The 2019 Volkswagen Jetta: What the critics say
In a world overrun by SUVs, “a well-rounded compact sedan strangely begins to feel special.” The seventh-generation Volkswagen Jetta doesn’t aim to wow anyone, but with its new platform, sleeker exterior, cushier ride, and roomier cabin, it gives Americans ample reason to support its continued run as VW’s best-selling car. The German automaker is still master of “budget chic” interiors, and despite the new Jetta’s extra 3 inches in length, it remains a “snappy” little sedan that feels “more bolted down” than most rivals.
But where the Jettas of old were “taut, agile, and enjoyable to drive,” this new one is, to us, “a bit dull.” It delivers solid but less-than-entertaining handling, and the new six-speed manual transmission is available only in the base model. Still, VW has added value—including alloy rims for all models—while cutting the entry-level price by $100. The Jetta now “piles on the comfort, ease of use, and upscale features.”
New York Daily News
The base engine, a 1.4-liter turbocharged four-cylinder, hasn’t changed. But torque is up, and a “slick-shifting” new eight-speed automatic gearbox provides quicker acceleration, more relaxed cruising, and better fuel economy (34 mpg on average). Though the “nuanced goodness” of the complete package won’t set many hearts aflutter, “VW has made a good compact sedan even better.”