autonetwork

HomecatalogLifeCarsLogin
...

Long Term Update 4: 2010 Volkswagen Routan


The staff has been impressed with the styling of the Volkswagen version of the Town & Country, agreeing that the Routan has a better-looking exterior than its Dodge or Chrysler siblings and also a more elegant-looking interior. Everyone was just as happy with the interior's versatility and amount of storage space. However, editors are torn over how different the suspension is (VW touts it as having European tuning).

Most comments about this minivan, though, surround two issues: first, why Volkswagen, a company that has generated a cult following for its unique, cool vans over the last 40 years, would settle for a badge-engineered van; and second, what is up with those brakes?

 The first subject keeps coming up because of quality issues, many of which were seen in the last Town & Country we had: vibrations felt in the steering wheel, cheap-feeling center console, downmarket cabin materials, and the same problematic nav system as in other Chrysler Corp. products. Yes, badge engineering can save money, but that comes at its own cost.

Regarding the brakes: The Routan wears the same discs as the Chrysler vans (including a past Motor Trend long-termer). It has already gone to the dealer for a brake inspection, which revealed that the brake rotors were warped and needed machining. That was about six months ago, and it sounds like the rotors may again need to be machined. Says testing director Kim Reynolds, "The brakes are warped, but during most normal stopping, it isn't a big deal. A slight pulse can be felt now and then. It's probably during more aggressive stopping that it becomes an issue. We noticed the occasional squeal added to the acoustic festivities. Clearly, these brakes are headed in the same direction as the T&C's (which required major attention at around 19,000 miles). A shame VW didn't insist on an improvement in the brakes before allowing its name to be put on this vehicle."
.hdr {color:#ffffff;font:bold 12px verdana,arial,helvetica;background-color:#343434;} .hdr1 {color:#000000;font:bold 09px verdana,arial,helvetica;background-color:#aba9a9;} .hdr2 {color:#000000;font:09px verdana,arial,helvetica;background-color:#dddddd;} .hdr3 {color:#000000;font:09px verdana,arial,helvetica;background-color:#FFFFFF;} 2010 Volkswagen Routan Months/miles in service 8/16,933 Avg econ/CO2 18.2 mpg/1.07 lb/mi Unresolved problems Recurring front rotor warpage Maintenance cost $0 (2-oil change, inspection, rotate tires; 1-replace cabin air filter) Normal-wear cost $0 Repair cost $0 (machine warped brake rotors)

(Source)


Feed
Comparison: 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8 vs. 2011 BMW X5 M vs. 2011 Porsche Cayenne Turbo
These days, defining a sport/utility vehicle is hard. Just about anything top-heavy that necessitates the slight lifting of a passenger's leg for entry usually qualifies, thanks in part to the introduction...

read more

0
read comments 
First Test: 2012 Jeep Wrangler
The new Wranglers easily traversed...      read full caption The new Wranglers easily traversed the rugged Rubicon trail. Upgrades have refined and modernized the old-timer.You can't tell by looking...

read more

0
read comments 
First Drive: 2012 Toyota Yaris U.S. Spec
When the Yaris took over for the Echo as Toyota's smallest car in the U.S. in the middle of the last decade, the subcompact realm was barely inhabited. Gas prices were low, SUVs ruled the roads, and GM...

read more

0
read comments 
First Test: 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8
The traditional performance plan for Jeeps was to unbolt, unzip, unsnap, and otherwise dismount every component that wasn't necessary, then mount the biggest knobby tires possible and head for the hills....

read more

0
read comments