• Sep 22nd 2010 at 1:00PM
  • 43
With over three months and 5,342 miles on our Volkswagen Jetta TDI Cup Street Edition long-termer, we've moved from the honeymoon phase to the daily grind, and now we're appreciating the little things.

Aside from averaging 39.2 mpg since our last update – which included a 10- hour trip to LA and back – there are a handful of thoughtful touches that continue to impress us. For instance? Carpeted bin liners. It may sound trite, but not hearing a plastic-on-plastic smack every time we throw our FastTrak into the door pocket is reassuring. Auto-up and down on all four windows is something you don't find often enough in this segment and it's a huge plus when clearing out the heat on a summer day. But our Favorite Little Thing? B-pillar mounted coat hooks. Throw your dry cleaning or sportcoat onto one of the hooks normally integrated into the rear grab handles and you've doubled your blind-spot. With VW's solution, visibility out back remains nearly unobstructed, assuming you hang your coat on the passenger side and not behind the driver's seat. We've also managed to cram four R-compound-shod wheels into the back (not for the Jetta, mind) with the rear seats folded down, and still had room for a toolbox, a few backpacks and a small tent. Not bad for a "compact sedan."

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      Seems to be holding up real well.
      • 4 Years Ago
      The auto up/down is one thing I'm REALLY going to miss going to my WRX when it gets here. My tC now is only 2 doors (compared to 4 for the WRX, obviously), but it's auto up/down for both and it has been one of those vastly underrated features that I absolutely love.

      Oddly enough, my g/f's Scion xD only has driver's auto DOWN. It is not auto up... even on the driver's window. WTF?

      The WRX will only have driver's up/down. I really wish I knew why full auto up/down was not a more common feature. How hard can it be to implement on all 2 or 4 windows if it is on the driver's window?
        • 4 Years Ago
        Auto Down/Up means you need a 5-position switch instead of a 3 position-switch for each window... and then you need various pinch-protection sensors to prevent a child's arm from getting cut off by the window... and those need to be calibrated so the window doesn't retreat back down on a slightly-bumpy road or by the window hitting the trim...

        Basically, it's that much more complicated than a regular power window to make/install/maintain. Hence, many car manufacturers are interested in having it only in the most used window(s) or just not installing them at all.

        Also, everyone complaining about how auto windows are not ubiquitous... you do realize you're complaining about having to hold a button for 3-4 seconds, right?
        • 4 Years Ago
        VW/Audi doesn't use multi-position switches for auto-up/down. At least they didn't in 1999. Meanwhile Saturn did in 1992 and my new Cadillac does (but omits auto-up for the rears!).

        Honestly, the feature was a bit annoying on the Audi because it would stop working from time to time. You'd have to then hold the switch up until the window closed, then release and hold it again for about 5 seconds. You might also have to do that to recalibrate the auto-down too.

        On top of all that, since the Audi didn't use a multi-position switch, none of my friends could figure out how to roll the window down just a little bit, which you had to do by pressing down and then down again rapidly. The question would always come up right after someone farted...

        All in all, I like the feature (inside switch version), but other than the driver's window (for paying tolls/drive-up windows) I don't think it's an absolute must especially if it isn't going to work right. The outside switch version (from the key) wasn't useful, you had to stand right next to the car to do it anyway. I had mine modded to work from the fob, but never used that either.
        • 4 Years Ago

        Nobody's complaining. It's just a nice feature that can't be super expensive to implement and makes the vehicle feel more luxurious, which on a VW/Audi is kind've the point. You pay the premium on a VW over... anything else that competes against it because it feels more well made and has the nifty, secretive featurs outlined in this comments section.

        If I could push a button on MY keyfob and hold it for X amount of seconds and roll all my windows down, I'd be a PIMP.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Other fun things with VWs - if you press down the window buttons a second or two longer - they fully retract into the window sills without having the window sticking up slightly.

      The moonroof also can be fully retracted by holding the knob farther to the right for a second or two. I'd guess it adds about 15-20% open space.

      And lastly - you have some excellent pictures of the o-snap handles next to the gear shift. Glad that VW thought of the unsuspecting passengers: a right hand-above-the-door handle and another to the left.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Actually, by holding down an extra 1-2 seconds, you are overriding the "Basic Settings" of the window motors controller, basically running the motor and frame to the max. I wouldn't recommend doing this as the stop point is determined by the resistance in the windows travels and a time set. Going beyond this continiously can and will burn out your motor.
      • 4 Years Ago
      What's it like on a daily basis to drive the car. Is it fun? Does it have enough low end grunt? Is this model year affected by the fuel pump problems?

