The 6 speed auto transmission is one of the most unresponsive that I have ever driven. The engine is underpowered.
Throttle response is not smooth. Initially the car does nothing then surges. The transmission is too reluctant to downshift making for a frustrating drive. The transmission downshifts much too slowly. Mash the throttle and I sometimes forget that I've done it as the seconds count down (2-3 seconds). That can be dangerous is you try to jump lanes.
Interior feels unusually cheap for a VW. No cup holders in the rear. No cruise control. Rear view mirror can obstruct.
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!
Our beautiful blue Jetta has 31000 miles on it. The whole time we have owned it, we've had only one recall, and it was fixed promptly. We had the light switch in the trunk go out and Fowler VW fixed it within 2 hours. This car rides so smooth on the freeway with no engine noise coming into the cab. As a matter of fact, we were going up Raton pass to Denver last year and didn't even realize we were doing 125 mph. Still no engine or road noise inside. The one thing in this car that sold the car was the lumbar support. The car was for my wife so she had to be satisfied. We drove the Jetta, a Corrolla, a Sonata and a Mini. The only requirement I had was 4 doors. The only thing I would say that needs to be changed on the VW's made in Mexico is the turn signals in back. This is supposed to be a world-class car. The turn signals should be amber as they are when made in Germany. Mexican VW's have red turn signals. As of Sept., 2016, there are STILL no problems with our Jetta. I have never been more pleased with a car that I have purchased new. When I go to buy another car, I may try to find another 2013 Jetta because I like the 5-cylinder engine.
I bought my 2013 Jetta 2.5 SE with 4,000 miles on it four months ago and it now has 15,000 miles.
I work as an outside salesperson and was looking for a car that would get great gas mileage and still have some style.
I did not have a Jetta in mind, but the mileage and price were both right, so I test drove it and to my surprise liked it a lot despite it being fairly vanilla on the style front.
After four months, this car represents who I am very well, a business man.
The looks are nice and clean.
Not too boring, but not extroverted.
The ride is generally compliant, quite nice on the interstate but very firm on rough pavement.
Impressed with the highway mileage which has been 37 mpg.
I've only had my 2013 Jetta SEL for two months, but it's been pretty great so far.
I like that it's got a sporty look inside and out, and I like the leather interior.
The acceleration is pretty good for 170HP and the ride is smooth overall.
My main complaints are some cheap aspects of the interior - for the price I paid and having the premium trim line, I can't believe it doesn't have power seat adjustment.
Also, to tilt the chair back, you have to pump this plastic pedal up and down (tacky). Also, even when you move the front seats all the way back, there isn't enough leg room for tall people over 6 feet.
Not much head room for tall people either.
Could have designed that better!