Excellent car, can't praise it enough. I've had one before, and when I saw this one (very cheap at less than £300) I had to have it. Quick for a 2 litre engine in a decent sized car ; 0-60 mph in just 10 seconds, and it will do just over 120 mph. Just had it serviced and changed the timing belt, runs very smooth.
Comfort? Well, I've had better speced cars (this one doesn't even have electric windows!) but it's a very comfortable car, smooth to drive and quiet, excellent ride. Central locking, alloys, spoiler, and a trip computer, that's about it. Basic spec for cars these days.
Reliability? I've had it six months and its never let me down...again, what can you say for less than £300!!
Economical too, I get close to 40 mpg on average, and that's calculated myself, I don't trust the trip computer on any car, though it does seem to be accurate.
Overall, a very quick comfortable and reliable car on the cheap. I don't know where the bad comments about this car come from - usually the USA, but the Volkswagens there aren't built in Germany, so...
The car is built so well it feels more 'executive' than family saloon. Better than the rivals (Mondeo, Vectra, etc)...not that theres anything wrong with those cars, just I like this better. And believe me, I've had LOTS of cars, everything from a Vauxhall Astra to a BMW 7-series, I just don't know why I like the VW Passat so much! Obviously bigger saloons and sports cars etc are better, but this car is just such a good 'all rounder' in terms of comfort, performance, reliability, running costs, etc.
Can't believe its about 15 years old now - and still going strong. I can easily see it lasting another couple of years. Only downside is parts are a bit more expensive than the average car, but all things considered, I'd highly recommened the car to anyone. This is the mark 3 Passat I have, but from what I here, old to the latest models are all good too, with similar good reports on reliability. Shame the USA got a bad deal on them (Why don't Volkswagen build them in Germany for the USA???)