      This seems like a good car but next time can you also include some driving impressions.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Auto-down all 4? I didn't know that even EXISTED.

      Heck, auto-down on the fronts is nice, but all 4? That's impressive luxury right there. One of the simplest features that makes such a difference :D
        • 4 Years Ago
        My GS400 has that it. I love the ALL Auto Up feature
        • 4 Years Ago
        Don't forget the auto-up feature, on all, 4 as well...
        • 4 Years Ago
        I bought a Forte because for just over $16k I got more features than competition $18k+ either had as an option, or that they didn't even have.

        The point being that forty bucks on top of a purchase that costs five figures isn't a huge deal, and I don't see why they don't offer it in more vehicles.

      • 4 Years Ago
      I have a 2000 Audi S4 bought at 60k miles. Have 110k on it and nothing out of ordinary happening to it for a 10 year old car (aux pump leaking a little, headliner sagging a little).

      It's my first German semi-luxury car and it's great! Had a 2005 Acura CL-Type S and although it looked nicer since it was newer, the S4 holds up very well for it's age.

      Drove it TWICE from FL to Boston during Christmas and other than a 10 year old thermostat failing (engine wouldn't warm up much while up north) it drove fine the whole way. Wouldn't mind doing it again!
      • 4 Years Ago
      yup, those are the reasons you buy a vw
        • 4 Years Ago
        My audi has all of those...
        • 4 Years Ago
        @ KidRed:


        A lot of people are very surprised to see that my '02 has auto up/down windows on all windows(only 2 on my GTI though) when that's a feature that many cars don't offer even at much higher prices, even to this day.

        I also owned an '01 GTI GLX which had auto climate(unusual for the class back then) as well as auto windshield wipers(unavailable on all but luxury brands at the time). It's still a rarity on most cars, but it was on my nearly 10yr old GTI.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I've seen fancy switches/latches fail (Mk IV Golf trunk latch, $600+ to fix because it's welded into the tailgate)
        I've seen fancy in-seat seat belts get jammed and fail (Mk IV Golf Center seat belt, $600+ to fix because it's sewn into the seat)
        I've seen the security system associated with the fancy key fob fail (Mk IV Golf $600+ to fix because it's part of the engine management computer)
        I've seen the fancy soft touch plastics scratch and peel away if you look at them funny (Mk IV Golf)
        I've seen the fancy coil packs for a 115 hp 8-valve engine corrode and fail at 32K miles (Mk IV Golf $600+ because it's an overly expensive fancy Bosche part)

        And I saw several VW dealers fail all over themselves to not offer to do any warranty repairs and basically speed dial their lemon-law defense attorneys when I started describing the problems.

        But most of all, I saw every single person rushing to vote me down while emphatically insisting that _their_ VW which would _never_ have any sorts of problems and I must be a crazy/bitter wretch bent on making people mistrust their precious value-priced luxury cars... come back three years later and admit that their beloved GTI/Passat/Rabbit/Tuareg decided to start costing $2000 between 50K and 100K miles (closer to 50K) and that they really regretted buying a second one.

        That's the problem with value priced luxury. The maintenance and replacement of all the "luxurious" bits cost just as much as on the $45,000 luxury vehicles... and you find where the corners were cut for the "value pricing" right after the warranty and resale values tank.

        But that's okay, as you've never had any problems with yours.

        See yah in three years.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Sadly, I have to agree with epilonious.

        The small plastic pieces that keep my floor mats in place, for example, have broken of. Now I just have regular floor mats with holes in them. Great. That's just one of hundreds of problems I've had.

        I'll never buy a Volkswagen again. Sorry VW. The fun-to-drive factor of my 2005 GLI is not worth the headaches.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @ epilonious:

        A lot of that is solved by simply not going to the dealer. The dreaded timing belt replacement(which some claim cost them upwards of $2,000 cost me $500 with parts(OEM or OEM equiv, it was mixed).

