2021 Volkswagen Arteon gets a facelift and refreshed interior

The 2021 VW Arteon is arriving with fresh styling and a more refined interior. And there's more good news: Volkswagen is introducing a station wagon variant of the Arteon. The bad news is, the Arteon Shooting Brake is only destined for Europe, China, and other parts of the world.

But then again, it's good to know VW is not backing down from the onslaught of new sports sedans like the incoming Acura TLX and TLX Type S, new Nissan Maxima, and the brilliant Kia Stinger to name a few. "We still believe hatchbacks and sedans are important for that ultimate driving experience," said Hein Schafer, Senior Vice President, Product Marketing & Strategy at VW North America in a conference call.

"Yes, we got a good lineup of SUVs, but the Arteon is the flagship and halo model of our sedan lineup, and people are buying Volkswagens for the driving experience," added Schafer.

First off, Volkswagen is simplifying the trim models of the 2021 Arteon. Gone is the midlevel SEL trim, but the base Arteon SE remains. In return, the SE receives a plethora of new standard kit including a new dashboard and digital cockpit, VW's latest MIB3 infotainment system with an 8.0-inch screen and wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, new 18-inch wheels, a 4-door keyless entry system, and a new steering wheel and HVAC system with touch controls.

Meanwhile, the Arteon R-Line is equipped with wireless charging, new 20-inch wheels, cool ambient lighting, and an illuminated light bar on the grille. The latter is unique to the R-Line along with a larger lower air intake flanked by C-shaped air inlets on the side. On the other hand, the Arteon SE receives an updated bumper design with a chrome bar above the front spoiler.

The 2021 VW Arteon SEL Premium R-Line receives unique 20-inch wheels, a 700-watt premium Harman Kardon audio system with twelve speakers, and a host of luxury features including ventilated and massaging front seats, heated rear seats, and a 360-degree camera. All trim models of the new Arteon are blessed with upgraded interior materials to deliver a more premium vibe.

On the safety front, the new Arteon is comprehensively equipped with forward collision warning, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, front lane assist, and emergency assist along with lane departure warning and lane-keeping assist in the Arteon SEL Premium R-Line.

All new 2021 VW Arteons are powered by a feisty 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder motor producing 268 horsepower. The engine is mated to an eight-speed automatic driving the front wheels, while AWD remains optional across the board. In Europe, the Arteon R-Line is powered by a range of gasoline and diesel motors.

The European order books are open for the 2021 VW Arteon sedan, Shooting Brake, and R-Line. Meanwhile, we're expecting the first U.S. deliveries to arrive later in the summer. Pricing and other specs will follow soon.