In a year of modest but meaningful change, the 2014 Volkswagen lineup will see a number of revamps, highlighted by the arrival of a new and more fuel-efficient 1.8-liter turbocharged TSI 4-cylinder engine for its highest-volume models. Set to gradually replace the existing 170-horsepower/2.5-liter naturally-aspirated 5-cylinder base engine in the Beetle, Jetta and Passat lines, this new force-fed/direct-injected upgrade makes the same power but offers 7 more lb-ft of torque and is expected to improve highway mileage numbers by 17 percent in the Beetle and by 16 percent in the Jetta. The arrival of this new T-charged 1.8-liter engine will see Beetle Turbo models with their 2.0-liter/210-horse motivators re-designated as R-Line offerings and get more aggressive bumpers and side sills plus appropriate badging in the process. The highest profile 2014 Beetle will be the sporty retro-themed yellow-and-black GSR limited edition seen here that made its debut at the 2013 Chicago Auto Show.
While the Golf and GTI move into 2014 unchanged and as 5-door-only models in preparation for the spring arrival of the new Gen VII 2015 Golf, VW's best-selling Jetta sedan complements its new 1.8-liter base engine with the adoption of independent multilink rear suspension for all versions. A 30th Anniversary GLI model also will hit showrooms later in the year. The Jetta SportWagen will be a virtual carryover.
The Passat's engine changeover will start with the SEL trim and be accompanied by the fitment of a new electro-mechanical power steering system that also will be introduced on the Jetta. A Sport trim line arrives later in the year. The CC, Eos and Jetta SportWagen get minor detail upgrades while the Routan van moves to fleet-only status. On the SUV side of the ledger, the Tiguan and Touareg both add new R-Line models and gain a number of comfort/convenience touches. Finally, VW Car-Net connected services will be available on the Beetle, Jetta, Passat, CC, Eos and Tiguan.
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