Her and His Reviews

July 2011

2011 Volkswagen Jetta

There are always two sides to everything, right? Well, the truth is there are many more than that! To keep our car reviews innovative and well-rounded, we are providing you with not just one, but two points of view on the same exact vehicle – Her and His perspectives.

Her: Anne Fleming, Car Buying Advocate,women-drivers.com
His: Don Hammonds, Writer, AutomobileJournal.com 

MSRP:$24,165.00 MSRP:$24,165.00
The redesigned 2011 Jetta delivers 2.5 liter, 170 horses in a five cylinder engine, yet it is rather vanilla of a drive with not so much get-up-and-go as previous models. Handling is sharp and responsive. 2.5 liter, 170 horsepower five cylinder engine. Drives okay, but it doesn't feel especially powerful. It also is not the smoothest VW engine I've driven. It just needs some smoothing out here and there. From what I'm told, it's one heck of a lot better than the base engine in the Jetta. On the upside, engine sound, handling, and other aspects of the car will happily remind you that you are driving a VW.
Fuel Economy
Economical with a 24 city, 31 highway rating. 24/31. Estimated annual fuel cost of $1,665 based on 15,000 miles of driving at $3 a gallon. Go ahead and increase that annual rate by another 25%.
The Car
Good news/bad news? While I assert that the new Jetta has lost its mojo, their sales through June are up over 30% over the same time period for 2010. The Euro, boxy feel of the back with its' distinctive grill has all flattened out to take no exception and now looks like a Forte, Optima or a Camry. Little details, like the window buttons, feel thin and cheap. The driver's side seating has no power to it; all manual adjustments are to be used. I'm afraid Jetta's missed the boat for excitement, personality and "gotta have it" qualities. So many other cars nowadays, including Kia and Hyundai and all of the big Three, have now passed up VW in the charisma category. Too bad.
Disc brakes, electronic differential lock, electronic stability control, tire monitoring system, driver/front passenger airbag supplemental restraint system, driver and front passenger side airbag supplemental restraint system, side curtain protection head impact airbags, front and rear. LATCH and child safety doors. Head restrains for all. Theft deterrent device. Driver and front passenger airbag supplemental restraint system, driver and front passenger side airbag supplemental restraint system, side curtain protection head impact airbags, front and rear. Head restrains for all seating positions, height adjustable seat belts and on and on. A very solidly built car that reminds you that you are being cared for quite well. Reassuring is the operative word here.
NAV system with touch screen, Bluetooth for hands free driving, SIRIUS radio, media device interface, etc. Navigation system with color touchscreen, BlueTooth, satellite radio, media device interface, six speed tiptronic automatic transmission, etc. antilock brakes, electronic stability control, electronic differential lock.
Aesthetics & Styling
The verdict is still out. With the updates made to the vehicle as well as the lowering of the sticker price-- as shown on paper and at the dealerships with their double digit sales increase ??it is working. So perhaps, Volkswagens intention is to be more universal and inconspicuous of a brand. A far cry from the design-centric and sassy CC. It will be interesting to see if such a bold move works, when KIA and Hyundai come out with their new 2012 models soon. What happened to Jetta? This car is so plain and devoid of personality and VW sensibilities, that it could be just any ol' car. I know, the sales are strong. But if you're going to sell a car these days, you better have something snappy and eye catching to draw people into the showrooms especially because all other factors, such as safety quality, fit and finish are pretty much the same across the board. But eye catching this Jetta is not. It's okay, but that's it.
3 years, 36,000 mile limited warranty
5 years, 60,000 mile Powertrain
3 years, 36,000 mile 24/7 Roadside Assistance
3 year, 36,000 mile limited warranty--not the least competitive with brands like Hyundai, Ford, Kia and many others. Power train waranty of five years and 60,000 miles isn't too bad.