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Arteon for Arteon's Sake: The 2023 Volkswagen Arteon

2023 Volkswagen Arteon front 3/4 view

In a world where the large family sedan has largely (I know, I know) been put out to pasture, it's a rare thing to find an automaker who continues to build one---especially one that sells as few copies as the Volkswagen Arteon.

2023 Volkswagen Arteon rear 3/4 view

Only 1,178 Arteons found homes in the United States in calendar year 2022. A couple of months saw sales of 15 units. Volkswagen reports its sales quarterly, so I can't tell you how April and May of this year went for them, but January through March found VW dealers moving a grand total of 529.

That's a shame, because there's a lot of good stuff about and in the Arteon.

2023 Volkswagen Arteon hood up

2023 Volkswagen Arteon engine

Not least among those is the 300-horsepower 2.0-liter 16-valve turbo four-cylinder engine. Packing 295 lb-ft of torque and mated to a seven-speed automatic transmission, it's plenty quick, with 0-60 runs at 4.6 seconds. Fuel economy is impressive for the size of the car and the level of performance, at 22 city/31 highway/25 combined.

Our tester was the SEL R-Line with 4MOTION all wheel drive. That includes selectable drive modes, a cross differential system, electric power steering, four-wheel independent suspension, multi-mode adaptive chassis control and vented front and rear disc brakes. The mix of power and control makes for a very satisfying road car.

2023 Volkswagen Arteon rear hatch open

2023 Volkswagen Arteon rear seat

2023 Volkswagen Arteon front seats

2023 Volkswagen Arteon front seat detail

2023 Volkswagen Arteon instrument panel

All Arteons begin above the $40,000 mark, so it really makes sense to just go for the top-of-the-line SEL R-Line like our tester. $47,995 including destination isn't cheap, but for a large, premium family sedan, it's not out of line. And choosing the SEL R-Line loads the car with an impressive list of standard equipment, including 20-inch wheels, automatic LED headlights, adaptive front lighting with dynamic cornering lights, rain-sensing wipers with heated washer nozzles, a power panoramic sunroof, three-zone automatic climate control with 2nd row vents, heated steering wheel, heated front seats, leather seating surfaces and steering wheel, a complete suite of active safety features and an 8-speaker audio system with wireless charging.

2023 Volkswagen Arteon steering wheel and gauge cluster

2023 Volkswagen Arteon center console

It's almost a one-price, all-inclusive deal---our car just had one extra-cost option---the Kingfisher Blue Metallic paint, at $395. So the as-tested price came to $48.390.

2023 Volkswagen Arteon front view

2023 Volkswagen Arteon side view

2023 Volkswagen Arteon rear view

I can't tell you why Volkswagen continues to build the Arteon---most family sedans have walked the plank with significantly better sales numbers----but I'm glad they do.


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