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2010 Volkswagen Jetta

Overview
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2010 Volkswagen Jetta Review

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A cut above the generic four-door sedan, the 2010 Volkswagen Jetta borrows mechanical components from the upscale Audi division, provides an exceptionally strong safety rating and a list of standard and optional equipment rarely found in this class. With slightly less rear-seat legroom than the more expensive Passat, the Jetta still provides the kind of "big car" feel you won't find in many of its competitors. On the downside, the Jetta does not offer a V6 engine – although the sporty Wolfsburg model's turbocharged four-cylinder powerplant delivers the power of a V6 with the fuel economy of a frugal four. The really big news, however, is the availability of a 50-state compliant TDI clean diesel engine, which can achieve upwards of 42 miles per gallon in highway driving.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you're looking for a sedan with European ride and handling capabilities, the 2010 Volkswagen Jetta offers German engineering at an attractive price.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you're looking for that "old-school" VW look and feel, the fifth-generation Jetta's styling doesn't convey the same sense of youthful enthusiasm as its predecessors. Although improving, VW's reliability and repair history still lag behind its Japanese competitors.

What's New for 2010

The 2010 Jetta receives a revised interior, including a new instrument cluster, air conditioning control panel and steering wheel. SE, SEL and TDI trims all acquire standard Bluetooth hands-free phone connectivity and premium audio upgrade. The sporty GLI has been discontinued.

Driving the Jetta

Driving Impressions The 2010 Volkswagen Jetta provides good handling, a competent and quiet ride and some of the best seats for long distance driving we've experienced. While the 2.5-liter five cylinder doesn't...

make the Jetta the fastest car in its class, it's now fast enough to nose its way past the pack when it has to. The five-cylinder is bit buzzy at times, and its flat torque curve does little to inspire daring passing maneuvers. At highway speeds the Jetta remains composed and stable, but if your favorite leg of any journey is the twisty one, the Jetta delivers ample cornering ability complemented by quick, smooth manual Tiptronic downshifts and a satisfying exhaust note. If you can swing the extra cash, go for the Wolfsburg Edition. It offers the same 2.0-liter turbocharged engine used in the GTI, giving great performance and, depending on your transmission choice, identical or better fuel economy as the non-turbo 2.5.

Six-Speed Tiptronic Transmission
The newest VW transmission shifts quickly and smoothly in three distinct shift modes – regular and sport automatic modes, plus a manual mode.

Rear Seat Side-Impact Airbags
When combined with the standard side-curtain airbags, this option adds another level of security for rear-seat passengers.

2010 Volkswagen Jetta Details
2010 Volkswagen Jetta photo Interior

While rear-seat passengers won't sit with their knees at their chins (a position well known to passengers of previous Jetta models), there is still not as much rear seat leg room as found in the similarly priced Mazda MAZDA6. To be fair, the Jetta competes with the likes of the Honda Civic and Mazda MAZDA3, which offer roughly the same interior dimensions. Fit and finish is first rate, as are overall ergonomics. A height-adjustable passenger seat with manual lumbar support, a rarity on so many vehicles, is standard on the Jetta, as are heated front seats. Volkswagen's familiar red and blue dash lighting still delights the eye, and at night every switch, knob or button seen during the day is backlit for your convenience. The 60/40 rear seats can be folded flat and, on SE, SEL and TDI trims, include a center armrest trunk pass through. Other cool features unique to the Jetta are power windows with pinch protection that can be raised or lowered when the key is turned and held in the door lock.

Exterior
2010 Volkswagen Jetta photo

Ironically, the newest version of the best-selling European car in the U.S. features several styling elements seemingly imported from Japan, and oddly fails to receive the sleek new front end provided to the Jetta Sport Wagon and Golf. This model marks the largest Jetta to date, touting seven additional inches over the last generation. It also ranks high in content, offering such useful cold weather features as heated side mirrors and washer nozzles. Whether you find the less-playful styling more appealing may depend on whether you think of the Jetta as a fun beach cruiser or a high-value German sedan.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The 2010 Volkswagen Jetta comes with an AM/FM stereo with MP3-compatible CD player, one-touch up/down power windows, power mirrors, cruise control, manual climate control, outside temperature display, heated front seats and washer nozzles, four-way adjustable steering column and eight-way adjustable cloth front seats with manual lumbar support and power recline (driver's seat only). Standard safety equipment includes electronic traction and stability control, four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes (ABS), active head restraints and front side-impact and full-length side-curtain airbags.

Optional Equipment

Optional equipment on the Jetta varies by trim and includes leather or V-Tex leatherette seating, power-adjustable driver's and passenger's seats, in-dash AM/FM stereo with MP3-compatible six-disc CD changer, iPod interface, rear seat side-impact airbags, a 115-volt outlet (SEL and TDI) and a trip computer. Additional options include a six-speed Tiptronic automatic transmission (standard on SEL), six-speed DSG automatic (TDI and Wolfsburg), power sunroof, premium sound system, navigation, alloy wheels, SIRIUS Satellite Radio and 12-way adjustable front seats with driver's memory.

