2019 Volkswagen Jetta First Drive, Price, Performance and Review

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In previous generations, the Volkswagen Jetta delivered a decidedly European driving experience and had refinement in spades. In its current iteration, the 2019 Volkswagen Jetta is all about size — a large cabin and trunk are its standout features. Refinement and fun are nowhere to be found. It’s as if Volkswagen finally caved and traded the Jetta’s uniquely Germanic values for generic attributes in the search for mass-market appeal.Certainly, having a lot of interior space is a good thing. And the Jetta boasts a couple of turbocharged engines that provide strong acceleration and agreeable fuel economy. But your choices for a small sedan are varied, and many of them surpass the Jetta in terms of style, handling and features.It’s likely that Volkswagen will completely overhaul the Jetta for the 2019 model year. In the meantime, might we suggest taking a look at models such as the Honda Civic, Kia Forte and Mazda 3? Volkswagen’s Golf hatchback is a more desirable choice as well.

what’s new

For 2019 Volkswagen Jetta receives only minor changes. There are two additional trim levels (the Wolfsburg Edition and SE Sport), but the GLI trim loses the manual transmission option. Cosmetic alterations are also subdued, with various new wheel designs and several trims receiving a new chrome grille.

2019 Volkswagen Jetta Redesign and Price

we recommend

The range-topping GLI is the most compelling of all the Jetta trims for those shoppers who prioritize performance. But we recommend that most buyers take a look at the SE Sport, which hits the sweet spot among Jettas for performance, comfort and value. Its engine has more oomph than the one in the base Jetta, and it has a solid complement of standard creature comforts.

READ : 2018 Volkswagen Golf Review, specs and Release date

trim levels & features

The 2019 Volkswagen Jetta is available in six trim levels — S, Wolfsburg Edition, SE, SE Sport, SEL and GLI. All Jettas are four-door sedans that seat five occupants, and all are offered exclusively with front-wheel drive. The trim levels are differentiated mainly by engine and feature content.

2019 Volkswagen Jetta Exterior

trim tested

Each vehicle typically comes in multiple versions that are fundamentally similar. The ratings in this review are based on our full test of the 2016 Volkswagen Jetta SEL Premium (turbo 1.8L inline-4 | 6-speed automatic | FWD).

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NOTE: Since this test was conducted, the current Jetta has received some revisions, including the addition of driver assistance features and minor revisions to the infotainment system. Our findings remain broadly applicable to this year’s Jetta.


The Jetta’s generous size would be the reason to consider this car, especially in one of its less expensive lower trims. Quite simply, this is one of the most affordable ways to get a new family-friendly sedan.

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