If you’re a regular reader of our quaint little blog here, you’ve seen plenty of gorgeous shots by the talented Ben Battles. Articles like his escapades at the Lane Motor Museum or the Smart Fortwo Passion come straight from his camera lens and are brought to life with his crisp, dark, aesthetic for your eyeballs to enjoy. This time, it’s a shoot focused on the new Volkswagen Arteon, featuring a smattering of other vehicles, including his own bagged VR6 Passat.
The Arteon is Volkswagen’s newest flagship sedan that directly replaced the CC, a popular variant of the Passat that offered a streamlined, sporty, and luxurious feel to the otherwise mundane commuter sedan. While it debuted in 2018 after the CC was discontinued the year before, we here in the United States had to be rather patient. We received it the following year after VW was forced to make a few design changes thanks to our traffic safety administration, but at least it made it here.
Thankfully so, as well, since this example shows off what enthusiasts do best: take Volkswagen’s original design language and mold it to their taste with some simple, yet noticeable, improvements.
An already impressive car from style and technology departments, this Arteon features a host of tasteful additions. The body is accented with a front lip, side skirts, and rear diffuser from Maxton Design that bring the big body sport-back closer to the ground and expands the already massive footprint of the sedan, especially with it sitting absolutely pancaked on the Airlift suspension setup.
With this being the most modern, advanced, and visually striking of Volkswagen’s current lineup, it’s not unusual to see what I would call an otherwise bold choice of wheels adorning each corner. The massive Revolve multi-spoke wheels sit right at home under the gaping fender arches and help give this sedan a menacing presence. They tie exceptionally well with the black aero upgrades, black tint, and negative space between the air ducts, grille, and sprinkling of R-Line trim around this saffron sedan.
Speaking of color, its a nice change of pace to see interesting color return to the world of passenger cars. In recent decades, the palate of colors seems to have dwindled to grayscales and an occasional reserved blue or maroon that leave much to be desired. While it is an artistically bold car, with its busy dorsal lines on the hood, wide hips, and geometric bumper designs, the metallic yellow color choice works well. It helps tell Volkswagen’s story a bit better than a white or gray could.
VW has always catered to the unique individuals, those who dare to be a bit different, by offering strange and polarizing designs. They sit somewhere between the economy and luxury segments, giving buyers a blend of performance and comfort while innovating with their advanced engines, industry-leading technology, and trendsetting design choices. The headlights, especially, with their solid LED running lights, carry that language from the Audi R8 that popularized them in the early 2000s.
This Arteon maintains that luxury and economy blend by poising itself somewhere between the contemporary VIP style and motorsport-inspired upgrades, finding itself neither exclusively in one camp or the other. It has elements of the classic stance movement, but doesn’t lay solely there, nor is it built to look like it lives at the track. It happily sits in the middle as a comfortable commuter with elements of all those styles mixed seamlessly.
The style of this build, then, is a near-perfect reflection of what the Arteon represents. It has something for everyone while also proving that aspirations can be reasonable and achievable. It’s a long-wheelbase luxury sedan, but it doesn’t carry a six-figure price tag. It’s a German performance car, but it doesn’t post it’s Nurburgring lap times like a sign that says ‘I have uncomfortable suspension and a jerky DCT gearbox.’ It has elements from those cars that make it a wonderful recipe for functional, livable, tasteful drivability.
I think, then, with the wheel, suspension, aero, and performance upgrades the owner chose for this Arteon, it is an excellent example of where car culture has come here in the third decade of the 21st century. It’s the smartphone mentality. It has to be a phone, but it also needs to be so much more without sacrificing usability in any segment. The Arteon, and this particular build, do that perfectly. It is a fresh take on old school fitment, the aggressive motorsport inspiration of body modifications, and the elevation of the basic to the brilliant.
Thanks again to the always wonderful Ben Battles for supplying the beautiful photography. Check out his other articles for more of his work below!
RELATED ARTICLE: Riverside 2019
RELATED ARTICLE: Fast and Furious Porsche Cayman
RELATED ARTICLE: Smart Fortwo Passion
RELATED ARTICLE: Alfa Romeo SZ