Under the Hood

Volkswagen offers three engine choices for the Jetta: a 2.5-liter in-line five cylinder, a 2.0-liter turbocharged gasoline four-cylinder and a 2.0-liter turbodiesel. The recently-improved 2.5-liter is good for 170 horsepower, which is on par with most of the cars in its class. The long throws and sloppy feel of the standard five-speed manual transmission, however, is a bit of a disappointment, especially coming from a company known for its enthusiast-oriented cars. Best stick with the Tiptronic automatic with this engine. Also available is the new 2.0-liter TDI turbodiesel, which offers less horsepower but an amazing 236 pound-feet of torque, the power you need for rapid acceleration. The TDI diesel and turbocharged Wolfsburg Edition trims also gets a vastly better six-speed manual gear box or the option of the wonderfully quick DSG auto manual transmission.

2.5-liter in-line 5
170 horsepower @ 5700 rpm
177 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4250 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 22/30 (manual), 23/30 (automatic)

2.0-liter in-line 4, turbocharged
200 horsepower @ 5100 rpm
207 lb.-ft. of torque @ 1800 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 21/31 (manual), 24/32 (automatic)

2.0-liter in-line 4 diesel, turbocharged
140 horsepower @ 4000 rpm
236 lb.-ft. of torque @ 1750-2500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 30/41 (manual), 30/42 (automatic)

Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?

2010 Volkswagen Jetta Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.7
Out of 10

Based on 965 Ratings for the 2005 - 2010 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.9/10
    Quality
    8.9/10
  • Reliability
    8.9/10
    Performance
    9.1/10
  • Comfort
    8.9/10
    Styling
    9.1/10

Bad car!

By on Friday, June 27, 2014

I owned and sold this car
Reason: terrible car

10 1.0
overall rating 1 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
1/10
Value
1/10
Reliability
1/10
Quality
1/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "I'ts a "drivers car" when it runs"

Cons: "Breaks down and strands you over and over again"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"I purchased my Jetta TDI new. Turbo went out at 30K and 60K. Car left me stranded on the road due to other "electronic issues". Hard to start or would not start in the winter. This is by far the worst car I've ever owned - and I've owned some American cars built in the 70's... Volkswagen - you fooled me once."

5 people out of 8 found this review helpful

I love this car. It's a great vehicle.

By on Thursday, June 12, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 56,500

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "It drives like a dream. Great price for me."

Cons: "Cup holders are back a bit too far for me."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I had a 1967 or 1968 Volkswagen Beetle. I drove 45 miles to and from work each day. It never let me down. Gas at that time was about 19 cents a gallon. I filled it up once a week for around $5 to $6. I knew how great a car Volkswagen was and was very happy when I was showed the Volkswagen Jetta. I bought it in January 2014 with about 53,486 miles on it. The color is silver, beautiful. It was a used car, but still had that new smell. I am very petite (4'9") and it sits me up where I can see over the steering wheel and still reach the petals with complete comfort. It is so snappy to drive. I hope to have it until I pass away since I'm elderly. That could be tomorrow or 10 to 20 years from now, if I'm lucky."

2 people out of 5 found this review helpful

Worst German vehicle I have ever owned !!!

By on Monday, June 09, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 75,000

10 3.0
overall rating 3 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
3/10
Value
5/10
Reliability
3/10
Quality
2/10
Performance
2/10
Styling
2/10
Comfort
2/10

Pros: "Gas Mileage."

Cons: "Poor quality."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"Numerous repairs needed in addition to the three recalls. A/C unit went our after only 5 years, paid $1400 to repair and it still doesn't cool properly. I understand now why VW only has 36 mo. 36,000 mile warranty."

1 person out of 3 found this review helpful

German quality

By on Tuesday, June 03, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 60,029

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Quality, technology."

Cons: "None."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I bought this 2009 Jetta with 27,000 miles and it now just passed the 60,000. Short local drives only mostly, except a back and forth trip from Miami to Las Vegas, 7,000 miles. Excellent experience, drives like an airplane. No strange noise, no engine heat, acceptable fuel consumption and very comfortable ride. Excellent radio. A feeling of safety. Extremely stable."

1 person out of 2 found this review helpful

Most reliable and overall favorite

By on Saturday, May 31, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 198,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Ive had this car for nearly five years and it has been my favorite car that Ive owned. Overall best value too. The only issues Ive ever had were minor and not a road hazard."

1 person out of 2 found this review helpful

Great Vehicle

By on Sunday, May 25, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 66,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
6/10

Pros: "Great gas mileage, Very Reliable, comfortable."

Cons: "not a sports car, an normal 4 door, no complaints"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

Picking up my Car... in Kaiserslautern, DE

"I chose this car based on the Gas Mileage, and reputation of the Volkswagen. I was no disappointed. I have had this vehicle for 5 years. Each year, I am happier and happier. So far, no major issues. Drives great in snow and icy conditions. I am even more pleased with the gas mileage than I believed. I get anywhere from 39 to 50 mpg (depending on time of year and driving conditions). I was able to drive from Gulf Shores, AL to Louisville, KY on one tank of gas."

2 people out of 3 found this review helpful

Picking up my Car... in Kaiserslautern, DE

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?