Current Model
The Jetta has easy-to-use controls, great fuel economy, and good cabin room. The 147-hp, 1.4-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine that's coupled to an eight-speed automatic transmission feels a bit sleepy at times but delivers responsive acceleration upon demand.
Fuel economy is excellent at 34 mpg overall. The ride is absorbent but can be too tender over sharp bumps. Handling is competent but a bit dull. The cabin is relatively quiet for a compact sedan. Most versions come with faux leather seats and automatic climate controls, giving the car an air of premium ambience. Advanced safety features, such as automatic emergency braking, forward collision warning, and blind spot warning, are standard except on the base trim. A sporty GLI version, which shares components with the VW GTI, is also available.
Road Test
Predicted Reliability
Predicted Owner Satisfaction
2019-2020
2019 Redesign Year
The seventh generation Jetta has easy-to-use controls, great fuel economy, good cabin room, and the availability of upscale features. The 147-hp, 1.4-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that's coupled to an eight-speed automatic transmission feels a bit sleepy at times, but delivers responsive acceleration upon demand.
Fuel economy is excellent at 34 mpg overall, matching VW's diesel offerings from a decade ago. The ride is absorbent but can be too tender over sharp bumps. Handling is competent but a bit dull. The cabin is relatively quiet for a compact sedan. Most versions come with faux leather seats and automatic climate controls, giving the car an air of premium ambience. A number of advanced safety features, including automatic emergency braking, forward collision warning, and blind spot warning, are available.
$15,975 - $25,725
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$14,725 - $23,250
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
2011-2018
2011 Redesign Year
The 2011 redesign brought a more spacious rear seat, along with cheaper interior materials and handling that wasn't as crisp. Ultimately the gasoline-powered 2011 Jetta scores too low for us to recommend it.
(The car has been improved gradually since then.) The diesel-powered Jetta TDI is a more appealing car; however, it is also one of the VW models called into question for emissions test violations. If you're considering one of these, make sure it passes smog before you buy it. A 37-mpg hybrid debuted in 2013. New for 2016 is a refined and energetic 1.4-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that got 32 mpg overall in our testing.
$12,525 - $19,800
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$11,750 - $17,200
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OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$10,425 - $15,550
Average Retail Price
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OWNER REPORTED MPG
$7,875 - $13,175
Average Retail Price
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OWNER REPORTED MPG
$5,100 - $11,475
Average Retail Price
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OWNER REPORTED MPG
$4,400 - $9,425
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OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$5,825 - $7,950
Average Retail Price
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OWNER REPORTED MPG
$5,350 - $7,225
Average Retail Price
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OWNER REPORTED MPG
2005-2010
2005 Redesign Year
A beautifully finished and sharp-handling premium small car, the Jetta has long been a jewel. Normally aspirated and turbocharged four-cylinder engines, a gruff five-cylinder, a thrifty turbodiesel, and a six-cylinder powerplant have all been offered.
Further, the VW has good safety equipment and its crash-test results are commendable. Before its 2006 redesign, the backseat was particularly cramped, but the car rode beautifully. For 2006, the Jetta grew larger, and the base four-cylinder was replaced by a five-cylinder with more torque, though its character is somewhat gruff. The turbodiesel wagon we tested with a manual transmission averaged an impressive 36 mpg.
$5,050 - $8,300
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$4,425 - $6,575
Average Retail Price
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OWNER REPORTED MPG
$4,150 - $4,650
Average Retail Price
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OWNER REPORTED MPG
$3,575 - $5,100
Average Retail Price
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OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$3,200 - $4,975
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$2,825 - $4,850
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
1999-2004
A 1999 redesign improved an already capable car and gave the Jetta new styling. This latest version offers a host of well-designed interior touches but also a tighter rear seat.
A wagon model was added for 2001. Four, turbo-Four, turbodiesel, and V6 engines are available. The Jetta is a practical, relatively inexpensive car with a responsive 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine, a supple ride, and a comfortable interior. The sporty GLX packs a powerful V6, but even the plainer GL and GLS versions offer excellent handling and responsive steering. 
$2,725 - $4,575
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$2,675 - $4,325
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$2,650 - $3,925
Average Retail Price
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OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$2,650 - $3,575
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$2,650 - $3,325
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
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