Having said that, my atlas was lemon lawed over the digital cockpit and was probably one of the main reasons vw switched suppliers from Panasonic. I certainly hope people don't end up in the same boat as I did with issues since the cheaper polo/Jetta 10" cockpit is something Panasonic crapped out for them at the 11th hour.
After looking at it for a while, I still cannot accept the styling that they went with. I have an mk6 now, but will look elsewhere when its time to get something new. I think VW did a better job with the styling of the chinese market Jetta (Lavida). There may also be a gran lavida coming with a hatch.
Last edited by DubbinGT; 04-16-2018 at 12:03 PM.
http://www.autoguide.com/manufacture...n-jetta-reviewSometimes, the more things change, the more they stay the same.
- Engine: 1.4L turbo 4-cylinder
- Output: 147 hp, 184 lb-ft of torque
- Transmission: 6-speed manual / 8-speed auto
- US Fuel Economy (MPG): 30 city, 40 highway, 34 combined
- CAN Fuel Economy (L/100 km): 7.9 city, 5.9 highway, 7.0 combined
- CAN Price: $22,640
- US Price: Starts at $19,395(Prices include destination)
Witness the 2019 Volkswagen Jetta, the brand’s best-selling vehicle in North America, which has just been completely redesigned to feature an all-new architecture — and yet doesn’t strive to push the limits on where the compact sedan already stood in the minds of budget-conscious buyers.
While it’s true that the 2019 edition of the Jetta does deliver incremental improvements in fuel economy, interior room, features availability, and safety gear, the overall concept behind the vehicle is very nearly a dead ringer for what was available the year before. Whether this is a good or a bad thing depends on how enamored you were of what Volkswagen’s popular small car already had to offer (and if you’re comfortable with a little less choice under the hood).
MQB for You and Me
Moving the Jetta to Volkswagen’s modular MQB platform was always in the cards, as it allows for the automaker to save serious coin when it comes to manufacturing as well as share common components across a wide variety of different vehicles. It also explains why the car is somewhat larger than it was the year before, growing more than an inch in wheelbase and slightly less than that in terms of overall length and width — figures that translate into improved passenger accommodations front and rear in what was already a spacious and comfortable cabin for its class (with the puzzling exception of leg room, which actually shrinks slightly regardless of where you might be sitting).
Despite its new underpinnings, the 2019 Volkswagen Jetta doesn’t visually stray too far from the design cues laid down by its predecessor. Fans of the brand will notice more exaggerated creases running down each side of the car, a larger grille with more prominent lighting, and additional character lines carved into the front bumper, but aside from that, it’s a mild evolution of a design that was already working well for the sedan.
Another same, but different aspect of the 2019 Jetta has to do with its drivetrain. Yes, that’s singular, because Volkswagen has elected to make a 1.4-liter turbocharged four-cylinder the only engine available in non-performance models (with a larger-displacement Jetta GLI to drop later this year). The motor is good for 147 horsepower and 184 lb-ft of torque, numbers that are almost identical to what they were in 2018.
The decision to eliminate the 1.8-liter turbo as an option with the compact isn’t difficult to understand. Although that unit provided an extra 20 or so horsepower, it also cut fuel mileage by four miles per gallon and served as an intermediary step between frugality and performance in a lineup where the GLI was the clear choice for fans of the latter.
The good news for 2019 buyers is that the 1.4-liter turbo has seen its own efficiency boosted to the 40-mpg mark on the highway (5.9 L/100 km), regardless of whether its six-speed manual or new eight-speed automatic gearbox is ordered. That three-pedal setup is restricted to entry-level Jetta models in the U.S., but in Canada, it can be installed across the board.
While on paper the 2019 Volkswagen Jetta’s 147 horsepower don’t exactly leap off of the page, in actual practice, the engine’s torque-friendly delivery makes for a competent drive in almost every situation. In particular, I was impressed by how readily the Jetta’s automatic transmission selected the right gear for highway passing, executing leap-frog maneuvers with little drama.
On the secondary roads surrounding Durham, North Carolina, the Jetta’s chassis proved to be a comfortable if conservative companion, in many ways similar to the personality of the outgoing model. It’s also a quiet ride, at least until you get up past legal speed limits, upon which the wind begins to intrude into through the door seals.
