Volkswagen Arteon

Shooting Brake

Elegance eHybrid

Volkswagen Arteon Shooting Brake, 2021, side
Volkswagen Arteon Shooting Brake, 2021, front
Volkswagen Arteon Shooting Brake, 2021, rear
Volkswagen Arteon Shooting Brake, 2021, interior
Volkswagen Arteon Shooting Brake, 2021, boot
Volkswagen Arteon Shooting Brake, 2021, rear seats
Volkswagen Arteon Shooting Brake, 2021, display screen
Volkswagen Arteon Shooting Brake, 2021, boot, interior

NOT for a long time has a car caused such commotion and interest among passersby.

The sleek, muscular lines of the Volkswagen Arteon Shooting Brake had small boys and grown men and women in raptures.

To most, it came as a shock to discover the exotic shape belonged to a Volkswagen. Understandable really when you compare it with the regular and conservatively styled Golf and Passat.

From some angles it even resembles the exalted Turismo version of the Porsche Panamera...but at less than half the price.

The Shooting Brake is a recent addition to the coupe-styled Arteon line-up and adds a bit more practicality in terms of luggage space as well as a dash of individuality.

In usual VW fashion, there's a mix of engines on offer - we chose the eHybrid which gets a 1.4-litre petrol unit linked to an electric motor which endows the big five-door with a handy 215bhp. It's linked to a six speed dual clutch automatic gearbox.

With a sprint to 60mph in less than eight seconds together with bags for torque thanks to its electric assistance, the eHybrid turns out to be pretty brisk, without actually trying to be a sports car.

Mechanical refinement is impressive. You start off in electric mode and even when the petrol motor kicks in, noise levels are barely audible. It is capable of 39 electric-only miles.

Combined with the slick automatic box equipped with steering wheel paddles for added fun, the result is an effortless yet satisfying drive. Steering is reasonably positive and quite high geared which helps it to be more driver-orientated than the standard Passat.

Cornering is sure and safe, and certainly lacks nothing in terms of grip. But it's not quite as intuitive as a BMW or the VW Golf GTi manages to be.

Despite the raunchy styling, the Shooting Brake remains extremely practical with up to 1,632 litres of luggage space when the rear seats are slung down. When the rear seats are in place capacity is 455 litres, somewhat smaller than some rivals. There are however plenty of cubbies, water-bottle holders, and storage spaces within the cabin.

Front seats have copious adjustment and are well shaped. Those in the rear are also comfortable and legroom is generous. There's actually slightly more headroom in the back than the standard Arteon saloon offers.

The fascia is quite plain but not as minimalist as the new Golf. So you get buttons to adjust the heating and air con rather having to adjust via the screen - a tricky procedure on the move. The leather flat-bottomed steering wheel is a nice touch and we also liked the opening glass panoramic sunroof.

Interior styling, though high grade and well finished, lacks the extrovert panache of the exterior design, which perhaps is a missed opportunity.

The eHybrid has obvious company car tax advantages with a CO2 of just 26g/km, but it also pretty cheap to fuel. Our average of 42mpg over 500 miles should please most owners, although somewhat short of the official combined figure of 245mpg!

FAST FACTS

Volkswagen Arteon Shooting Brake Elegance eHybrid

Price: £41,355

Mechanical: 1.4-litre, 215bhp, 4 cyl petrol/electric engine driving front wheels via automatic DSG gearbox

Max Speed: 138mph

0-62mph:7.8sec

Combined MPG: 245

Insurance Group: 22

C02 emissions: 26g/km

Bik rating: 11%

Warranty: 3yrs/60,000 miles

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