2008 Volkswagen Jetta Sedan Review | Edmunds.com

2008 Volkswagen Jetta Sedan

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Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) is a category of used car. Often late-model vehicles, they have been inspected, refurbished, if necessary, and are under warranty by the manufacturer.
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Volkswagen Jetta Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 2.0 L Inline 4-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 6-speed Automated Manual
  • Horse Power 200 hp @ 5100 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 22/29 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2008 Volkswagen Jetta

  • With its polished interior and comfortable ride, the 2008 Volkswagen Jetta is one of the more refined players in its class, and is the only choice to consider if you're in search of a small sedan that delivers European elegance at a very reasonable price.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Pleasant ride, high-end interior materials, long list of safety features, meticulous build quality.

  • Cons

    Dull exterior styling contradicts nameplate's youthful image, unspectacular fuel economy.

  • What's New for 2008

    The 2008 Volkswagen Jetta sees a few changes. Most notably, the sedan gets a bump up in power, thanks to a revised 2.5-liter standard engine good for 170 horsepower and 177 pound-feet of torque. Trim levels get new names: S, SE and SEL. The 2.0T engine is available only on the newly revised limited-edition Wolfsburg Edition model and the Volkswagen GLI. (Volkswagen has dropped the "Jetta" name in a move to make the GLI similar to the GTI. The GLI is reviewed separately.) A power two-way recline feature for the driver seat is now standard across all trims.

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Gas Mileage

EPA-Rated MPG

  • 22
  • cty
/
  • 29
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs
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What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews



Not a solid car

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Volkswagen Jetta Wolfsburg Edition PZEV 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6AM)

Bought this vehicle in hopes for its reliability and gas mileage. This car not only disappointed, but I asked Burnsville Volkswagon to buy it back. It had clutch problems right from the word go. It was in the shop more than it was at home. I almost forgot the color of our car. My wife and I live in MN and traded in her jeep for what we thought was to be a gas improvement since we had two four-wheel drives at home. I would not recommend a jetta to anyone. I put on Bridgestone Blizzack tires to try to improve the terrible winter performance to no avail. You would think a car from Germany could handle some snow. The traction control system is a joke and noise maker. Terrible vehicle.....




Still unsure

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Volkswagen Jetta Wolfsburg Edition PZEV 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6AM)

The guy who said "love it, hate it" had it right. Love the car, but at 35,000 miles, I've had a LOT of costly warranty work on the transmission and issues with oil consumption that the service writers refuse to talk to me about. Its suspicious but apparently a common problem- Google it. The trans is going to go out again and already has signs of wear a tear.




Worst car i've ever owned

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Volkswagen Jetta Wolfsburg Edition PZEV 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6AM)

This has to be the worst car I've ever owned, it makes my 1999 Dodge Neon look good. I now have 14k on this car, at 4k I started having problems with the DSG Transmission banging into gears and slipping. After several repair attempts including replace a $3k Mechatronics unit, the car is back in the shop! This time been there 4 days and they don't know whats wrong with it but it still keep banging into gears progressively getting worse. Trim pieces in the interior randomly fall off and heater mirror cracked.




Best car i"ve driven in

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Volkswagen Jetta Wolfsburg Edition PZEV 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6AM)

The car's interior design is one of the best when it comes to a sedan of its class. The vehicle is very well detailed, the mileage per gallon is rock solid 25 in city and 30 in highway. Comfort on top of comfort, beautiful leather seats, and all except for the driver seat fold down to give an spacious way to carry your personal stuff. The most beautiful in handling and the acceleration is awesome when in an emergency.




Very pleased

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Volkswagen Jetta Wolfsburg Edition PZEV 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6AM)

My first VW, the 2.0T Wolfsburg is comfortable and well crafted, I feel like I'm driving something costing $10k more. A very solid car, the suspension and steering are excellent. The engine delivers a satisfying rush of acceleration when you want it. DSG transmission's Sport mode changes the car from a sedate cruiser to a growling animal - lots of smiles. Trunk is huge, with fold down seats can carry lots of cargo. So far 9K miles, no troubles. Very happy all around.




Wolfsburg edition = great value

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Volkswagen Jetta Wolfsburg Edition PZEV 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6AM)

For the price of a loaded Civic, purchased a loaded Wolfsburg with a far more sophisticated and powerful drivetrain (engine & transmission). The turbo 4cyl and DSG six speed transmission are the same used in the Audi A3, TT, and A4, as well as the VW GTI and GLI.



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Full 2008 Volkswagen Jetta Review

What's New for 2008

The 2008 Volkswagen Jetta sees a few changes. Most notably, the sedan gets a bump up in power, thanks to a revised 2.5-liter standard engine good for 170 horsepower and 177 pound-feet of torque. Trim levels get new names: S, SE and SEL. The 2.0T engine is available only on the newly revised limited-edition Wolfsburg Edition model and the Volkswagen GLI. (Volkswagen has dropped the "Jetta" name in a move to make the GLI similar to the GTI. The GLI is reviewed separately.) A power two-way recline feature for the driver seat is now standard across all trims.

Introduction

"Upscale economy car" sounds like an oxymoron, but it's a feat Volkswagen has been managing to pull off for years. The proof is in its much-loved Jetta -- a small sedan that offers a tremendous amount of polish, all for a sub-$20,000 starting price.