Despite its bulk, as compared to several of its smaller compact sedan rivals, the Jetta never felt ponderous or plus-sized even on narrow asphalt. I also appreciated that Volkswagen has drawn the line at 17-inch rims being the upper limit on the car, helping balance driving dynamics with bump-absorbing sidewall in a segment when 18-inch wheels have become the norm. The SE model I drove — which Volkswagen projects to be the volume seller — lacked the Sport driving mode offered on other versions of the car, but I didn’t miss it, as I never felt compelled to hustle the Jetta past the point of a brisk commute.
Much like its exterior, the new Jetta’s passenger compartment hasn’t undergone a sweeping rethink in terms of look and feel. There are, of course, a few exceptions to this rule, with the most notable being the inclusion of the Digital Cockpit gauge cluster display, a trick setup whose 10.25 inches of LCD real estate mounted directly in front of the driver look gorgeous and can be configured in a number of useful ways. It’s a piece of tech borrowed from corporate stablemate Audi, and it’s something no other car in the Jetta’s class can match.
Most other features inside the 2019 Jetta are par for the course, with Volkswagen shuffling gear around to reduce pricing almost across the board. The entry-level S starts at an MSRP of $18,545 (Comfortline, $20,995 CAD), while the SEL Premium tops out at roughly $28k with both the Driver Assistance package (automatic braking, blind spot monitoring) and Cold Weather package added (Execline, $30k CAD with similar features).
A quick glance through the equipment list reveals that Volkswagen is once again relying on comfort and convenience to triumph over all-out driving dynamics in a bid to secure buyers, which is a smart strategy in a segment where the majority of customers are looking for a commuter, rather than a racer. Even the R-Line trim is an appearance, rather than performance package (with the exception of the Canadian market, where checking that box allows for a 15-mm suspension drop). The sweet spot for Jetta ownership most likely falls somewhere below the SEL Premium’s loaded leather-lined interior, whether that be the sporty look of the R-Line or the well-equipped SEL, but even the $22k SE is a decent choice for thrifty shoppers.
The Verdict: 2019 Volkswagen Jetta Review
Despite being offered essentially a clean slate with the move to MQB, Volkswagen was smart not to mess too much with what has historically been a key contributor to its bottom line in the U.S. and Canada. The brand’s engineering smarts have instead been directed at bolstering, rather than diverting, the Jetta’s mission statement. The 2019 model manages to stay relevant in terms of tech both inside the car and under the skin, adds a respectable fuel mileage bump, and continues to deliver on its promise of being a spacious, relaxed daily driver.
Better fuel mileage
Digital Cockpit is impressive
Exposed trunk springs a surprise
Active safety still not standard
Is the engine supposed to have a pop-off cover, perhaps omitted for cost reasons? That little black nubbin/snap thing between the middle two intake runners and the tall oil filler tube make it seem like it.
Last edited by adrew; 04-16-2018 at 12:57 PM.
Improving the signal-to-noise ratio
RIP: 1989 Mercury Tracer 5 speed 3 dr hatchback, 1995 VW Jetta GL 6 speed, 1997 Jetta GLS 5 Speed, 1999 Ford Escort Wagon, 1998 Mercury Sable Wagon, 2011 Audi A4, 2012 Ford Focus SEL, 2013 Jetta 2.5 SEL w/ Navigation, Twin Reflex Silver Metallic 2015 GLI's (SEL & SE)
And the Accord was not leasing well until recently, regardless of what you claim. It's way too early to call the Accord a failure.
Regardless of sales, the automotive press and pretty much anyone has driven it states it's best in class and a significant leap from the 9th generation.
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2016 Hyundai Tucson Limited AWD
2015 Kia Soul + Special Edition
Love one another
<-- *not* a 2018 Jetta photo
BTW, the sunroof isn't nearly as panoramic as VW's images would have you believe. The opening in the roof is hardly longer than the Mk VI's. The difference is, instead of the old magic trick of the glass sliding into the roof, now it's a big panel of stupid sticking out in the breeze.
It's like VW gave up on the Jetta after the Mk-IV. The Mk V gave us Toyota Corolla styling at a Lexus ES250 price. The Mk VI was cheap and bland (and I own one). I don't know WTF this car is any more. It's too much of a mess to be called boring, which is the nicest thing I can say about the styling.
