On the new ones (B5.5 I believe) the rear lights have two round cirles
stacked, with whiteish colour between them... on the old style (B5) Passats
they were all red, and a rather ugly shade of red, at that IMO.
The front end on the new ones has two clearly visible projector beams and
two high beams to the inside... the older cars have more of an old style
light that looks like all one piece, but I believe it also is separate
low/high projectors, just not as distinct.
New Passat looks like the current one.
Old Passat does not.
New = chrome around windows and on bumpers, side marker lamps in sides of
bumpers, tails do not wrap around the sides of the car.
Old = black around windows, body-colored strips in bumpers w/o chrome, side
marker lamps integrated into front corner lamps and wrap around tails.
The B5.5 also has chrome trim where the B5 has none - on the bumpers,
and on the window surrounds, as well as on the dash gauges.
(Personally, I prefer the B5 look.) Also, the B5.5 has cupholders in
the center console next to the e-brake, while the B5 has that crappy
(IMO) pop-out cupholder in the center stack.
I prefer the 5.5 also. I think it looks more finished and more mature. Although
I suppose it's a bit more feminine too. I'd probably do a B5.5 on a short lease
(2-3 years). With the next generation model iminent I'd want the oppurtunity to
move out of my B5.5 and into a newer one without the hassle of selling the one
I bought now. Either that or try to drill the dealer on giving me a price break
on purchasing a W8.
I've always loved tastefully (and that is really the key word here) applied
chrome (old Mercedes 560's come to mind) and they do it nicely on the
Passat... they went overboard on the Jetta - chrome GRILLE STRIPES... come
on, that looks ugly.
The dash + cockpit have way too much chrome. I hate the chrome on the
steering wheel and around the tach + speedo. I'd also prefer not having it
on the shift. It's all so cheap looking and visually distracting.
One of these days I'm going to rip the chrome thing off the stearing wheel.
The chrome on a 49 Merc or 54 Buick is a whole different thing.
I like the chrome door handles... I hate the stuff around the shift boot...
sunlight reflects off it badly (I have the automatic so there's a LOT of
chrome compared to the 5-speed's)... I like the brushed metal gauges on the
new Jetta's... Chrome on the steering wheel? You mean the logo? - White and
blue logo might look better.
I like shiny metal objects tho - limited brainpower and such I suppose
;-)... if they spin its even better.
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