The sleek contours of a 2-door coupe with the seating capacity of a 4-door sedan has become quite the rage in the mid-size market. Pioneered by Mercedes and adopted across the board, the CC epitomizes the ethos with its low lines and elegant shape thanks to a recent facelift that has elevated it to one of the prettiest vehicles in the mid-size family car class.
This elegant exterior has come at a price on the interior. The lowered profile of the rear roofline/rear window has reduced rear headroom slightly, and the addition of a third rear seat (the new seat replaces the old central bin) has made the rear a snugger environment. It’s hard to see five full-grown adults sharing the CC in complete comfort for anything but a sort trip, but a family with two or three kids of anything up to teenage would be well served by the CC.
Elsewhere the interior is a pleasure. Up front the CC is spacious with well laid out instrumentation and plenty of accessories and creature comforts – even on base models – although the lack of a USB port might present problems for anyone trying to use non-Apple devices.
The five CC models fall into two distinct camps: those powered by the superb 2.0-liter turbocharged TSI engine, and those using the 3.6-liter VR6 unit. The TSI powerplant delivers 200hp and utilizes VW’s 6-speed DSG double-clutch system (a manual shift option is available on the base Sport model), so all in all you can expect 0-60mph in around 6.2 seconds and an EPA rated 22/31mpg. By contrast the VR6 throws out 280hp but the 220lbs weight penalty and older 6-speed transmission mean the performance is going to be about equal to the TSI powered vehicles. Throw in the poorer fuel economy and higher price of the VR6 models and you have to admit that ultimately the TSI models make more sense.
Ride quality is excellent throughout the CC range; easily on a par with many luxury sedans, but with a sporty precision that will keep the driving enthusiast interested. Some people have complained that the heavier VR6 models are prone to understeer/push, although the AWD package on the Executive CC model adequately compensates for this.
The CC comes in five different models, but because VW are offering few in the way of optional extras and instead packaging trim configurations to specific models, be sure to carefully choose the model spec that best suits you.