Volkswagen released a sketch of the Arteon, a sedan with fastback styling that VW says previews the next era of VW design. Set to replace the VW CC and the ill-fated Phaeton, the Arteon will serve as a halo for the VW brand, sitting above the Passat in both pricing and equipment. The new model is to debut in March at the Geneva auto show and, according to German press reports, is expected to go on sale next summer in Europe for about 33,000 euros ($35,000).
While the CC drew its name from the acronym for Comfort Coupe, the Arteon is a smooshing together of "Art," to describe its silhouette, and "Eon," which is Volkswagen's new way to define its premium models. While the CC was never a sales leader for Volkswagen, it became a cult car that brought new buyers attracted to its style – despite the sedan's small rear seat, limited headroom, and compromised luggage space. The Arteon was designed from the ground up to deliver the design of the CC without the compromises. VW says the sedan will have frameless windows like the CC, a larger trunk than the CC, and a "highly expressive, horizontally accentuated brand look." The new sedan will ride on a mildly evolved version of the MLB architecture used by the European Passat and other vehicles. The car that will debut is most likely what we had thought would be the 2018 CC.
This new model takes some of its inspiration from the Sport Coupe GTE concept from last year's Geneva show, though the production Arteon will ditch that car's V6 gasoline-electric hybrid powertrain in favor of the Passat's engine and transmission options. In Geneva, the Arteon will have 19-inch alloy wheels, LED Matrix headlights, and Audi-style active indicator lights. Its interior will combine an active information dashboard with a head-up display, and it will also set a new standard inside Volkswagen for autonomous capability, though more details aren't known.