I have always wanted to do a cross border drive but its not easy planning for one especially when we have a big convoy. Thankfully, there are members that have done so and is very helpful to get us started. Special thanks to Faizaki, Fakhri Farid, DK, Hisham, Saiful and all those involved in planning for the trip and also thank you to Wing Hin Autohaus for sending in the Passat B8 Comfortline as the support car.
The drive to Koh Samui is estimated around 2000km round trip, which started on 16 Feb 0040hrs from Subang Jaya. I was very excited because this is my first time and we get to go on the all new Passat B8. Honestly, I am not a big fan of the DSG7; lets face it, after hearing so many complaints about the gearbox and to say that I am a fan, is B.S.
If given a choice, I would have gone for the Passat B8 2.0t (highline) than 1.8t (comfortline) because its human instinct to pick the best (or perceived best) but after 1000km on it, I have to admit that the comfortline is pretty decent as well. It doesn’t have the digital cluster like the highline, missing the media pro entertainment which means that it does not have the app connect enabled.
The good news is, the app connect activation key can be purchased from the service centre – sorry but I am a big fan, because it connects seamlessly to my Spotify playlist and you get almost everything from the highline such as electronic boot, massage seat (probably not thai-style), cruise control, driver alert assistant, a much futuristic interior compared to the highline wood-ish panel and a newly improved DSG7 gearbox or so I was told.
I know a lot of people (especially Volkswagen fans) are not impressed with the comfortline because of its DSG7 gearbox but I have heard from a reliable source that Volkswagen made some changes to the gearbox; something to do with clutch and mechatronic (validated).
Technical aside, after spending much mileage on the car, I honestly think that DSG7 on B8 is a little better than the B7. Why? I recall my experiences with the B7 having juddering issues at early stage of the car; I test drive many cars because of my profession and the juddering is something I noticed on most B7, regardless of mileage and not a silo-case.
On the B8, I felt otherwise but I am sure the quest for power is never ending, 260nm as some report but 280tsi badge was supposedly to represent the official torque number. I try to sent the car to a dyno machine once I get back to work but with the EA888.3 (gen3), I am sure it has more potential power output limited by the DQ200 gearbox. If only they made this with a DSG6 / DQ250, I am very sure it will make good numbers on the dyno.
The Comfortline really impresses me on the fuel consumption. We were late to kick off our journey by 1 hour, in fact, based on legal speed limit, we were expected to start at 0000hrs and reach CTC (Changlun rest) by 0530hrs before we cross border. Cut the story short, we traveled above legal speed, had 2 interval rest of 30 and 45 minutes, then arrived at CTC 30 mins earlier despite starting 1 hour late with average Fuel Consumption (FC) on the Multi-Function Display (MFD), pretty impressive.
For comparison purposes, my Golf R on that sort of speed definitely scores above 10.5L/100km. I was very convinced that we will reach Samui on a tank of fuel (about 1000km) but that will be taking risk, moreover, we are the support car and it doesn’t make sense if we breakdown instead.
Since last refill, we have covered close to 400km and more than half tank left. I am sure we can make it to Haatyai and refill again before we leave for home and I am really tempted to take that risk…. Lets see how many KM can the car actually clocks instead of a projected range.
Anyway, that’s all for the update on Day 1 travelling and here are some pictures for your viewing pleasure.