Volkswagen Jetta (2011) 2.0 Highline AT - Performance Review
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Performance Review of Volkswagen Jetta (2011) 2.0 Highline AT
Last Updated at 03:28 pm, May 20, 2013Rating :
The 2.0-litre diesel engine is a hot favorite in the Volkswagen camp; in the Jetta, it gets paddle shifters too! | Photography: Eshan Shetty
We have driven the new Jetta for over four thousand kilometers and that 2.0-litre TDi mill feels as impressive as ever. In fact this 2.0-litre, four-cylinder diesel engine is a hot favorite in the Volkswagen camp – you’ll find it in the Volkswagens, Skodas and even Audis! In the Jetta guise, it produces 140 PS of power and 320 Nm or torque. Drive the Jetta around for a few hundred kilometers and you’ll know why this engine is a hot favorite.
But what’s more exciting than the engine itself, are those little paddles behind the steering wheel! They aren’t a first in this class, but thankfully they aren’t mated to any sluggish gearbox either – like you get in the Honda City. Instead, what you get here is a dual-clutch transmission – or DSG (Dual Shift Gearbox) in Volkswagen speak. So what you get is a gearbox that makes for quick and precise shifts. What’s even more important is that it is right at your fingertips, so you don’t have to get your hand off the steering wheel when you are hurtling down twisties or indulging in some performance driving. Once you are done having your set of fun, you can simply slot the shifter back into drive mode and enjoy the smooth shifts of the Jetta’s automatic transmission. Downshifts in auto-mode, do take a tad longer though as compared to the manual mode.
The Jetta’s handling is superb and is in a completely different league as compared to the Civic or the Corolla. There is very little body roll and the car feels absolutely planted even when tackling corners at a high speed. Furthermore, the rubber is wide and sticky and the NVH, top notch; so even at triple digits speeds, there is considerably low amount of road and tyre noise creeping into the cabin. The engine is slightly noisy though and makes the type of fuel it burns, evident. For now, the Jetta's tail only wears the TDI badge, but a TSI badge will be available soon when the 1.8-litre stonker from the Laura RS joins the Jetta family.
The new Jetta has matured overall as compared to its earlier avatar. It appears to be smarter, feels more luxurious and is fun to drive. While the entire package is completely worth the money it demands, the new Jetta still ends up looking like the protective elder sibling of the Vento - and that could act like a double-edged sword for Volkswagen.
First Published on 02:44 pm, December 02, 2011