2012 Volkswagen CC

2012 Volkswagen CC [A Quick Review]

The Volkswagen CC, an all wheel drive, which is based on the VW Passat sedan sold in Europe, gets a new interior for the 2012 model year.

The basic walnut trim inserts on the 2012 CC have been revised with a selection of new dark wood options for CC purchasers to pick from.

A new analog clock has also been added to the CC, which is located just above the radio controls.

The 2012 Volkswagen CC is a beautiful, sporty four-passenger version of the European-market Passat, designed to compete with “four-door coupes” like the Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class and corporate stablemate Audi A7, only at a middle-management price range.

2012 Volkswagen CC
2012 Volkswagen CC

Is a 2012 Volkswagen CC a decent vehicle?

The 2012 VW CC achieves 22/31 mpg city/highway, which is fairly respectable for the class, according to the EPA.

The CC features a smooth ride and sporty handling, according to test drivers, which should suit most car purchasers.

The CC offers ample of road grip and feels composed while cornering, according to the reviewers.

Overview

The 2012 Volkswagen CC is essentially the Volkswagen Passat CC alter ego; while they’re both sedans, the CC goes for a more adventurous style and packaging approach—albeit at the price of some practicality.

To many, that’s fine, and the CC can be mistaken for a more expensive, higher-end vehicle by the Volkswagen Group.

With its gorgeous, coupe-like profile, frameless windows, and long, flowing design—plus a rear deck that tucks down instead of rising upward—the CC sport is inspired by the Mercedes Benz CLS.

It’s a four-passenger sedan with two separate seats in back, and the dash and doors are a touch more luxuriously finished than the normal mid-size car, with elements like contrast stitching and contrast-color themes for the upholstery.

The CC models now include a new analog clock above the radio, which is new for 2012.

The appearance suggests that the 2012 CC is sportier than the Passat, however this isn’t entirely accurate.

The 200-horsepower, 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine found in the majority of the lineup provides good straight-line performance; it’s incredibly smooth and produces 207 pound-feet of torque without revving high.

Furthermore, it works nicely with VW’s superb DSG automatic transmission (the manual is also a good choice).

The top VR6 4Motion Executive model adds a 3.6-liter VR6 engine and 4Motion all-wheel drive, but the overall package gives the CC a notably heavier, but not necessarily faster, personality—we prefer the four.

The CC handles well throughout the series, but with its too mild steering and soft suspension calibration, it’s evident that comfort takes precedence over all-out performance.

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The four-cylinder vehicles, in addition to being moderately responsive and fuel-efficient, ride nicely, and the opulent interior trims throughout the model line feel like they belong in a premium car.

The CC’s frameless-window concept appears to have worked well for VW, as the cabin feels compact and calm, with no road or wind noise.

The CC’s unusual but attractive seating arrangement could be a deal-breaker or pique your interest, depending on what you’re looking for in a sedan.

The rear seat is only built for two people, and with limited headroom besides the front wheel drive, it’s evident that the 2012 Volkswagen CC is a vehicle that prioritizes style over practicality.

The seat position in the front of steering wheel is simply weird, with a scooped up feeling that can also impede headroom.

With IIHS Top Safety Pick accreditation, occupant safety appears to be a strong suit for the CC.

For 2012, the CC is available in six different trim levels, including a sporty 2.0 R Line edition with thin-spoke Mallory alloys, lower-body skirts, darker taillights, and reflector-lens fog lights.

The base Sport model comes with heated power front seats, a touch-screen sound system with HD Radio, Bluetooth hands-free, parking sensors, navigation system and iPod compatibility, as well as 17-inch alloy wheels.

New walnut inserts have been added to the Lux Plus, Lux Limited, and 4Motion Executive versions for 2012.

Only the top-of-the-line Executive VR6 gets a great Dynaudio sound system.

Styling

If you spend a lot of money, you’ll find Audi’s A7, Mercedes’ CLS, and the new BMW 6-Series Gran Sport vying for some strange honors: they all have four doors but deny being sedans.

We’re expected to think of them as coupes instead.

The Volkswagen CC is one of a kind: at its pricing range, it’s the only German four-door sedan that calls itself a coupe.

And, like its more expensive siblings, it succeeds in persuading us, at least in terms of appearance, where its exquisite profile recalls some of the more attractive auto-show concept vehicles we’ve seen in the last decade.