At least the interior quality is a huge leap forward. Not that it could get any worse.
Last edited by g-man_ae; 04-19-2018 at 01:43 PM.
Learn what the bible really says about the End Times:
https://www.motor1.com/reviews/23903...a-first-drive/The seventh-generation Jetta is bigger and more refined than ever. Civic watch your back.
– Durham, North Carolina
The 2019 Volkswagen Jetta, now the seventh generation of the compact sedan, is also the first to make use of VW’s modular MQB platform. Car nerds and VW fans will probably already know what that means, but for the rest of you, allow me to bottom line it: This Jetta is bigger, roomier, more feature rich, more fuel efficient, and less expensive than the last one. Pretty good, right?
Not all of that is down to the vehicle architecture of course, but the benefits of MQB, along with a smart attack plan on the current compact car landscape, could very well have this Jetta moving up the ranks of sales leaders. At the very least, if you’re in the market for a small sedan and not a small SUV – first of all, God bless you – this 2019 model demands that the VW dealership be a stop on your journey.
As always, that journey starts with the eyes. Many will look at the crisply minimal shape of the Jetta with a sigh of relief, brought on by the current era of challenging designs for mass-market cars. The Civic, for all that I dig its origami, isn’t sheet metal that everyone finds lovely. This VW sedan, meanwhile, with its strong character line, uncluttered bodyside, and sharply designed lighting elements, is handsomely conservative. There’s a bit of a big face going on here, but hardly on the level of whichever LSD-microdosing designer is now running Toyota.
I drove the middle-trim R-Line Jetta for most of the day, and I also find this version of the VW the most fetching. The dark grille and mirror caps help sport the car up a little, and the 17-inch wheels – while still looking slightly small – are my favorite design of the rolling stock on offer. The top SEL- trimmed cars get more of a polished, chrome-y look, which does a passable impression of a low-rent Audi.
On the inside, the difference in trim marks out haves and have-nots more starkly. The design of the dash, and common materials are all sharp, Germanic, and more than acceptable. Two-tone leatherette seats in the R-Design trim aren’t really my cup of tea, but less for their statement of fashion (most other testers remarked that they liked the look), and more for their flatness, and general weak will where keeping me firmly planted mid-corner was concerned.
But the technology in front of one’s face takes a massive leap forward in the SEL ($24,415) and SEL Premium ($26,945) trims. I like the analog gauges of the more basic Jetta well enough, but SEL buys you the VW version of Audi’s Virtual Cockpit: a 10.25-inch display in the gauge cluster that can be configured to show everything from a full map view to track information on your current playlist. The top tier Jetta models also get an eight-inch touchscreen in place of the base, 6.5-incher, offering a bigger, crisper interface for (among other software) your Apple CarPlay or Android Auto experience.
It’s also more cavernous inside than ever before. The overall length of the car is up 1.7 inches, and the wheelbase increased by 1.3 inches, with most of these increases dedicated to freeing up the cabin. By the tape, VW has increased front- and rear-seat space in just about every dimension; in the real world it means that it’s possible for me, at six-feet and five-inches, to "sit behind myself" … albeit rather uncomfortably. Four standard five-foot, nine-inch adults should have plenty of room.
Trunk space isn’t as generous as you’d find in Civic, Elantra, Forte, or a few others in the segment, but at 14.1 cubic feet, with standard 60/40 split folding seats, it’s still flexible enough for most day-to-day needs.
Meanwhile, the driving experience is colored with only subtle variation from trim to trim. At launch all Jettas come with a turbocharged 1.4-liter inline-four-cylinder engine under the hood, replete with a healthy 184 pound-feet of torque, and a slightly disappointing 147 horsepower. On the base Jetta S, you can opt to manage that output with a six-speed manual transmission, but most of these cars will be sold with a very smooth, don’t-call-me-DSG, eight-speed automatic.
That horsepower figure is low when compared to other turbocharged compact sedans from Honda, Nissan, and Chevy (to name a few), but the torque is at or near the top of the class. So, even with a curb weight just a little shy of 3,000 pounds, the Jetta feels quick-enough where it counts: merging, passing, and accelerating smoothly. Those looking for more thrills should wait for the upcoming Jetta GLI.
