Volkswagen Arteon Shooting Brake Review 2024

Volkswagen Arteon Shooting Brake At A Glance

Honest John Overall Rating
For those who find the Volkswagen Passat Estate too boring, the Arteon Shooting Brake is a stylish alternative. Just don’t expect too much in the way of extra practicality.

+Supremely handsome for an estate car. Interior is spacious and well put-together. Comfortable as a long-distance cruiser.

-Hardly more practical than the regular Arteon hatchback. Driving experience is a bit dull. Infotainment system can be frustrating.

The Arteon Shooting Brake is an example of Volkswagen going slightly off-piste, creating a curvaceous estate version of its Arteon hatchback. It certainly looks more interesting than a Volkswagen Passat Estate or Skoda Superb, although the practical benefits over the regular Arteon are limited.

Volkswagen built its reputation with solid and sensible vehicles, but the Arteon Shooting Brake offers a dash of extra flair. Transforming the rather mundane Passat Estate into the stylish Arteon wagon certainly makes a statement.

Based on the fastback-style Arteon hatchback that was launched in 2017, the Shooting Brake was added to the Volkswagen range in 2021. This happened at the same time as the Arteon received a facelift, so this load-lugging version benefitted from all the same upgrades.

As for the name itself? ‘Shooting Brake’ has traditionally been applied to estate versions of two-door coupes, and dates back to the horse-drawn wagons used by shooting parties. Mercedes-Benz kickstarted the modern Shooting Brake trend with its CLS in 2012. In reality, the Arteon is still very much an estate car, albeit a sleek and handsome one.

The usual reason for choosing an estate (sorry, Shooting Brake) is extra practicality. On paper, the Arteon Shooting Brake’s 590-litre boot only adds an extra 27 litres of capacity over the fastback version. However, the raised roofline makes for better rear headroom, while dropping the back seats results in a substantial 1632 litres of luggage capacity.

This figure still falls short of the Passat Estate, though, and is nowhere near the size of the gargantuan Skoda Superb Estate. Yet for combining style and space, the Arteon Shooting Brake takes some beating.

It’s a similar story when you explore the interior of the Arteon Shooting Brake. At first glance, it looks a little dated, having been lifted from the Volkswagen Passat first sold in 2014. But it has been updated over time, and Volkswagen has added some chrome trim to liven things up.

This works, to an extent, with a decent mixture of materials helping bolster the premium image. Nappa leather seats are standard on the R model, with the remainder using a combination of Art Velours faux suede and leather.

A standard multimedia touchscreen, combined with a digital dashboard, brings more modernity to the Arteon. Compared with some of Volkswagen’s latest efforts, this is a more user-friendly infotainment system. However, the touch-sensitive sliders for the climate control are a lesson in making something more complicated than necessary.

At least the Arteon Shooting Brake drives in a no-nonsense fashion, with a focus on refinement and executive comfort. Forget ideas of sportiness, other than in the range-topping R version, as the Arteon is not really a car to engage with. Seamless progress, rather than sporty handling, is the order of the day.

This is reflected by the engine range, which comprises three petrols and a diesel in two power outputs. The 2.0 TSI petrol with 190PS is the pick of the range, although those with long motorway commutes will be well served by the diesel duo. With 320PS, the 2.0 TSI petrol engine in the Arteon R comes from the Golf R hot hatchback. It delivers serious speed, but is not as entertaining as you might hope.

While not the most accommodating wagon, or indeed the best to drive, the Arteon Shooting Brake still has plenty going for it. Compared to a traditional estate car or crossover SUV, we think the Arteon is an attractive alternative.

What does a Volkswagen Arteon Shooting Brake cost?