        $300 of that cost was parts. Look around on ECS Tuning, they offer numerous timing belt kit options. http://www.ecstuning.com/Volkswagen-Golf_IV--1.8T/Engine/Timing/Timing_Belt_Kit/

        Dealers will rape you on the cost of service as well as parts and that has nothing to do with VW, they all do it.

        It's just being smart with your money and shopping around.

        • 4 Years Ago

        Are you sure you're old enough to drive, son?
        • 4 Years Ago
        unless those carpet/felt pieces are easy and cheap to replace I would rather not have them. Anyone with children would cringe at the sight of them. My 6 year old stuck gum down in the bin on my car. 130 degree interior and some papers made a royal mess. I can see that on that lining. As for reliable cars, VW has a Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde reputation. My good friend just got rid of their Jetta. It had 3 engines (short blocks) replaced under warranty. The computer was also replaced after the third engine along with a number of sensors. The car was very nice to look at, nice interior, but leaving him and his children on the side of the express way in the dead of winter was unforgiveable.
        • 4 Years Ago
        ^^^ Hey I've done that... I loved my piece of crap GTi.
        • 4 Years Ago
        It's funny, earlier today someone question the CC compared to the Sonata and why the CC was a premium over most cars in it's class. I responded about the details of the interior. Non-VW/Audi owners do not understand the get what you pay for and the detail these companies put into their cars is extremely satisfying.
        • 4 Years Ago
        i've had no issues with my coat holder, felt lined door cubbies, everything else he's mentioned here. you've seen felt lined surfaces fail? Seriously? on an MkV? or MkVI? I'd love to hear about that.

        Technically, that's a different matter, but static elements like coat hooks and felt lining, lmao.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Thats why I love my Dub, 60k miles no issues. At least on my 2007 Wolfsburg.

      What I love:
      - I tap the turn signal and it blinks 3 times
      - The trunk pop
      - 1 touch windows
      - Remote up/down widows with key fob
      - My interior
      - Heated Seats are stupid hot!
      - Heated mirrors and washer nozzles
      - dial for the sunroof so you can get it just right.......

      As far as the window thing, you need to get someone with a VAGCOM to set your car to convenience mode.That way the windows go down and up with just pressing and holding the unlock/lock on the remote key fob. Mine is setup and I am always showing it off. Great when it starts raining and your inside. Or on a hot day. it even closes the sunroof!
        • 4 Years Ago
        lol the dial is something we take for granted. i had a tacoma owning friend get in perplexed at the dial and awestruck at the ability to simply choose where you wanted the roof. little things we take for granted, completely omitted from other ranges. hell like brake override!
      • 4 Years Ago
      Yeah, Love my Mk4 for all the little things VW has added that I only see on more expensive cars. The best is all the hidden storage areas in the trunk. I know on my car I can role down the windows by putting the key in the drivers door and turning right and holding. I seen a flash you can do to the car so you can do it threw the key fob.
      Yeah, people are complaining about VW's on here, and they can be a pain, but when there good there good.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Over 5k miles and the TDI Cup Edition has yet to see the track?
        • 4 Years Ago
        We're working on getting tires. The stock rubber isn't up to the task.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Blame the tires... it's always the tires. ;)
      • 4 Years Ago
      The wife and I are very happy with out 2003 Jetta TDI's. Her's was bought new in Sept 2002 and is a wagon w/auto and 145K miles on the clock. Still averages 39/47mpg city/hwy. Mine was bought Jan 2005, a sedan w/5sp, 150K on the clock and is still ageraging 49/58mpg city/hwy. Both are paid for and we are not in the market for another unless something happens to one of them.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I love my '10 TDI sportwagen and have considered the cup sedan, but it's too low to the ground. I'll probably end up with the 4 door golf TDI next, leaving the wagon for the wife and kids. I drive 85 miles each way to and from work and I'm averaging around 45-50 MPG each trip. In the end, I usually end up with 600 miles per-tank (14.5 gal fill up) because of traffic and the couple-few mountains I have to go over along the way. The best tank I ever had in this car was 820 miles. The worst was just over 450.

      The little things do make a big difference in these cars though. The arm rest with the multiple levels of adjustment height. It also slides in and out for added comfort. The standard Bluetooth audio so you never have to wrestle with cables. Carpeted cargo areas through out. Available pull out drawers for the front seats, etc..

      You end up with a very nice car in this segment for an average price with economy that rivals the top eco-cars in any class.
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