This is a big car for its class but needs the 2.5 litre to make it work. The 5 speed manual transmission seems too tall in an attempt to gain fuel mileage. An extra gear in the manual gear box is needed to bring some life to it. The space is off the charts compared to any competitor which is a big asset when you have a family to fit in the back seat and luggage in the trunk. The Civic and Elantra might win the "fun" category but the space, quiet ride and solid road performance in weather trump the fun factor for me. It is not a TDI (my previous car was a '05 Jetta TDI before the moose destroyed it) and if you can afford it, go with the TDI. The TDI is a Santa bag of fun with crazy torque!
Quiet ride and tons of space. "Heavy", reassuring feeling on the road especially in weather.
Manual shift needs another gear. Bring back the hood struts! Get rid of the spring loaded gas filler cap, freezes up in winter. Some more lumbar support, the old TDI seats were more comfortable than the current version.
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