As a newcomer to the United States, I quickly discovered how difficult it is to operate without any credit. Apartments want a larger deposit, banks won’t (easily) give you credit cards, and car financing or leases are next to impossible at reasonable rates.
So, I purposely scoped out manufacturers with foreign professionals programs, of which Volkswagen’s was most front and center. With plenty of details available online, I could prepare just about everything in advance. With paperwork in hand, the process was fairly painless. With the lease incentives for the 2010 Passat CC’s, I snagged one for a fairly reasonable price. It’s a Sport, 2.0T DSG (automatic), in Island Gray (coincidentally, my former home and high school respectively!).
The exterior looks nice, the ride is smooth and the interior is great for the price. The 2.0T engine provides a good amount of power, with a nice meaty torque band, due to the turbocharger, but it’s not a tire-scorcher. I can slide in an SD card with my music, pair up my phone to the Bluetooth and I’d be all set for a nice long drive, which likely won’t happen for a week or two, unfortunately. So far, there are two concerns: there’s a bit of a rattle in the dash at a certain engine/road noise frequency, and due to the shape of the vehicle, the rear window provides terrible visibility. I’ll get them to look at the former problem at the initial break-in servicing. I’ve only had it for a week (still have the temporary vehicle license!); there will be more thoughts on the car as I drive it more.
Above is a 3-shot HDR, taken near Issaquah, WA. The light was a bit harsh, with many reflections off the car. The following shots are also 3-shot (+/- 1EV) HDRs, but I didn’t do anything terribly aggressive with them – I simply wanted to flatten the exposure a bit.