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2012 Volkswagen Routan Review

The 2012 Volkswagen Routan has a very good safety score, but reviewers were disappointed with the quality of some of its interior materials.

Pros & Cons

  • Good safety score
  • Some cheap interior trim

Rankings & Research

The 2012 Volkswagen Routan's #8 ranking is based on its score within the 2012 Minivans category. Currently the Volkswagen Routan has a score of 7.2 out of 10, which is based on our evaluation of 25 pieces of research and data elements using various sources.




Critics' Rating: 6.7
Performance: 7.6
Interior: 7.7
Total Cost of Ownership: 9.1
Safety: 8.0
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2012 Volkswagen Routan Overview

Automotive journalists said the 2012 Volkswagen Routan’s standard V6 engine provides adequate power, but some noted that it’s noisier than the V6 engines in the Honda Odyssey and the Toyota Sienna. The Routan gets an EPA-estimated 17/25 mpg city/highway, which is a bit low for the class. Most test drivers were pleased with the VW Routan’s comfortable ride, and they said its handling is agile for a minivan. They also appreciated the Routan’s responsive, nicely weighted steering.

Critics liked some of the 2012 Routan’s interior materials, such as the nicely textured, soft-touch dashboard. However, others wanted better build quality when they noticed things like the flimsy center console. Test drivers said the Routan’s first- and second-row seats have more supportive bolstering than the seats in some competing minivans, including the Chrysler Town & Country upon which it is based. Standard features in the VW Routan include a six-speaker stereo and an auxiliary input. Available features include power-sliding doors, a power liftgate, power-folding third-row seats, power-adjustable front seats, leather upholstery, tri-zone automatic climate control, heated first- and second-row seats, Bluetooth, a rear-seat entertainment system, satellite radio, a rearview camera, blind spot monitoring, push-button start, navigation and a nine-speaker audio system.

The 2012 Volkswagen Routan’s safety score is very good for the class.

Other Minivans to Consider

Test drivers said the 2012 Honda Odyssey is one of the most agile minivans you can buy, able to handle curvy roads with no trouble. They liked its high-quality interior materials and its spacious seats in all three rows. The Odyssey also has a superb safety score for the class.

Unlike the Routan, the 2012 Chrysler Town & Country comes standard with second-row seats that fold flat into the floor, which reviewers said makes it easy to expand the cargo area. Automotive journalists were also impressed with the premium materials in the Town & Country’s interior.

Compare the Routan, Odyssey and Town & Country »


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