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Despite the fact that Volkswagen's 2009 Jetta TDI sedan and Sportwagen cost more and have yet to get here, plus fuel prices in the five-dollar range, customer desire for the sparkless VeeDubs is running high. Perhaps buyers don't realize that these ain't the old Rabbit rattlers that cost three cents to run and would rack up a billion miles with five tanks of fuel. TDI maintenance costs are not insignificant, but the allure of inherent efficiency has folks putting their money where their mouths are and some dealers have sold out before even taking delivery. All in all, an auspicious start for the latest TDI Jetta.
Not faring as well is the Tiguan, VW's smallest 'ute. While we find the Tiguan delightful to drive and well executed besides the smallish cargo area (Jetta Wagon FTW), the launch hasn't gone as swimmingly as Wolfsburg had hoped. Maybe the TDI powertrain could add some sales sparkle to the Tiguan. It would fit, being on basically the same platform as the Golf.

[Source: Automotive News]


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  • 59 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      Volkswagen's 2009 Jetta TDI sedan and Sportwagen cost more because a brand means money. And money means psychologicall quality.
      • 7 Years Ago
      350K miles is just a rough figure as well. I'm not sayign that the gas car will peter out in 175K miles per se, but it's still not unusual to expect a diesel engine to last far longer than a gas engine.

      So, replace the 350K example with 500K miles or more. if i had to choose between two similar engines, one being a gas engine with 350K miles and another being a 350K mile diesel, I'd prefer to trust the diesel. Call me crazy.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Yay! Let's keep creating demand for more $5 gal diesel! Here's rooting for $6 gal!
      • 7 Years Ago
      My mom has a 2002 Jetta TDI with close to 200,000 miles on it. She has loved everything about, has had no significant mechanical issues and still gets 47-49 miles per gallon and near 600 miles per tank of fuel. I'm a big fan.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Found some more mileage info. While VWVortex is the largest VW forum, TDIClub.com would be the best place for TDI-related stuff. They also have an entire section devoted to threads about fuel economy.
        http://forums.tdiclub.com/forumdisplay.php?f=24

        There are several threads dedicated to posts from people who have surpassed specific range goals(700mi/tank, 900mi/tank etc.) They also have a monthly MPG contest.

        It's not limited to just Jetta owners though and there are several models of TDI's so the range again is related to the size of the fuel tank since Passats and Touaregs have larger tanks. Not to mention the other decades of TDI-powered vehicles VW has made over the years.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Quote from Why not the LS2LS7? - "You're not going to double mpg by just putting in an equivalent Diesel engine. You'd have to give up a fair bit of performance just to get to 50% better mpg."


        Where was performance ever mentioned?

        The same can be said of putting a less powerful engine into any vehicle. You may get increased mileage, but at the expense of performance. That said, the increased torque of a diesel engine makes a huge difference in driveability. This 2.0L has 33% more torque than my 1.8T powered car, which in itself is fairly torquey. I'm not expecting similar 0-60 times, nor should I. But, I challenge you to find another 140hp car for sale in the US which attains the mileage of the '09 TDI. The TDI is designed for economy, my GTI is designed with performance in mind.

        So, what was your point?
        • 7 Years Ago
        One of the best comparisons of torque and HP I've seen lately is this,

        "TORQUE answers the question "Will it be able to do it?"
        POWER answers the question "How fast will it do it?"

        It's simple and easy to understand. Others include, "Torque is what gets you there, power is what you brag about" and "Torque is what gets you up to speed, power is what keeps you there".

        As far as the TDI Jetta performance, surely it won't win many drag races, but it's again built with economy in mind. That being the case, it will have no problem keeping up with other similarly-designed vehicles like the Prius. The difference will be farther in favor of the TDI when the cars are loaded down with cargo and/or passengers or when the driving terrain features significant elevation changes.

        It is correct that higher RPM's can allow torque multiplication and there is some validity there. But, from an economy standpoint, an engine not working as hard generates better fuel economy. So, an engine making it's max torque at a low RPM(and over a wide range), won't have to work as hard as an engine which has to rev much higher to achive higher torque figures. Again, refer back to the first comparison.
        • 7 Years Ago
        My point is if VW sold a crap-slow gas version of the Jetta in the US it would get better mpg too.

        As to the Diesel having more torque, you're talking about torque at the shaft. This torque never makes it to the ground because the redline on the engine is low. This requires you to shift sooner to a higher gear and this takes away the torque you speak of.

        Remember, torque at the wheels is what determines performance, and since Diesel cars perform so much worse, it indicates they are making a lot less torque at the wheels. Bragging about torque at the shaft is pointless.

        People talk about the payback of paying more for a Diesel engine and for Diesel fuel per gallon, but saving money in the end because overall consumption is lower. But a smaller gas engine could probably provide similar savings without having to pay more (in fact less!) up front and per gallon.

