New Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen Review

2013 Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen TDI Wagon Exterior

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While the Volkswagen Jetta Sportwagen is a fairly new nameplate, the Jetta itself has been a favorite for decades among consumers looking for German engineering at a budget price. With its upscale cabin and sophisticated ride, the Sportwagen certainly looks and feels like a German luxury car. And, of course, being a wagon, the Sportwagen can carry plenty of stuff. With about 67 cubic feet of maximum cargo capacity, this Jetta is roomier than many compact crossovers.

If it seems as if the current VW Jetta Sportwagen looks more like a Golf than a Jetta, your eyes aren't deceiving you. That's because Volkswagen has redesigned the latest Jetta, while only recently revamping the Sportwagen. That means the Sportwagen remains more closely related to the previous-generation Golf/Jetta. Considering that the latest Jetta has become more mainstream and less sophisticated, we'd say the Sportwagen is the better all-around Jetta.

Current Volkswagen Jetta Sportwagen
The current Volkswagen Jetta Sportwagen is available in S, SE and TDI trim levels. The S and SE models are powered by a 170-horsepower 2.5-liter inline five-cylinder. A five-speed manual is standard with this engine, while a six-speed automatic is optional.

The Jetta TDI features a 2.0-liter turbodiesel engine that utilizes VW's clean diesel technology, making this car compliant with all 50 states' emissions requirements. The diesel produces 140 hp and a healthy 236 pound-feet of torque, and yields up to 41 mpg on the highway. A six-speed manual or VW's DSG dual-clutch automated manual are offered for the TDI.

The Volkswagen Jetta Sportwagen sets itself apart from domestic and Japanese economy sedans by offering a distinctly European interior and feel to the driving experience. In many ways, it's a smart alternative to heavier and less efficient compact crossovers. Not only does the Jetta provide better handling, but its cargo space is generally on par or better. Small wagons are now few and far between, but the excellent Jetta Sportwagen doesn't really leave you longing for different choices.

Read the most recent 2014 Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen review.

If you are looking for older years, visit our used Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen page.


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