By now I've come to the conclusion that the all new Volkswagen Jetta is a great car to drive. You certainly wouldn't get tired of a long commute or a fun, winding Sunday adventure. Despite what you may want to believe about this car, it has excellent handling, absorbs bumps superbly and exhibits almost zero road noise.
Now you're thinking to yourself "Dave really likes this car? No way. There has to be a catch?"Jetta Engine AG" src="http://www.weblogsinc.com/common/images/7302975875353742.JPG?0.4640692625213185" align="top" border="1" height="278" hspace="0" vspace="4" width="425" />
Well there are a few minor things that bug me about the Jetta. Number one is the schizophrenic accelerator. It has a hairpin feel when taking off from stops. It is very unusual for me to jerk passengers in an automatic transmission, yet it is a constant in the Jetta. Make all the ?Dave?s a bad driver? jokes you want, it is indeed the accelerator?s fault, this time.
That leaves the transmission as a whole a bit wanting. At high speeds, when accelerating to pass or merge onto the highway, the power comes in single, lump sums instead of gradually. Its the kind of thing that would bother someone like me over time, but a casual driver would probably not notice as much. The power itself is certainly there even with the seemingly low 150 horsepower figure. I was cruising at well over 70 mph on the highway and feeling very stable and controlled.
With the tiptronic shifter launching into high-powered starts is a blast (when you?re expecting to lurch backwards into your seat). The seating position is very comfortable and allows for the very tall and the vertically challenged to enjoy long drives. The gauges are clear and easy to read but the redline on the tach is almost invisible. I?ve caught myself looking a split second longer than I?m used to at that dial.
Tomorrow we?ll wrap everything up as the new VW?I mean Audi A4 arrives and the Jetta leaves.