        There are few comparos that compare cars that have comparable performance between gas and Diesel to see which really is cheaper to run. One of the few I've seen was on Fifth Gear where they compared the BMW MINI Cooper S and BMW MINI Cooper D. The Cooper D only got 9% better fuel economy and didn't perform as well despite seeming like the engine was working much harder than the gas engine was in the other car.
          • 7 Years Ago
          I can't believe you're pooh-poohing a 9% increase in fuel economy. For me, that would be $27 a month at today's prices.

          Diesel has gone from being cheaper than RUG to more expensive than PUG. I expect the price compared with gas to continue to fluctuate.

          Long-term, the diesel, with its lower maintenance costs, including fewer oil changes, wins out. In addition there are more alternatives such as biodiesel and other "manufactured from waste" fuels that a diesel car can use.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Quote from why not the LS2LS7? - "There are few comparos that compare cars that have comparable performance between gas and Diesel to see which really is cheaper to run. One of the few I've seen was on Fifth Gear where they compared the BMW MINI Cooper S and BMW MINI Cooper D. The Cooper D only got 9% better fuel economy and didn't perform as well despite seeming like the engine was working much harder than the gas engine was in the other car." -

        Being that they tested the diesel against the S model, I'd have to say I'd be surprised if the gas engine was working harder. I haven't seen that comparison though so I will comment no further.

        The best comparison I've seen lately was from Edmunds where they tested 4 different vehicles, a Prius, an '05 Jetta TDI, a Ford Focus, and a Smart fortwo. The Focus and the Smart fulfill the gas engine part, with the Focus probably being closest to the Jetta since the Smart is so much smaller.

        http://www.edmunds.com/advice/fueleconomy/articles/126370/article.html

        The Jetta soundly trounced the Focus in mileage and was better than the Smart all-around as well, only being worse(by 1.4mpg) in the city section. Over the course of the whole trip, the Jetta achieved almost 32% better mileage than the Focus.

        It also compared very well against the Prius. Again, only being beaten in the city section. If it weren't for the higher cost of diesel, the Jetta would have come quite close to winning the comparison.

        Either way, not a bad performance by a 3yr older vehicle using a reletively low-tech engine especially considering that the '09 is expected to be even more fuel efficient(if the EPA figures are any indication) and significantly more powerful as well.
      • 7 Years Ago
      People in Europe who order a Tiguan today have to wait up to 6 months for delivery. So maybe VW is just not too keen on shipping the Tiguan to the states and sell it here when they can make a much larger profit with the car in europe.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Actually, TDI pricing has been released, and people are putting deposits on incoming cars. We've sold a few Tiguans, but have some on the lot, and all have been 2wd so far. Have not sold any Jetta Sportwagens yet.
      • 7 Years Ago
      The Tiguan is offered as a TDI. I'm currently on vacation in Italy and I've seen only a handful of both Jetta/Golf wagons and Tiguans, and all are powered by the TDI engine. So it should only be a matter of time before we do see the Tiguan here as a diesel.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I'd like to buy one, my dealer isn't interested in selling me one. First I was told no ordering, just first come first serve (bidding war?). Then it was changed to they will order cars- for $1500 over MSRP. Can they piss off their customers any more? They keep saying they have this long list of customers, I wonder how long this list will be when diesel hits $6 a gallon this winter, and the Dow is under 10,000? For me, I've started looking elsewhere.
      • 7 Years Ago
      FYI, Tiguan IS available with 2 common rail TDI diesels, 140 and 170 hp. In Europe, of course.

      So it does fit.
      • 7 Years Ago
      If I were in the market for a small/efficient SUV, the Tiguan would start my list. But I'm not.

      And a lot of people may still be seeing it as an SUV of sorts and just shying away from it.
        • 7 Years Ago
        nothing about the tiguan strikes me as efficient. in fact, it's the least efficient 2.0T or four cylinder powered model in VW's range.

        The adverts should read "Tiguan, with the mileage of the R32, and less space then a jetta wagon"
      • 7 Years Ago
      I would like to add one more note on the TDI. The EPA fuel mileage is 29 city-40 highway. Each VW dealer has received one for test drive purposes. You can't miss them, they are white with green leaves of the hood and fenders. More on that in a minute. We have observed a combine mileage of over 38 mpg's in normal suburban driving. Although not as good as the 04 TDI, that is pretty good. Also, the EPA changed the way they determine fuel mileage. That, along with being 50 state(California choke) emission and the particualte filter, has lowered the EPA mileage ratings. Alot quieter than the 04, also.

      As far as the green leaves(they are supposed to look like flames)? VW is advertising the TDI as "Good clean fun!" Although it's emissions are very low, I do not think any one will confuse the TDI as "Good clean fun". Ironically, they are not advertising the fuel economy or the long lasting reliability of a diesel. They just want to spend their time dispelling myths on the publics negative perceptions of diesels. Hey VW, the are sold out. You do not need to advertise them.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I want a small, sporty SUV. I was waiting for the Tiguan before deciding what to buy. Unfortunately current exchange rates have made the vehicle too expensive. I can buy a late model used X3 for the same or less. Since what really wanted was a BMW, its too bad VW.
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