Rowing with the gears of an 2015 Volkswagen Jetta S TDI’s six-speed manual transmission as we roll across the scenic two-laners of Virginia’s horse country, we marvel at the fact that we’re actually wonderful time. Yep, fun. In the Jetta.
Never would we've expected this when Volkswagen first launched the present Jetta for the 2011 type year. As it boasted improved space, son-of-Audi styling, plus a more competitive price, the Jetta was soundly criticized for its utter dearth of character, relentlessly cheap-feeling cabin, gruff five-cylinder basic engine, and chassis which had regressed in to the Ancient with rear drum brakes plus a torsion-beam back suspension.
After that, VW has produced incremental and substantial enhancements for the North American bread-butterer, and by 2014, all U.S.-market Jettas featured four-wheel disc brakes and an independent rear suspension. Also for 2014, the latest EA888 1.8-liter turbocharged base four-cylinder engine forced the cantankerous 2.5-liter five-cylinder into retirement. Enter the 2015 Jetta, featuring its midcycle update that brings new front and rear design, enhanced interior components (including-at last-a soft-touch dash top), plus a new EA288 diesel engine in TDI models. Alas, it would appear that the Jetta has now become the vehicle Volkswagen must have been building since the beginning.
Usually, the most critical parts of a vehicle’s midcycle refresh are modified lumination and fascia elements, but in the 2015 Jetta’s case, they are arguably at least interesting of the changes. A brand new grille focuses on the car’s width, as does the latest back bumper, as new headlamps offer more widely offered LED daytime running lights and the taillamps evoke its Audi-brand cousins. But for the first-time, perhaps the least expensive Jetta drives on aluminum wheels. How much the revisions increase the Jetta’s appears is up to a viewer, nevertheless arguably it has become actually harder to tell the difference relating to the Jetta and the one-size-up Passat.
The cabin, once among the Jetta’s worst attributes, has become a convincingly nice area to hang out for 2015. It’s still Teutonically austere and the door panels are hard plastic, however the dashboard appears far classy, dressed since it is with tunneled indicators and reflective piano-black trim sections. High-end material such as navigation has trickled below higher trims to low- and mid-grade ranges, and interestingly, an available touch-screen infotainment system without navigation is in fact bigger than those of the navigation-equipped cars. And the seats on the S, SE, and SEL models we drove were secure and supportive.
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