The Road Ahead : 01-Aug-2011
WWW.ROADAHEAD.COM.AU THE ROAD AHEAD AUG/SEP 2011 62 vw jetta, 2006-2009 THERE'S A NEW generation Jetta nearly here. But the Jetta nameplate arrived in our market in early 2006. It was VW's new mid-size sedan based on Golf V, quickly leading to the now clichéd description of Jetta as nothing more than "a Golf with a boot". Jetta replaced the earlier and unloved Bora. Sharing the Golf's essential genetic data has been a strength for the more conservatively styled Jetta, with performance, road manners and safety all beneficiaries. All Jetta were well endowed with safety features including six airbags, anti-lock brakes and stability control. Climate control, alloys, CD, rain-sensing wipers, rear park-sensors and full- size spare were amongst the standard equipment inventory. The model range was defined by which of the three direct injection, 2.0-litre, four-cylinder engines was chosen. Entry level was the 110 kW FSI petrol, followed by the TDi turbo-diesel, while the 147 kW turbo FSI petrol, as used in the feisty Golf GTi, catered to those after maximum performance. Entry models get a manual or auto gearbox, the diesel a manual or optional DSG, while the turbo-petrol comes standard with the DSG. All boxes have six ratios. It's the NEED HELP? RACQ CAN HELP WITH CAR LOANS (CALL 1300 361 316), VEHICLE INSPECTIONS (CALL 13 1905) AND INSURANCE (CALL 13 1905). REVIEW JOHN EWING MOTORING USED CAR REVIEW diesel that's most noteworthy for its gutsy performance with excellent fuel economy. Drivers will delight in Jetta's nimble handling, faithful steering and good grip. A classy well-laid out interior, comfortable seating and a cavernous boot find favour too. Likely to have been owned by more conservative types, well cared for used examples shouldn't be too elusive. Standard of finish is good, though, owner reports suggest a variable record for reliability. Brake pad and disc wear isn't uncommon and diesel cam belts require changing at 110,000 km or four years to avoid major damage. Engine oil use up to 1 litre/1000 km is considered acceptable by VW. Check for faulty power window operation -- a wiring harness repair may be needed. Operation of DSG gearboxes needs careful checking as repairs could prove costly. UNDER THE PUMP Jetta's official combined fuel consumption is between 8.0 litres and 8.6 litres (98 RON, petrol models) and 5.8 litres and 6.2 litres (diesel models) every 100 km, depending on model. PRICE RANGE From $16,500 to $28,400, depending on year and model. COMPETITIORS MAZDA6, 2006-2009 Excellent and deservedly popular. Sedan, hatch and wagon body styles. 2.3-litre petrol engine, replaced by higher output and smoother 2.5-litre early 2008 along with other model upgrades. Turbo-diesel option, manual only, no sedan. Responsive handling. Fuel consumption above class average. HONDA ACCORD EURO 2.4, 2006-2009 Another classy mid-size sedan for discerning drivers. Quality build, fine chassis dynamics and steering, supple ride. Powerful 2.4-litre engine, no diesel option, premium fuel consumption higher than class average. FORD MA MONDEO, 2007-2009 Sedans and hatchbacks. Choice of 2.3-litre petrol or 2.0-litre turbo-diesel both with six-speed auto or more expensive, sportier XR5 5-cyl turbo 2.5-litre petrol. Belgian built, Euro feel, good safety, interior and boot space to il l rival large cars.