Guide: 5=Perfect; 3=Good; 1=Poor
Pros: What do you like about your 2011 Volkswagen Jetta?
The I5 engine.
Cons: How would you improve your 2011 Volkswagen Jetta?
Bring back the Jetta from the '90s.
2011 Volkswagen Jetta Review:
Compared to Hyundai Sonata, the new Jetta is a dismal failure. I really did want to overlook Jetta's inferiority compared to its competitors, because I loved my Jetta from the '90s.
But I couldn't.
First, the exterior design is ten years behind Honda. The new Jetta looks like any other mass produced midsize sedans. Other brands, such as Toyota, Honda and Hyundai, figured out how to spruce up the look without sacrificing the efficient manufacturing system. VW is way behind on this.
Second, the interior does not feel special anymore. What clearly differenciated Volkswagen from the others in the past was VW's attention to detail on every single knob or handle or surface that the driver touched. The Jetta's interior feels no longer luxurious, but cheaper even than the Hyundai Sonata.
Third, while the size of the Jetta became like a family sedan, the back seats are not that child friendly. From where the cup holders' locations to the shape of the seats, families with kids in cars seats may not like in small little inconveniences.
On a positive note, the Jetta still feels like a driver's car. I loved how the engine felt and sounded as I accelerated. Others, even the venerable Honda, made the car a bit too timid.
Overall, the new Jetta is an adequate car, but nothing exciting. I had two long test drives, but could not pull the trigger. I am now waiting for the new Camry that is coming out later this year. If the new Camry disappoints, then I might consider the Jetta (or the Passat) one more time.
Rate this review: