilts and doesn’t slide. Some find the navigation system fussy, too. Finally, taller drivers wish for more headroom, blaming the low roofline. For heftier guys and gals, entry and exit may prove a little tight.

Used Vehicle Review: Volkswagen Passat CC, 2009 2012 volkswagen used car reviews Used Vehicle Review: Volkswagen Passat CC, 2009 2012 volkswagen used car reviews Used Vehicle Review: Volkswagen Passat CC, 2009 2012 volkswagen used car reviews
2009 Volkswagen Passat CC. Click image to enlarge

Some owner reviews on www.autoTRADER.ca

The Test Drive: When test-driving a Passat CC, a few checks should be considered mandatory.

Ensure the engine operates smoothly at idle, and at light, moderate and full throttle while driving. Hesitation or lumpy power delivery, possibly accompanied by a check-engine light, could be the result of one or more faulty ignition coil packs, which fire the vehicle’s spark plugs. Volkswagen ignition coil packs have failed to earn a reputation as a reliable component, though they’re relatively inexpensive and simple to fix if you’re dealing with the four-cylinder engine.

<Used Vehicle Review: Volkswagen Passat CC, 2009 2012 volkswagen used car reviews
2009 Volkswagen Passat CC. Click image to enlarge

An easy way to tell if the CC you’re considering may be suffering from intermittent coil-pack issues is to have a VW mechanic scan the car’s computer brain. A bad coil pack can cause a misfire which the computer logs. Hidden misfire codes likely mean you’ll need to replace one or more coil packs.

Have a mechanic inspect under the CC’s hood for signs of leakage – particularly for leakage of oil from the turbocharger, and leakage of coolant from the water pump. These issues aren’t reported with alarming frequency, though they’re worth checking into.

Any shifting issues on a model with the DSG transmission could be caused by a faulty mechatronics unit, which controls the advanced gearbox. Keep alert for signs of slippage, hard shifting, slamming into or out of gear, or excessive slack as the clutches engage during throttle application. Note that updated software, available at a VW dealer, can be uploaded into the transmission’s computer brain to enhance refinement and drivability. Many owners say the updated ‘DSG Firmware’ makes a positive difference – so if the CC you’re considering has this transmission, ask your local VW dealer to check into the updates.




About Justin Pritchard

Justin Pritchard is a full-time auto writer, consultant, broadcaster and AJAC member based in Sudbury. When not writing about the latest new models and industry trends, you'll probably find him fixing his Dodge Viper.