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2021 Volkswagen Arteon gets a higher base price, cheaper top trim

The 2021 Volkswagen Arteon is rolling into dealers as we speak, and VW just announced official pricing for the updated model.

Unfortunately, the refreshed Arteon gets more expensive. The new base price for the SE trim is now $38,190, including the $1,195 destination charge. That’s $1,175 more than the 2020 Arteon, which was already questionably expensive. VW does provide more goods for the extra coin this year, though.

Every new Arteon now comes with VW’s Digital Cockpit instrument cluster as standard equipment — you had to upgrade to the (now unavailable) SEL trim to get it before. VW also inserted an updated 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system with wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, and gave it a more premium dash with touch-sensitive buttons.

Both the SEL R-Line and SEL Premium R-Line trims get a touch cheaper this year, so you’ll get a slightly better deal if you want one of the higher-content Arteons. The SEL R-Line now starts at $42,790 (or $44,590 with all-wheel drive), and the SEL Premium R-Line at $48,190.

Every trim comes with the same 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that makes 268 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque.

One quick look at Autoblog listings for the Arteon show sizable discounts for most new ones listed. The prices that VW is asking for the Arteon do come across as high, especially when you consider what else can be had for its price — namely the Kia Stinger. Basically, don’t pay anywhere close to the list price for one of these.

VW hasn’t exactly been selling many of them either. Sales started to pick up in May last year, and VW has sold just over 5,000 since then. It’s reasonable to assume a lapse due to the pandemic, but the Arteon has had some of its best sales months from June to September this year. We’ll see if this light update and price massaging is enough to move the needle.

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