You may not think about it as often as you should, but the Volkswagen Arteon is pretty awesome. It looks phenomenal and it’s roomier than you’d suspect given its low-and-wide stance. Although it’s not the most exciting car to drive in the world, it’s also not really supposed to be, and ti’s lively enough in its own way. For 2022, the Arteon is getting a little more fun, in exchange for a little more dough.
Here’s the bad news: the Arteon’s starting price will jump $3,000 to $41,190 (destination included) for the entry-level SE R-Line version. Yes — R-Line is base trim now in the U.S., as weird as that sounds.
That’s all the bad news. The rest is good!
The turbocharged, 2.0-liter inline-four under the hood now makes 300 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque, an improvement of 32 HP and 27 lb-ft, respectively. That jump in output has been paired with a switch from VW’s eight-speed, torque-converter auto to a seven-speed, dual-clutch DSG. The net result of these changes might make the Arteon feel a little more motivated, which is never a bad thing. It’s not quite the 316 HP of the Arteon R we don’t get on this side of the pond, but it’s not terribly far off.
New Arteons also include more standard equipment to further justify that $3,000 hike. From Volkswagen’s press release:
The SE R-Line features a new 18-inch wheel design, adds front and rear Park Distance Control, and includes wireless charging for compatible phones. For the SEL R-Line, 4Motion® all-wheel drive is now standard, and 20-inch dark graphite wheels are available. The SEL Premium R-Line retains the same level of premium content as the 2021 model year.
Nice things are happening to the Arteon in this moment, but forgive me for saying this good fortune has the air of a stay-of-execution to it. Remember today a year from now, when the sharp sedan is unceremoniously discontinued here like it is about to be in Canada. It’ll probably be swapped out for a coupe-roofed Tiguan Crossback R something. That car doesn’t exist yet, I made it up. But give it time — it will.