2014 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid Sedan Review | Edmunds.com

2014 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid Sedan

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Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 1.4 L Inline 4-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 7-speed Automated Manual
  • Horse Power 170 hp @ 5000 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 42/48 mpg
  • Bluetooth Yes
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats No

Review of the 2014 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid

  • B Edmunds Rating
  • The 2014 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid is a solid choice if you want a hybrid that looks and drives like a normal sedan. Elevated price aside, we're fans.

  • Safety | Rating Details
  • Pros

    Excellent fuel economy; good acceleration for a hybrid; strong brakes; spacious interior; smooth and quiet ride.

  • Cons

    High price; small navigation display; spotty interior quality.

  • What's New for 2014

    The 2014 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid receives VW's Car-Net telematics system.

Full 2014 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid Review

What's New for 2014

The 2014 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid receives VW's Car-Net telematics system.


If you're looking for a hybrid that doesn't drive like one, the 2014 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid makes a compelling bid for your business. Think about the negatives typically associated with hybrids: strange transmissions that never change gears (CVTs), soggy handling and slow acceleration. Now consider the Jetta Hybrid's resume. Its transmission is a crisp-shifting automated manual. It handles securely through turns, and it feels downright quick when you give it some gas. About the only traditional hybrid element here is the impressive EPA rating of 45 mpg in mixed driving.

The Jetta Hybrid may strike you as redundant given the existence of the fuel-sipping Jetta TDI, but here's the reality: Not every American wants to drive a diesel. Also, you could argue that the hybrid is actually a better car. After all, its combined fuel economy outpaces the TDI's by a whopping 11 mpg, and you can fill up its tank with good old gasoline, so there's no need to share a greasy pump with 18-wheelers. Predictably, the Hybrid is also quieter than its grumbly diesel sibling.

Here's the catch, though: The hybrid Volkswagen Jetta is also more expensive than the TDI model, and that brings some other appealing hybrid vehicles into play. The Honda Civic Hybrid is cheaper than this Jetta, as is the best-selling 2014 Toyota Prius. Toyota's unparalleled experience with hybrid powertrains could also add some long-term peace of mind. Another option in the Jetta Hybrid's price range is the larger 2014 Ford Fusion Hybrid, which bested the VW and a few other hybrids on the way to winning our recent hybrid sedan comparison test.

Nonetheless, these models (the Honda and Toyota in particular) still drive like hybrids, and that's where the Jetta Hybrid has an edge. If you're intrigued by hybrid fuel economy but could do without the common side effects, give the 2014 VW Jetta Hybrid a shot.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2014 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid is available in Base, SE, SEL and SEL Premium trim levels.

Available by special order only, the base Jetta Hybrid comes with 15-inch alloy wheels, a rear spoiler, heated mirrors, cruise control, full power accessories, dual-zone automatic climate control, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, height-adjustable front seats, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, leatherette (premium vinyl) upholstery, a 60/40-split-folding rear seat, a trunk pass-through, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity and a six-speaker sound system with CD player and an auxiliary jack.

The SE adds LED taillights, keyless entry/ignition, power-reclining front seats, VW's Car-Net telematics and an upgraded sound system with a touchscreen interface, satellite radio and an iPod interface.

The SEL steps up to 16-inch alloy wheels, a sunroof, heated front seats, a six-way power driver seat, a rearview camera and a navigation system.

The SEL Premium tops the range with 17-inch alloy wheels, adaptive bi-xenon headlights, LED daytime running lights, foglights and an eight-speaker Fender sound system.

Powertrains and Performance

The 2014 VW Jetta Hybrid is powered by a turbocharged 1.4-liter four-cylinder engine that works in tandem with a 20kW electric motor. The team produces a combined 170 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque. Power flows to the front wheels through a seven-speed automated manual transmission: a special hybrid version of VW's DSG transmission with one extra gear.

If you're delicate with the throttle, the electric motor can scoot the Jetta Hybrid along for almost a mile at speeds up to 37 mph, though conditions likely won't allow this in the real world. At the test track, the Jetta Hybrid ran from zero to 60 mph in a swift 7.8 seconds, one of the quickest times in this segment.

According to the EPA, the Jetta Hybrid will return 45 mpg combined (42 mpg city/48 mpg highway), essentially matching the rated fuel economy of the Civic and Fusion hybrids, but still below the Prius. During an extensive Edmunds fuel economy test consisting of city, highway and interstate driving, the Jetta Hybrid averaged 43.0 mpg overall. Although that's a little off the EPA combined number, it should be noted that the VW posted 47.3 mpg during the 100-mile suburban driving portion of the test.


The 2014 VW Jetta Hybrid comes standard with traction and stability control, antilock disc brakes, front side airbags, side curtain airbags and active front head restraints. A rearview camera is included in SEL and SEL Premium models. VW's new Car-Net telematics system, standard from the SE trim on up, includes automatic crash notification, roadside assistance, remote vehicle access, stolen vehicle location and geo-fencing (which allows parents to set boundaries for teenage drivers). A Car-Net smartphone app lets owners control many of these functions on the go.

During Edmunds brake testing, the Jetta Hybrid came to a stop from 60 mph in a commendably short 117 feet, one of the top performances in this class.

In government crash tests, the Jetta Hybrid earned five stars out of five overall, including four stars for front crash protection and five stars for side-impact protection. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the conventional Jetta its best possible rating of "Good" in the moderate-overlap frontal-offset, side-impact and roof strength tests, In the IIHS's small-overlap frontal-offset test, the conventional Jetta posted a "Marginal" rating (second worst of four).

Interior Design and Special Features

While the 2014 Jetta Hybrid has one of the least exciting interiors in its class, some might interpret this as tasteful restraint. Whereas rivals may use various curves, angles and textures to catch your eye, the Jetta just gives you simple, straightforward gauges and a no-nonsense control layout. Some hard, coarse plastic panels are a turn-off for a car at this price, though.

