2012 Volkswagen Phaeton | new car review

Posted on Jul 15, 2012 by

The Phaeton is a large, limousine-like sedan from and represents a bold idea that didn’t really work – commercially at least. It was conceived by Ferdinand Piech as a worthy competitor to the best seller in the luxury saloon segment, the Mercedes-Benz S-Class.

VW hoped that the car would challenge the luxury barges produced by the likes of Mercedes-Benz and BMW, but the Volkswagen name just didn’t hold the prestige that buyers of such cars wanted. The shares its underpinnings with a heavyweight like the Bentley Continental GT and has some of the very best technology found in any car as of today.Volkswagen went on to file over 150 patents in the process of building the Phaeton. But because of its people carrier badge, the Phaeton didn’t sell in volumes that VW expected.

The car was given a facelift in 2011, with LED running lights, a few other minor exterior tweaks and a revamped interior. VW says that the already high quality interior is now even more luxurious. Features include four-zone air conditioning, powered boot lid, air suspension and a 150-function infotainment system.

Options include a rear seat DVD and TV system, satellite navigation and even a 17.5-litre fridge. Power seats, allow wheels and a sun roof are all-standard. The car comes with five seats as standard, although the Phaeton can be ordered with four seats for more space in the back.

Performance comes from a choice of three engines, all of which are mated to a four-wheel drive system. A 3.2-litre V6 makes 241bhp while the 4.2-litre V8 puts out 335bhp and bother are mated to a six-speed automatic gearbox. The most powerful option is a massive 6.0-litre W12 unit (think of two V6s fused together) that pushes out 450bhp through a five-speed gearbox and this engine is ‘on order’ only.

The Phaeton is available in a regular and a long-wheelbase and the GCC only gets the long-wheelbase version.

Specifications

Price: AED 225,000 – AED 420,000

Engine
3.2-litre V6

Max power: 241bhp
Max torque: 315Nm

4.2-litre V8
Max power:
334bhp
Max torque: 430Nm

6-litre W12
Max power:
450bhp
Max torque: 560Nm

Transmission

5-speed automatic, all-wheel-drive

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