One of the bittersweet moments of buying a new car is that many times the newest years models aren’t very different from the previous years. The newest 2020 Volkswagen Jetta does not follow this pattern and has redesigned their popular car in the seventh generation.
Volkswagen has its start from the late 1930s in Germany with the purpose of being a “people’s car” which is the English translation of the name. Following the reputation of high-end German engineering, while the price being within the range of many individuals the Volkswagen fleet has had a good reputation in the USA (where Volkswagen is known for great lease deals). The Jetta specifically has been able to pack a good engine, comfort, luxury and compete in all classes of the of other compact family cars.
The 2020 Jetta interior looks and feels like a high-end vehicle. The dashboard has been upgraded with a luxury feel and well-placed controls. The touchscreen interface is well placed and built into the dash. It faces the driver with clear and easy to use controls around and below it for the climate controls and other standard controls. It is fully compatible with android and apple smartphone Bluetooth to enhance the multimedia experience. The base model and all upper models have good quality materials with a sturdy steering wheel. A cell phone compartment in the dash is becoming a popular feature in new cars, which the car does not lack.
The seat material is cloth on the base level and leather for nearly all others and is soft and comfortable for short and long drives. Logically placed around the seats are decent sized cup holders, standard door pockets and a center console. Slightly more space is created by the shift to an electronic parking brake which is much more consumer friendly and easier on the eyes.
The backseat, like many other compact cars, is not ideal for full size adults but is more than enough for children and adequate leg and head room. The front seats have better head and leg room with comfort for adults pushing 6 feet in height.
Plenty of extras are made available for upgrades. Wrap around ambient lighting, heated seats (front and back) and heated steering wheel, along with a moon-roof are all options for the consumers. The base sound system is not superb, but upgrades are available for those consumers which demand clearer audio.
The Jetta has a crisp looking exterior which competes with higher end automobiles like the Audi. It does not and was not designed for the more aggressive sporty drivers and has the looks of a conservative safe family vehicle. The wheels are either 16 or 17 inches allow depending on the model and while the look nice, don’t attract too much attention. The curved front and rear carry the models traditional appearance while looking perfectly in its element for 2020.
The LED headlights are standard and provide excellent visibility for night driving. There are upgrade available for fog/running lights for an even better visibility. The slightly larger size, for both the interior and exterior will please most drivers, including the trunk space.
The engine performance of the Jetta is a 147hp engine which is turbocharged 1.4 liter. Due to newer demands for fuel efficient more and more cars are including turbocharged engines to provide the extra power drivers demand without the larger engine size. The models of the Jetta can get 30+ mpg in the city and around 40 mpg on the highway. There are options for 6 speed manual or 8 speed automatics in most models, and the automatic does have a manual shifting option as well which can be very handy for certain driving conditions, like hilly terrains.
There is some road and wind noise when driving highway speeds, but the cabin is built well enough to eliminate most of the noise. Engine noise can be noticeable when attempting quick accelerations, like passing another car on the highway, due to the smaller size of the engine and at time the rpms will need to be pushed. But overall the acceleration and speed is decent for the size.
The chassis of the car has migrated to the Volkswagen MQB modular platform. This is a new assembly method used by some manufacturers which shares the core of the car with other are in the lineup. This allows for quick and easier assembly and availability of parts, and also for costs saving both the manufacturer and the consumer. And improves in some ways the handling and ride. However, the rear suspension quality has also been adjusted by removing independent rear suspension, which also is becoming an industry norm. The independent rear suspension removal is a side effect of the modular under-body construction and also to save costs and weight (which increase MPG) but for the average driver this will likely not be noticed.
Price and options
There are 5 models of the 2020 version of the car to choose from. The base model starts in the mid 18,000 with more or less the bare minimum competitive car in 2020. Each model increase offers more luxury, technology, and features like better audio, moonroof, larger wheels etc. The engine in all models is the same so performance itself will not vary. There is a new 6 year or 72,000 mile warranty for the Jetta which is transferable if the car is sold in the time period. And the safety ratings live up to the Volkswagen name, while newer safety feature like assisted cruise control, driver assistance and traffic alert help the driver to remain safe. The design and features allow the Jetta to rank among the highest in crash tested measured in the USA. Overall, the new Jetta is one of, if not the most competitively priced car for its size and performance, competing with domestic and foreign manufactures. The can be an excellent option for the conservative minded individuals looking for luxury at a great price.
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