With unassuming stealth, the 2008 Volkswagen Jetta sneaks up and surprises shoppers by giving them more than they'd likely expect from a car in this segment. Styling cues reflect discreet European elegance; the sedan's handsome cabin comes decked with rich materials and exceptional fit and finish. Road manners are pleasantly precise, and the VW Jetta also offers a bevy of standard safety features.

In past incarnations, the Jetta's Achilles' heel was its poor reliability; this issue was largely addressed with the 2005 redesign. Unfortunately, the redesign also revamped the angular, character-filled appearance of the previous-generation Jetta, leaving this model with a tame exterior at odds with the youthful image Volkswagen so clearly wishes to cultivate for the sedan. Another shortcoming concerns fuel economy. The car's mediocre mileage will likely prove disappointing for shoppers with frugality on the mind.

The 2008 VW Jetta isn't short on appeal, but there are other economy cars that merit a look. The Mazda 3 will give you a more engaging driving experience, and the Honda Civic's wide range of engines offer greater opportunity for fuel economy. But none in this segment can touch the Jetta when it comes to sheer refinement. If this trait matters to you, put the Volkswagen Jetta at the top of your shopping list.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

2008 Volkswagen Jetta buyers get to choose among three trim levels: S, SE and SEL. The base S comes standard with 16-inch steel wheels, air-conditioning, cruise control, full power accessories, heated side mirrors, a 60/40-split rear seat, keyless entry and an eight-speaker CD/MP3 stereo with an auxiliary input jack. The SE adds 16-inch alloys, a sunroof, a 10-speaker stereo with a six-disc CD changer, satellite radio, heated front seats, a fold-flat front passenger seat, a center armrest and pass-through for the folding rear seat, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shifter, and leatherette upholstery. The revamped Wolfsburg Edition features the more powerful 2.0-liter turbocharged engine as well as 17-inch alloy wheels and exclusive badging. Step up to the SEL and you get 17-inch alloys, a multifunction trip computer, a premium sound system and auxiliary steering-wheel-mounted audio controls.

Powertrains and Performance

S, SE and SEL models come with a 2.5-liter inline five-cylinder engine good for 170 hp and 177 lb-ft of torque. The Wolfsburg Edition is equipped with a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine that puts out 200 hp and 207 lb-ft of torque. Both S and SE Jettas offer a standard five-speed manual transmission or an optional six-speed automatic, while the Wolfsburg Edition boasts a standard six-speed manual. VW's slick six-speed DSG sequential-shift transmission -- which can be shifted manually or placed in auto mode -- is available as an option on the Wolfsburg Edition only. With SEL Jettas, only the six-speed automatic is offered. All Jettas are front-wheel drive.

Jettas sold in California-emissions states have reduced tailpipe emissions and receive a squeaky-clean PZEV rating. No matter the model, however, fuel economy is a bit below average for a compact car. Revised EPA ratings for both manual and automatic models stand at 21 mpg city/29 mpg highway with the 2.5-liter engine. The Wolfsburg Edition's 2.0-liter engine achieves the same numbers when paired with the manual transmission, while DSG-equipped Wolfsburgs manage a marginally better 22 mpg in the city.

Safety

Four-wheel antilock disc brakes, seat-mounted side airbags for front occupants and full-length head curtain airbags are standard across the line. Stability control is optional on the Jetta S, but standard on the other two models. Seat-mounted side airbags for rear passengers are optional. In National Highway Traffic Safety Administration crash tests, the 2008 Volkswagen Jetta received four out of five stars for protection of front seat occupants in head-on collisions and five stars for front- and rear-occupant protection in side impacts. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gives the Jetta a top score of "Good" in its frontal-offset and side-impact crash tests.

Interior Design and Special Features

The Volkswagen Jetta's cabin is loaded with high-quality materials and put together with care. Even the base model has high-end flair, with comfortable seating and elegant trim. A tall roof line lends a sense of spaciousness to the front seats. Headroom is a little tight in the rear, but there's ample legroom for adults. Trunk capacity measures an impressive 16 cubic feet.

Driving Impressions

On the road, the 2008 Volkswagen Jetta manages to provide both comfortable ride quality and agile handling. Like its more expensive German counterparts, the sedan offers a rock-solid feel and a quiet ride. There's adequate power on tap to handle most situations; the Jetta's revised base engine is a welcome addition, as it endows the car with a bit more pep than was offered by last year's model. For maximum acceleration, however, you'll want to check out either the turbocharged Wolfsburg Edition or the identically powered Volkswagen GLI.

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Talk About The 2008 Jetta

2008 Volkswagen Jetta Discussions See all Started By

cajphoto1
cajphoto1
08-29-2013
I have a 2008 Jetta Wolfsburg 2.0 Turbo Black that I purchased in June 2013 with 75k miles. So far the car runs very well and I have only had to change the rear brakes. Front brakes are at 75%. I s...


hills2
hills2
02-19-2010
I have a 2008 Jetta that just stops moving. You shift into gear and it will not move. Turn it off for a minute and it will go for a short distance. All the various gears (F, R, etc) on the dash are...


roughrider1
roughrider1
12-30-2007
Anyone having problems with this one yet! I am considering buying one but am waiting to see how many problems arise!...



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