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Old 01-11-2009, 10:17 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Tell me about the Volkswagen Jetta TDI

My wife and I are looking for a commuter car (for her). We both like Jettas and test drove one earlier this evening. The TDI is attractive (to us; I know this is subjective to the individual) and gets good gas mileage.

Has anyone here heard anything good or bad about them?
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Old 01-11-2009, 11:29 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Good cars all round, as far as I know. Which year model you guys looking at?
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Old 01-12-2009, 12:15 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Good cars all round, as far as I know. Which year model you guys looking at?
We'd prefer a brand new one, so most likely 2009 (although a leftover 2008 model wouldn't be out of the question).

It's a bit more expensive than the regular Jetta, but we believe that the increased fuel efficiency and durability of diesel engines would more than make up for it.
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Old 01-12-2009, 08:41 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Which transmission, six-speed stick or the six-speed DSG (paddle shift with a full auto mode)?

I heard they were both very well matched to the motor's powerband so I'm just wondering what you have in mind.
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Old 01-13-2009, 03:49 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I work at the VW plant in South Africa, and the Jetta is one of the models we build here. It's obviously not the same car (we only export RHD), but I think the catalytic converters are produced here.

From what I hear, they're pretty solid cars. Very few returns/problems that I've heard of. I can't comment on the engine because we don't have the 'green' diesel variant over here yet. Good handling and responsiveness, nice ride and feeling through the steering wheel. A bit too long for my personal taste.

Good, solid family car.
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Old 01-18-2009, 02:52 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Forget about a leftover, there's no such thing as an '08 TDI in NA. The '09 is the newest version of the TDI, dispalcement is increased to 2.0l in the Jetta, it now has common rail injection, and meets 2010 emissions regs through the use of DPF's. I've been driving a Jetta TDI for last several years and wouldn't trade it for anything. That said, I wouldn't buy a new one since I wouldn't buy the first model year of ANY major design change. You said this is a commuter for your wife, is she the kind of girl who doesn't mind fueling at a typical dirty diesel pump, and will she pour additive in the tank so the fuel won't gel? And you can forget about using bio-diesel in any concentration greater than 5% also. Go here for lots more info...Fred's TDI Page. TDIClub.com. VW TDI Enthusiast Community. And good luck.
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Old 01-18-2009, 09:11 PM   #7 (permalink)
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My husband drives a 2003 VW Beetle TDI. He is quite familiar with TDIs in general. His response:

"I like them. I only recommend the manuals."


Of note: this TDI does run into some trouble starting at -6 degrees F and below. Cold temperatures are naturally difficult on any diesel engine.
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Old 01-24-2009, 06:31 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I've driven one and, if I had the money, it'd be one of my first choices for a new car. Great power, faster top speed (by 1mph) than the gas Jetta, and pretty decent mileage. Once you break down the added cost of diesel fuel, you're only saving about .02 to .04 cents per mile, not counting the added cost of purchasing the car. Buy the car because you're in it for the coolness and longevity of the vehicle itself, not just that you're looking to save on gas.
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Old 01-27-2009, 04:49 AM   #9 (permalink)
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The early to mid 90's VW's broke down like crazy... kind of like the ones earlier than that, except then computers and other complicated parts had been implimented, so those generations of VWs were a pain and very expensive to maintain...
Anyway, I've heard that those problems have been addressed and VWs are actually somewhat reliable now.

So my question is, why a jetta? If it's a commuter car, then your wife just needs something to get from point A to B. If you're sticking with VW, then get the Golf TDI. They get 65mpg. SIXTY-FIVE MILES PER GALLON!!! Also, they still fit 2 people VERY comfortably and 5 people relatively easily.
Plus, she won't look like all those yuppies and teenie boppers in Jettas

Last edited by PulpMind; 01-27-2009 at 04:52 AM..
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Old 02-02-2009, 09:41 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Unless Vw's have changed in the last 4 years I would avoid avoid them due to frequeny & costs to repair. They drive great but have way too many repairs. I love the old Vw's (1972 and back) but would shy away form the newer models due to excessive repairs.
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