The real benefit of the 1.4T comes at the gas pump, where the MK7 Jetta gets impressive ratings of 30 miles per gallon in the city, 40 on the highway, and 34 combined (for both automatic and manual transmissions, no less). And I actually believe those numbers are possible in the real world; over the course of really hard driving through the North Carolina back country, I still saw just a few miles per gallon under that estimated combined figure. Realistically it’s just the Honda Civic, and outliers like the Ford Focus 1.0T and Hyundai Elantra Eco, that will match or beat these figures.
The Jetta’s feeling on the road is a degree more planted and solid than some other compact sedans. The car just rides well, with a well-damped suspension and excellent in-cabin noise control, even up to speeds around 80 mph. Our drive route was hardly a handling course, but the Volkswagen did offer well-weighted steering with decent feel during cornering. The Jetta doesn’t rotate quite so quickly as its Honda and Mazda counterparts, but the ride-handling balance is nevertheless superb.
On hard corner exits I was benefiting, too, from the R-Design’s one actual nod to performance, the addition of the XDS torque-vectoring differential, as seen in the GTI. Strangely, the R-Design package does not offer the same Sport mode found in the SEL / SEL Premium trims… a packaging omission that even the VW pros on hand had a hard time explaining to me. Suffice it to say the diff is great at cleaning up corner exits for this car, though most owners will opt for R-Design for the visuals rather than the handling improvement, if I had to guess.
The 2019 Jetta comes to market – basically right now – with an entry point of just $18,545 (plus $850 for destination and delivery), and aggressive pricing versus content at nearly every trim. The compact sedan segment may be bleeding sales to small SUVs, but for those buyers still looking for good value, nice dynamics, and excellent fuel economy, alternatives to King Civic are now stronger than ever.
ENGINE Turbocharged 1.4-Liter Inline-Four
OUTPUT 147 Horsepower / 184 Pound-Feet
TRANSMISSION 8-Speed Automatic
DRIVE TYPE Front-Wheel Drive
WEIGHT 2,970 Pounds
FUEL ECONOMY 30 City / 40 Highway / 34 Combined
SEATING CAPACITY 5
CARGO VOLUME 14.1 Cubic Feet
ON SALE Now
BASE PRICE $18,545
AS-TESTED PRICE $23,845
Got to drive an SEL for about 30 minutes this week. General impressions:
+ throttle response is much improved in both D and S modes compared to previous gen
+ the stereo (Fender?) is quite good; I liked it better than my Dynadio is my GTI
+ very little road noise and better overall insulation makes it feel more upscale / better for road trips
+ feels quicker (under 70mph) than a 150 hp 1.4T should
+ i liked how everything was angled towards the driver. Makes for better ergonomics, and reminded me of my old mk3s.
+ the large infotainment screen combined with the console display seem like they could be 3 generations ahead of the mk6.
- exterior styling. I'm still not used to the softer styling theme.
- wheels. The car I drove had 17" wheels which look tiny on the body. The R-Line trim is a must, but even then you have a fender gap that looks out of place.
- the powertrain is clearly mapped to make it feel peppy up to around 70mph. Above that feels like what you would expect a 1.4T to feel like.
- the car is definitely more insulated than previous gens, so you get the good with the bad (more luxurious, quiet ride at the expense of some driver feedback and fun)
Overall, it's a clear improvement over the previous gen, and will probably appeal to a greater number of people.
Hopefully the GLI will remedy most of the cons listed above.
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Got to check one out at my VW dealership today. I have to say - I don't like it at all from a looks only standpoint. It doesn't look at all German or European - more like Korean. The front is horrible with the massive grill and busy hood lines.
The crease down the side is too dramatic and the rear lights don't look too great either. Interior looked typically VW although the controls and display are more aimed towards the driver than past VW's. I really don't like the new touch screens. The one in the car was filthy with fingerprints and it was very glossy unlike my current touch screen which seems more matte in finish.
I guess I will let it grow on me for a while because I rarely immediately embrace any new VW design but rather begin to appreciate it over time.
As a side note - VW's current wheels on Golf/GTI/Jetta are terrible. Yuck.