2015 Volkswagen Jetta Review
Edmunds' Expert Review
- Spacious interior and trunk
- good fuel economy and performance from turbocharged engines and available Jetta Hybrid.
- Weak, inefficient base engine
- high price of hybrid and diesel-powered TDI
- middling handling and steering capabilities
- mediocre touchscreen displays.
Most helpful consumer reviews
SE 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6A)
I swore I'd never buy one. Too expensive, too unreliable. Well, in a pinch, a tornado red SE Jetta jumped out at me at the dealer on an evening I had gone to see a different car. Over the last 3 months and 6,000 miles I've had a mostly positive experience. This is a compact sedan with a solid build quality feel. The interior and trunk room, along with the ride, are more like a midsize sedan, but the parking and handling are more like a compact. VW found a great balance here. It's really the perfect size car. Few cars find this balance, except maybe Dodge Avenger/Chrysler 200, and I wasn't about to buy one of those! If you have a turbo you'll also see why I entitled the review, "The Red Rocket." It drives like a V6 (at minimum) and still returns 40 MPG. Visibility is great. Car is great looking, with classic, timeless VW looks inside and out. Seats are firm but comfortable, and the heated seats rock. The seat bottom and back both heat, not just the bottom like a lot of cars. I'm not without complaints, though. The worst so far is maintenance costs. Even with no true "problems," every ounce of preventative maintenance will cost more on this car because of special oil, filters, etc. - many of which are proprietary and cannot be obtained other than from VW. I do hear some squeaks and rattles from time to time. I also have issues with my stereo, the AUX will randomly shut off and I have to go in and turn it back on. This happens about once a week. Not a huge problem, but an annoyance. Display between the instrument panel gauges is hard to navigate without using the manual. Dashboard and interior door plastic reminds you that it's an economy class car also. It's more like what you'd expect in a low-end Chevrolet than anything with a German nameplate. Overall, this has surprised me and has been a great commuter car with the comfort and fuel economy. The powertrain is also amazing. At this point, longevity and reliability will be the determining factors as to whether this will go down as a great or a lousy car for me. Crossing my fingers for the best, hoping for many happy years, but if it turns into a stereotypical European money pit, it's back to Japanese cars for me!
SE PZEV 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6A)
Overall I love this car. The new 1.8t is very quick and provides outstanding fuel economy. The ride and handling are considerably better than the Kia I traded it in for it. Where it comes up short are the cheap looking and horribly uncomfortable car seats that come standard on the 15 SE. I found a gel pad that pretty much takes care of the problem. I guess it was cost saving reasons that caused VW to go away from the nicer leatherette seats that previously came on the car but it's a real turn off.
S 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 6A)
I purchased a 2015 Jetta SE, new, in October of 2015. As soon as the weather was warm enough for me to need my A/C, I noticed that every time I would travel long distance on the interstate, my A/C would stop blowing cold air. At one point, I pulled over and had someone look under the hood only to see the A/C components were frozen. Once I would let them thaw out, it would blow cold again for a few minutes, until it would freeze up again. I brought it in to the Lafayette LA dealership three times for the same issue only for them to tell me that they....CHECKED AND FOUND COMPRESSOR PRESSURE FLUCTUATING ON LOW SIDE AND COMPRESSOR PUMPED DOWN TO 20 LOW SIDE COMPRESSOR IS ACTUALLY COOLING TO WELL CAUSING FREEZE UP . REPLACED THE AC COMPRESSOR AFTER CONSULTING TECH 20. RECHARGED AND RECHECKED ALL IS OK NOW. It still continues to do the same thing, and now they are telling me that I am not running my A/C correctly and that it "states in the manual" how to properly use the A/C. I can also feel air coming out of the area where my radio and temperature controls are located. I've never needed a manual to know how to use my A/C, Ive always just used it and I have never had this problem in any other vehicle that I have owned. I also have had to add anti freeze to my car twice since I have purchased my Jetta, a year and a half ago. I was told that they checked it and there was no leak, but that it was normal for that to happen sometimes.....!!! Now I am having issues with my seat belt alert going off while I am wearing my seat belt, and since my last scheduled maintenance, my car sometimes acts like it doesn't want to start, and my sunroof doesn't always close the first time that I try to close it. VW has yet to find anything wrong with any issues that I have had with my car, and their service manager was not at all pleasant to deal with.
SE 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 5M)
My wife was in need of a car, and we had 7 days to car shop. She insisted on a manual transmission. We looked at the Accord Sport (excellent car, a bit to big for her taste), Mazda 3 with the base engine (anemic/cheap) and a Subaru WRX (amazing). We already have a BRZ, so we decided the extra expense of the WRX was unnecessary. There were only two 1.8TSI 5 speed cars in Houston at the time, and the first one I test drove was already purchased when I came back a second time to buy. The second test drive sold me on the car. The engine has a beefy flat torque curve, and it's probably underrated. It can produce "neck snapping" torque that can move the car to where you want it. The car does not come with a TC off button. Surprisingly, with aggressive driving in low speed sharp turns, the traction control allows for an appropriate amount of wheel spin to get you around quickly, and the corrections don't slow you down too much. Its rare that you find 15" wheels on a new car, and I greatly appreciate them. They do well on rough roads, and overall comfort. The 15" wheels also fit more than adequate brakes. Up there with the brilliant engine is a phenomenal suspension. There is very little slop in the suspension, and it is tuned well. It's extremely comfortable and can handle rough terrain like a champ. Another thing it does well is maintain stability through high speed corners. It hunkers down and there is a good amount of grip, and it can be driven smoothly at a nice pace. Compared to Japanese/Korean luxury cars I have recently driven, I prefer the Jetta's suspension, and for that matter, the over all comfort. The cabin is vault like. The only thing lacking in this base model is the front seats. I find there is not enough lumbar support, and sometimes when I'm moving about, the construction of the seats feels cheap. On the positive side, the fabric is durable and the heaters work well. The clutch on this car is pretty light, and I'm not sure if its a VW thing, but it feels weak. It doesn't grab as well as the sports cars I have driven. It has hill start assist which is helpful, but on a big hill, I find myself using twice as much clutch as I need to use in my BRZ. The gear shift has a vague feeling to it, but once you hit gear, there is a bit of a satisfying engagement. I have probably shifted into 3rd instead of 1st about 5 times over the past two years, and stalled, easy to do with the "light" clutch. The overall value is questionable. I think the trade in value is around $12,000, and I paid $18,000 OTD interest free. Still, at that price, I don't think the power, and overall quality feel of this car can be matched. Not considering the new Civic, which was not available at the time of purchase. But with max torque across the board, this sleeper is a blast to drive, and you can surprise some big bad wolves for a 1/2 a second. This is a sub 7 second 0-60 vehicle. I'm hoping to keep this for 100,000 miles or more, but I will probably tire of the manual transmission in traffic. We have achieved 43 mpg on a tank of gas on the highways traveling 75 mph+ (wife was driving). In town I believe it gets somewhere above 30 mpg. With just me city driving on a tank, I returned 27 mpg, but I stay in the boost. It's addicting.