With flowing lines, a low roofline, and frameless windows—not to mention a very precisely styled rear end—the design appears ageless.

The most serious criticism we can make is that the CC has extensive overhangs—the gap between the wheels and the car’s ends—which only serves to lengthen the car’s body in a more sensuous fashion.

The interior of the Volkswagen CC shines out even after several years; it features touches like contrast stitching, contrast color themes for the upholstery, and appealing, upmarket accents that aren’t normal in a car that starts far under $30,000.

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Performance

The CC’s sporty appearance sets it apart from the Passat, but the driving experience is very similar with direct shift gearbox.

Though all CCs are swift enough, the sharp handling that German vehicles are known for is reduced here in favor of comfort.

As usual, the base turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder is a treasure.

With direct injection, Volkswagen AG has refined this engine, which now produces 200 horsepower and 207 pound-feet of torque.

It comes standard on Sport and Lux variants; the former has a manual six-speed transmission with VW’s trademark notchy shift feel, while the four-cylinders can opt for a DSG dual-clutch automatic, which is one of our favorite transmissions from the VW Group.

The update comes in the form of VW’s “VR6,” a narrow-angle V-6 engine with a displacement of 3.6 liters and 280 horsepower in this application.

It has a completely different personality—harsh it’s and vocal, and it needs to be revved to extract its torque.

With its six-speed automatic transmission, the engine performs admirably, although upshifts are bumpy and downshifts are slow.

Overall, the four is more drivable than the six since the four makes torque low and the six needs to be revved—and the VR6 in its required 4Motion version doesn’t seem much perkier (while using a lot more fuel, at just 17 mpg city).

The VW CC handles decently, but it’s underwhelming in general thanks to overboosted, feather-light steering that lacks any sense of road feel; we also think the four-cylinder variant handles better.

The CC’s ride is typically smooth, but it’s better on the lesser grades; the improved wheels and tires put a strain on the chassis, causing road noise and sharp kicks to be conveyed to the interior on less-than-ideal roads.

Brakes are likewise a letdown; they’re excessively sensitive and difficult to control, despite being strong and capable.

Quality & Comfort

Volkswagen made some compromises when transforming the Passat sedan for the German market into the global coupe-like CC four-door.

The unique seating arrangement at the CC is a first hint. It’s a four-seater with a pair of buckets in front and another pair in back, with the back center seat sacrificed in the name of style and elegance.

The bucket seats in front are comfortable, but because the seating position is low and headroom is limited, lifting the seats up isn’t usually an option.

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In the back, in the space traditionally intended for an unlucky fifth wheel, there’s a generously cushioned armrest and two cupholders for the passengers.

Headroom is limited here as too, but the decent legroom is adequate.

The trunk of the CC is quite large, and the rear seatbacks can be flipped forward to increase cargo space when necessary.

Aside from the seating issues, the CC seems significantly more opulent and luxurious than the base model’s MSRP of around $30,000 would suggest.

The cabin is calm, and the materials and trimmings feel like they belong in a luxury car.

There’s evidence of a lot of attention put into the nooks and bins.

The premium trims’ leather upholstery is great for comfort coupe, but we like the slightly sticky cloth of the lower versions.

Safety Ratings

The crash test results are in, at least for the first half, and the VW CC has done well.

According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), the front-drive versions of the CC receive “good” scores in all crash tests, making them Top Safety Picks.

The cars with 4Motion all-wheel drive were not tested and are not included in the accolades for unclear reasons.

Since changing its criteria for the 2011 model year, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) hasn’t updated its CC ratings; nevertheless, prior to that change, the CC received primarily four-star ratings.

The CC comes standard with side and side-curtain airbag, electronic stability control, and anti-lock brakes, as well as rear side air bag, which are not normally available in this class.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Are Volkswagen CC reliable cars?

The Volkswagen CC has a 3.5 out of 5 reliability rating. For all car brands, it is ranked 12th out of 32.

Why did Volkswagen discontinue the CC?

The diesel version of the automobile was famously involved in Volkswagen’s big emissions standards cheating scandal in 2015, and the car was subsequently discarded as part of a trade-in deal negotiated by the company.

Are Volkswagen CC expensive to maintain?

Cost. A Volkswagen CC’s average total yearly repair and maintenance cost is $880, compared to $526 for medium cars and $652 for all vehicle types.

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