SEL Premium 4dr Sedan (1.4L 4cyl Turbo gas/electric hybrid 7AM)
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 a notch above a base Jetta, almost A3 like. 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! UPDATE March 2016: three years on, and I still love this car. It drives great, build quality is top-notch, and I've yet to hear a OEM audio system as good as this one. Still getting about 44-45 MPG, unless I drive it really hard, when it drops to ~40 UPDATE Mach 2017: Now into the fourth year of ownership, I STILL love this car. No issues with the car whatsoever, still averaging ~45mpg in mixed driving. Such a shame VW elected to stop making these, but obviously not a huge selling vehicle for them. No cheating required to get my excellent mileage.
SEL 4dr Sedan (1.4L 4cyl Turbo gas/electric hybrid 7AM)
I waited a long time to write this review because I wanted it to be good. This is my commuter car and I have put 42k miles on it in a year and a half. Right after warranty expired, things started breaking. You have heard about VW "Electrical Problems", this is TRUE. Do not buy a VW until they get this cleared up. Also sometimes, when it shifts from electric to gas, the entire car shakes and you almost feel like the engine is going to fall out of the car. It's just an average car, fuel mileage for a hybrid is "ok." I've contemplated just asking if I can return the car. For 27k, I really expect a lot more.
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.
4dr Sedan (1.4L 4cyl Turbo gas/electric hybrid 7AM)
The car doesn't make the gas mileage it promises. I've tried everything to make it work. I bought the car for the fuel economy. Now my car has been in the shop for a month (third time I bring in for same problem) due to a jerking feeling that happens randomly as it switches from electric to gas. I've also had issues with the car randomly saying key not in range. It was in the shop at least three times for that. Then I brought it in for the sun roof not closing. I've had many cars with sunroofs and never had to have them greased and the lines blown out. The car is not worth it. Don't do it!! I'm very disappointed and dissatisfied. Not to mention it does not hold its value at all!! I checked it's Kelly blue book value and the car is upside down.
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.