The controls generally feel substantial and well-damped. We also like the touchscreen stereo interface and its redundant dial knob, which is ideal for controlling a portable music player. The associated navigation system, however, is a bit of a letdown due to the small screen and limited amount of display information.

One thing the current Jetta does quite well is carry adults in the backseat, and the Jetta Hybrid can claim the same. In the trunk, however, the battery consumes about 4 additional cubic feet of space versus the regular sedan, cutting the maximum figure down to 11.3 cubic feet. That's still bigger than the trunk in the Honda Civic Hybrid or the larger Hyundai Sonata Hybrid, however.

Driving Impressions

The 2014 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid's turbocharged gas engine is smooth and quiet, a pleasant change from the droning dramatics in some rival hybrids. The seven-speed automated transmission shifts quickly and smoothly, lending an authoritative feel to the car's sprightly acceleration.

While the Jetta Hybrid isn't an overtly sporty sedan, it feels planted and balanced in corners, showing more athleticism than expected for a hybrid car. We're also fond of the brakes, which is rare praise for a hybrid. The pedal has a nice feel to it and the brakes are strong in emergency stops. For the sake of fuel economy, the Jetta Hybrid is tuned to coast when you're off the gas pedal. The upshot is that in hilly areas, you can't simply take your foot off the gas and expect the car to slow down; you'll need the brake pedal, too.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

A new kind of vehicle

by on
Vehicle: 2013 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid

brought my 2009 jetta into the dealer to resolve a problem , and while waiting browsed the show room and met a used dealer jetta hybrid on display , went for a demo drive and bought the demo 2013 jetta hybrid SEL . although the 2009 jetta is a great car to drive with plenty of torque , the hybrid is quieter , smother with a bunch of bells and whistles . and drives like a cloud , compared to the tdi jetta , and gets 49 -50 MPG. average for a month worth of driving averaged 47 MPG. although having to use premium gasoline (that is cheaper than diesel) the MPG is a little better than the TDI . of all the vehicles I have had over the many years the TDI was the most fun to drive. hybrid +

4 of 7 people found this review helpful

First year with the hybrid

by on
Vehicle: 2013 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid

I've driven my 2013 Hybrid Jetta for a full year now and while I like the car it's worth sharing my experience. First, I've had some quality issues that required pretty major dealer service. The AC did not work at all and required 3 days in the dealership to re-program. Next the climate sync and off did not work and required that the climate module be replaced. I had to return to the dealer to have the AC turned on again after the climate control module was replaced. Most recently a vacuum pump failed and the check hybrid and check engine lights went on. I was averaging 42.7 mpg but lately it's down to 37.5. I think the change is due to my reduced efforts at driving economically.

5 of 14 people found this review helpful

Perfect...except "where's the 48mpg"...???

by on
Vehicle: 2013 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid

Our Jetta Hybrid will be a year old next month, my wife's the primary driver and she loves it, but, I LOVE it more, and enjoy driving it so much whenever she "lets me"...!!! don't be fooled by the fact this is a "hybrid", VW has "done it right" with great handling, performance and fuel economy (that cold be BETTER..more details below...) for a car that we are happy to own and have NO regrets in buying. Our 16 yo daughter "can't wait" to get her hands on it when she starts to drive..."in her dreams"....!!!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

Exceeding expectations

by on
Vehicle: 2013 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid

As a current TDI owner I've enjoyed great performance and economy. I was skeptical of the hybrid, but I have been surprised to be getting better than EPA estimates for mpg, usually mid 40s to low 50s. The car does not need to be driven slow, but you need to maximize the time the car is driving under battery power or sailing. The power meter helps a lot with this. Aggressive driving will lower mpg considerably. The road feel is great and the DSG is very smooth. The 1.4L TSI is very torquey and the car feels quick. I have the SEL which is nicely equipped. I think the hybrids compliment the TDIs nicely. The hybrid is ideal for those driving around town and on crowded highways.

12 of 22 people found this review helpful

Pretty much as advertized --

by on
Vehicle: 2013 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid

I'm 3000 miles on the premium model (no xenon fender or camera) but still quite nice. Gets 45 mpg if you drive 60-65 also nice is that in traffic (where can't accelerate too much) you'll still get 40 mpg or so. Drive like a sports car though -- 35ish. But, moreso, I've been driving hybrids since 2003 and love how this car handles, accelerates and has comfortable drive. VW did really well this car. Quiet ride to boot. I know people will say the "diesel" gives you more bang for your buck...BUT DIESEL IS NOT AS GOOD FOR THE ENVIRONMENT AS UNLEADED, even "clean" diesel" -- it's just cleaner than previous diesel. This one gets ZERO emissions about 25% and can be more. Much better epa.gov ratings.

22 of 26 people found this review helpful

Jetta hybrid works for me

by on
Vehicle: 2013 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid

Despite the elevated cost of the SEL Premium version, I needed a commuter car with excellent mpg specs, and being a VW fan, was drawn to the Jetta Hybrid. Previously I'd owned a 2011 GTi, but didn't care for the 28mpg part of ownership (but a blast to drive, for sure). Having driven several Prius vehicles, I learned to dislike the golf-cart like CVT, so the 7 speed DSG of the Jetta Hybrid was a huge plus. I love this car so far, and 46 mpg is my mileage after two tanks of (premium) fuel. Build quality seems a notch above a base Jetta. The Fender audio is as good as anything a manufacturer has ever put into a car, IMHO. Thank you VW for an alternative to TDI!

Talk About The 2014 Jetta Hybrid

Gas Mileage


  • 42
  • cty
  • 48
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs

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