2011 Volkswagen Jetta TDI: Forgot To, And For-got That, Too
August 25, 2011
This daytime reenactment doesn't fully convey the shame and self-loathing I felt when I walked out my front door this morning at 5:30 am to discover that I had somehow managed to leave our 2011 Volkswagen Jetta TDI's headlights on all night. D'oh!
The Jetta's rotary light switch has two positions, "on" and "off"; there's no "auto" setting like the car I drove the previous night. (A useful feature, that.) The act of locking the car must've cut the main lamps, because only the dim front parking lights and the taillights were on this morning.
It was with no small amount of trepidation that I pressed the start button, worried that the few remaining electrons would be insufficient to turn the little diesel over.
I needn't have worried. She cranked right up. Bullet dodged.
Later this morning, finally at my desk, I couldn't find my iPhone. And then I remembered the second thing that I'd forgotten...
I'd left my phone in the Jetta's glove comparment, attached to its short (and mandatory) VW-supplied umbilical.
Aside from this leave-it-behind scenario, I utterly hate this setup. I don't like having the phone entombed where I can't see my maps and traffic data. In a world where Google's phone-based traffic service is free, I see no reason to pay for traffic data on a car's native nav system. Heck, with a smartphone I don't even need the nav system.
Sure, I could insead use Bluetooth Audio for the tunes, but then I wouldn't have the charging function and I'd be forced to peck at the iPhone screen to select music in a manner that's not that dissimilar from texting. The intergrated iPod cord is by far the better way to go, just not THIS cord.
None of the above should be construed as an excuse. I forgot to turn off the headlights. I forgot my iPhone in the glove box. End of story.
Dan Edmunds, Director of Vehicle Testing