2013 Volkswagen Jetta GLI Sedan Autobahn 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6AM)
My previous cars were WRX STI 2012, WRX 2011, Toyota Matrix 2006, Honda Civic Si 1998 with a couple Trucks thrown in. The GLI has by far been the best car I've owned. Going on 36K miles right now it has been reliable, comfortable, and fun. Coming from the Subaru WRX/STI world I obviously wanted a car with some pep, but mainly was looking for a car that didn't beat the daylights out of me driving around town. Bingo! To me, the performance is very similar to the standard WRX but the ride is infinitely better than both the WRX and STI. The cabin is nice with ample room. Trunk is out of this world. Stock Dunlop tires were garbage. Swapped with Bridgestone Potenza and it's night and day.
The ride and performance are great. DSG works exceptionally well. Noise levels inside the cabin are fantastic. Trunk space is amazing.
2013 Volkswagen Jetta GLI Sedan Autobahn PZEV 4dr Sedan w/Navigation, Prod. End 5/13 (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6AM)
I've really enjoyed this car for the last 2 years. I commute roughly 75 miles round trip for work, and almost have 30k miles on my car already. I've had no mechanical issues, but a bad door latch was replaced under warranty on the driver door at about 25k. I average about 31-32.5 mpg on a per tank basis depending on driving conditions for the week. The cold winters here in central NY are what cause the lower mpg numbers. I have averaged up to 35 or slightly better mpg on pure highway driving in good weather. City driving average mpg is usually around 27-28 mpg. Overall I'm pleased after almost 2 years of driving.
Excellent sound system for a $30k car. A comfortable car for a long work commute. A very fun car to drive when feeling spirited. Great passing power on the highway. A great sleeper car for those that want a fun sport sedan that doesn't look like a boy racer.
The stock Dunlop tires that come on the car leave some desire with regards to performance. A summer performance tire would be a better choice instead of all season as the car would never do well without winter tires where I live. The brakes could be a little bigger too. It's not that they don't do well, but a little more stopping power would just be better.
2013 Volkswagen Jetta GLI Sedan PZEV 4dr Sedan w/Prod. End 5/13 (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6AM)
I have had GTI (2000) and Passat (2001). This is my 3rd VW, and first one made in Mexico. This car has a lot of room. Trunk is huge. Engine has good power. DSG is love/hate. If you don't drive in commute traffic, you will love it. If you have a lot of stop/go, then DSG sucks. I manage to get 25mpg.
It is not good for commute use, I sold it after 20 months with 19K.
2013 Volkswagen Jetta GLI Sedan Autobahn PZEV 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6M)
I have no idea what car the people at Edmunds were driving, but they are either insane or on the take. I have had my GLI for about 30 months, and I absolutely love it, and my only complaints are about some missing features (which are on the new cars, except for rain sensing wipers).
Edmunds suggests that you consider other cars. Really? What, pray tell, can you buy LOADED for under 30K, that feels like a tight German sedan with a MANUAL tranny? The answer is NOTHING.
For perspective, here are the cars in my past 1985 GTI, 1990 Corrado, BMW 330i, 2007 Audi A3, 1994 Porsche 911 Carrera and a sprinkling of SUV's.
I sold my 911 because, frankly, the Audi was just more fun to drive and less
stressful. (yes, I know, not nearly as pretty). The GLI has the SAME engine, and and SAME gearbox, and feels pretty much the same, EXCEPT that it makes wonderful noises. It sounds so cool when you floor it.
It may not be as blindingly fast as some of the other cars competing with it, but the power band is so perfectly positioned that the car always responds instantly. Freeway ramps? Forget it - the car is on fire whenever you need it to be. It handles like a champ and feels NOTHING like the lower-trim Jetta which has a completely different rear end. Is it worth the extra money? Yes, its a completely and totally different car, and I have not even driven a new one with the extra ten horses.
My only complaints about the car is that I wish that it came in AWD - but if they did that, there would be no reason to ever buy an A4.
And on top of everything else, since I have bought this car I have seen FOUR of them. (I live in the most populous state in Union - NJ). This is a huge sleeper of a car, and Edmunds is dead wrong. Its practical, handles amazingly well, is a steal at 29K, has tons of space, , and to top it off its very rare. There are cars that do things better as another reviewer said, but all together, this car has NO competition. There is no other car to consider if you are looking at this. There is nothing that competes with it, if you want a german car with a manual.
2013 Volkswagen Jetta GLI Sedan 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6M)
Hard to find a manual transmission in a practical, affordable and sporty car these days. After 12k miles I'm still having a great time driving it, lots of fun to step on the gas and take it through the mtns. Actually a pretty big car inside and the trunk is huge. Not the fastest out there but for the price it can't be beat. Only been in for included scheduled maintenance, no squeaks or rattles and nothing annoying me yet. Seats are very comfortable even driving 800 miles in one day. Looks more grown up than most similar cars (civic si, focus st, mazdaspeed3) and flies under the radar for the most part. Torque really pulls you in second gear, thanks to vw for making an audi a4 I can afford!
Six speed manual, turbo motor, seats that hug you, flat bottom leather steering wheel, bluetooth streaming, alloy wheels and red brake calipers, up to 33 mpg highway and mid twenties in town
When I go to rest my elbow on the door arm rest it's a little farther away that I would prefer, same goes for center arm rest to a certain degree. I'm pretty thin so I would imagine it's not a problem for everyone. Cruise control is a little different but works ok.