Open gallery Close by Matt Prior 1 February 2012 Follow @matty_prior Share
How we test cars
The new Volkswagen Jetta could be on the back foot before it even arrives. British buyers don’t usually go for small saloons, so its ilk is largely seen as a filler between the bigger-selling C-segment and D-segment models.
Don’t discount it, though. This is no longer simply a Volkswagen Golf with a boot. Volkswagen has endowed its perennially forgettable small saloon with some individuality, so it now has a look and possibly a purpose all of its own.
The industry might focus on hatchbacks in the C-segment, but there are plenty who like the executive look of a saloonTim DicksonChief sub-editor
Substantial boot space and an exterior now suggestive of a small but well formed Volkswagen Passat give much more on-paper appeal than the Jetta enjoyed before. With a range starting at £19,580, it’s also very competitively priced. The best seller in the line-up is likely to be the 148bhp 2.0 TDI in base SE trim, which comes in at £23,205.
Other engines from Volkswagen’s familiar line-up include 123bhp and 148bhp versions of the 1.4 TFSI petrol, while the diesel range is made up of a 108bhp and 148bhp variants of the 2.0 TDI.
The Jetta is still a car pieced together from familiar parts, but its fresh looks and enticing price tag could make it one of VW’s top all-rounders. The best bits of the Volkswagen Passat and Volkswagen Golf in a well priced package? Or a model that exists only to mask the white noise between the other models that bookend it in the VW range? We’re here to find out.
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Verdict Model tested: Rating:
Volkswagen Jetta 2010-2018
GoodExceptional fuel economySpaciousnessFine cabin ergonomicsBadLack of engaging dynamicsPricier than some rivalsUninteresting interior