The 2019 Volkswagen Arteon is Volkswagen’s new, albeit long delayed, flagship sedan. It’s more expensive than the rest of the VW sedan lineup, and it has that long, elegant body styling that says, “I’m here to make you feel important, not budget-friendly.” But no matter how much you spend on the Arteon, one thing won’t change: Its headlights will still suck. Badly.
That’s according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, which has, since it began headlight testing a few years ago, taught us all just how much disparity there is between how well vehicles light the road. Some have good headlights on more expensive trims and bad ones down low, for example.
But with the Arteon, which starts at $35,845, there’s no ambiguity in headlight quality between trims. No matter which version you get, according to IIHS, the headlights are going to suck.
IIHS published a recap of the Arteon’s safety ratings Tuesday, saying it did well in crash safety but missed out on any award qualifications due to its headlights. It got IIHS’ top rating, a green “Good” icon, in every overall crashworthiness category, but the big, fat red mark comes in the headlights category: “Poor,” IIHS’ lowest of four ratings for that test.
IIHS ratings list the Arteon as having three different headlight setups, which all received that “Poor” rating. The bottom SE trim that starts at $35,845 has LED projectors without high-beam assist, via IIHS, and the evaluations of the lights ranged from “inadequate” to “fair” visibility depending on the situation.
The LED projectors on the SEL and SEL R-Line trims, which start at $41,795 and $43,560, respectively, were also rated as poor, but IIHS described certain areas of visibility as “fair” and “good” despite the low beams creating “excessive glare.” Similar was true for the LED projectors on the $46,210 SEL Premium trim, which, unlike the other headlight options, does have high-beam assist.
Regardless, though, each option got a giant, red “P” for poor on it, and more details on the individual IIHS ratings can be read here. That means no matter how much money gets thrown toward Volkswagen’s top sedan, buyers in this model year still won’t have great visibility going down the road.
Good luck out there, as usual.