The car is ideal in concept and I enjoyed it very much in the beginning - especially the 6 speed and low end torque. But the initial quality was poor. Problems included the navigation system, ABS, and exhaust system. Then the fuel pump failed at 27k miles. Very, very disappointed. I have 2 Toyota's with 255k miles combined and I've never thought about the fuel system failing => Much less to the tune of $10k. VW is covering under warranty, but I would consider the quality very much below average.
Bluetooth, Nav and sunroof
Make an engine that lasts longer than 27k miles and fix initial quality issues.
The '09 TDI was in many ways the best car I'd owned in 20+ years. Safe, comfortable, good handling in snow, and amazing MPG (44 hwy, 37 city over 20K miles). However, the TDI has a faulty high pressure fuel pump design and complete failures are showing up all over the US due to the poor quality of US diesel compared to Europe. Bottom line? at 21K my pump failed and shot metal particles through the entire fuel system. It was all replaced (tank to injectors) at a cost of about $10K. This was covered by warranty and the dealer was great-- but there is nothing to prevent it from happening again, out of warranty. And who needs are car that may self-destruct without warning at any time? Stay away.
6M transmission, handling, fuel economy
Do not buy a TDI until VW has a proven fix for the failing high pressure fuel pumps-- this applies to all models, all years 2009-
Bought this car after it was made legal by Maine EPA. Hands down the best car for the money. Tried out the Prius but my soul would not let me buy such a lifeless piece of plastic. Car handles and drives great. Braking is also very responsive ( sorry Prius owners) My neighbors were blown away when they found out it was a diesel. Car has tons of room. I average 41 and if I drive like a responsible adult I can get high 40's on the highway. Nice thing is I don't have to and I still get better mileage then 99% of cars on the road. Features are adequate for the price. For those looking to buy new, I just saw the TDI CUP version and it is off the charts. Would highly recommend buying a TDI
MPG! Roomy interior. Smooth manual shifting. Great power and torque
Better feature like power seats and real leather and fog lights. Make Navi better and less expensive. Also it is time to import the TDI Tiggy!!!
Traded my '06 Volvo S60 in June '09 for the Jetta (due to some quality issues) and couldn't be happier with the purchase. I drive ~350 miles/week, mix of highway and city, and average appr 41 mpg w/ a fairly heavy foot. My best is 47.5 on a trip from Bham to Nashville. The TDI's torque is impressive, and the turbo spool/blowoff sounds cool too! The interior is well built (even though I had an annoying rattle in the rear C- pillar, dealership fixed on 20k maint. visit). I appreciate the modest but functional interior layout. Even the sunroof is well designed! The gearbox shifts well and engages fluidly. My only beef w/ the car is the lack of option for cloth seats and the spongy brakes.
Fuel economy (main motivation for purch), surprising performance, interior material quality, dash layout, very supportive seats (almost thought they were too small at first, but I love them now). Drives just as well at 100mph as it does at 50. Huge trunk. Did I mention fuel economy?
Perhaps a reconsideration of speaker placement is in order - the sound comes all from beneath you. Needs better OEM brakes. I'd prefer cloth seats. Perhaps an option for a cabin heater for the winter, as the motor takes a while to come to temp. Overall, I'd highly recommend this car to anyone.