The good The 2014 VW Jetta TDI’s 2.zero-liter turbo diesel is an improbable engine with great torque and dependable efficiency. The DSG transmission options sport and handbook modes that may be exploited for thrills. Car-internet telematics adds GPS tracking, roadside assistance, and emergency response products and services by means of the vehicle, an app, or the web. Ride quality is managed and comfortable.

The dangerous road, wind, and engine noise are relatively suggested. Almost no security/driver aid tech is to be had for this era. Usual MDI 30-pin ipod cable means that you could have to purchase a USB dongle one by one.

The bottom Line the 2014 Volkswagen Jetta TDI deals general transportation at a cut price and an excellent engine, however techies will want to cling off for the better 2015 version.

If i am trustworthy, I was ready to be uninterested in the 2014 Jetta TDI that arrived within the car Tech garage this week. I used to be unimpressed with the Jetta SE 1.8T after I tested it final yr. And i was questioning if I will have to even hassle reviewing this base 2014 variation, with the 2015 Jetta simply across the nook. However then the Jetta TDI did one thing that I didn’t in point of fact predict; it made me smile.

With none infotainment tech extra advanced than an ipod dock and with its base adaptation amenities, this Jetta gained me over thanks to its torque turbo diesel engine.

A great engine

Lift the hood and you’ll be able to in finding that this Jetta is powered by means of a 2.0-liter turbo diesel engine — an absolute gem of an influence-plant that’s torque, flexible, and pretty thrifty.

It can be only a bit loud at idle, but makes up for the racket through outputting one hundred forty horsepower and 236 pound-toes of torque. It can be that 2d number that you can want to pay explicit consideration to. In this example, that engine is mated with a six-velocity DSG dual-grab computerized transmission in a front-wheel pressure configuration.

Drop it into power and roll onto the accelerator and you may also discover that off-the-line acceleration can really feel slightly hesitant. You too can discover that, when of their standard pressure mode, the engine and transmission tend to rely closely on the torque diesel’s skill to device round whereas spinning under 2,000 revolutions per minute. This gives the facility-educate a laid again feel and helps economy, but also makes it really feel a little lazy and less responsive than I comprehend it’s capable of. In this mode, the TDI never actually feels adore it’s working onerous, but for daily commuting that’s now not a foul factor at all.

The DSG incorporates sport software that is available by using pulling the shift lever past the stop for pressure. On this mode, responsiveness is sharpened up via permitting the engine to mess around in slightly higher rpm reaches and adjusting the transmission’s programmed shift factors. On the other hand, even this mode feels just a bit lazy for really sporty riding.

However then I popped the twin-seize gearbox into its manual moving mode and it eventually made me grin. I may have in fact laughed aloud at how the engine looked as if it would come alive in this mode. Run up the rpms between three, 000 revs and the engine’s moderately quick 5,000 and the TDI shines handing over sturdy, linear acceleration. Even when stretching its legs, the TDI never in reality feels taxed and there’s effortlessness to its acceleration. Paddle shifters would make this a much more fun force; however nudging the shift lever round wasn’t so unhealthy.

All of the while, the TDI is delivering lovely just right gasoline economy. Gasoline financial system. The EPA estimates that the 2014 Jetta TDI with the DSG will do 30 mpg within the metropolis, forty two mpg on the highway, and moderate out to about 34 mpg blended. I managed to finish my week at 38 mpg, which could be very spectacular taking into consideration that I frequently finish beneath the epas because our trying out process includes spending time in site visitors jams and spirited driving thru curvy, hilly terrain.

I can remember that the TDI’s engine isn’t an efficiency engine and that this is not a performance car; however I loved the flexibleness of this engine. It is in a position to ship grin-inducing acceleration if I requested it to, but is simply as satisfied to cruise endlessly at low-rpm, freeway speeds. Heck, i might be impressed with this power train if it has been underneath a cardboard field.

The cardboard box

For as much as i love the TDI and DSG combo, I’m no longer actually keen on the auto that surrounds it. There is nothing specifically offensive about it, however there also is not so much within the “professionals” column either. The Jetta is frumpy having a look on one hand, however on the other hand there is an appeal to its purposeful, simple design. Our instance arrived in “sweet White”, however “rental automotive White” would almost certainly be a more correct descriptor.

The chassis under the sheet metal is solely as safely bland. Coping with is uninspired and the slowest guidance takes a lot of turns to move from lock to lock. The result is that driving with zest requires massive dramatic steering inputs which can make the auto feel reasonably imprecise. The Jetta TDI’s managing is, merely put, just right sufficient.

The ride is beautiful smooth, soaking up bumps and highway imperfections for a at ease seat of the pants feel over cracked and potholed pavement. On the other hand, the cabin is not very insulated, because of this that you can get a good deal of highway and wind noise and diesel rumble as you roll alongside.

Creature comforts are restricted, but that’s to be anticipated from this entry-point, base TDI version. There is no sensible key entry or push button start, however you do get a switchblade type key and remote door unencumber. The dashboard is simplistic and built mostly of flat gray plastic with just a few guidelines of faux metal. The leatherette front bucket seats are heated, which is a nice touch, however i feel i might have preferred nice cloth seats to head with the VW’s Spartan inside.

These don’t seem to be lot complaints as they are observations. I am truly harping on VW’s econobox feel, as a result of i know that there are trim ranges above this base model that provide nicer inside materials, higher creature comforts, and higher tech. You get what you pay for and you don’t get a lot at the base model’s rather low value.

Being a base adaptation TDI, our Jetta used to be also mild on dashboard tech. The RCD 310 stereo features AM/FM tuning, Sirius satellite TV for pc radio, CD playback, and standard Bluetooth for arms-free calling and audio streaming. It is about as barebones as automotive stereos come nowadays whereas nonetheless ultimate acceptable, which may attraction to drivers who don’t seem to be hung up on bells and whistles.

The monochrome display would not exhibit lot knowledge and hides quite a few options beneath its bank of soppy keys and nested in its menu, but is obvious and easy to read at a look. Longer tune and station titles will now and again overrun, however large, high distinction letters are without a doubt an excellent thing for a stereo so easy. By not in reality doing so much, the RCD 310 manages to now not be a lot of a distraction when, for instance, selecting playlists on a paired ipod Nano.

The base edition’s RCD 310 stereo keeps it easy through not if truth be told doing a lot.Antuan Goodwin/CNET

The Bluetooth audio streaming in reality worked this time around, however I was once frustrated to find that i could not skip tracks on my paired Android cellphone when streaming Bluetooth audio. I could see monitor and artist information on the RCD 310’s show (which appears to point that BT AVRCP was working), but transport controls didn’t work with both the steerage wheel and the on-dash controls. So I had to touch my telephone to vary songs — not the top of the world, i know, nevertheless it bears mentioning.

A seamless annoyance for me is VW’s MDI connection, which uses swappable dongles for Apple’s 30-pin and common USB connection of media units. (Possibly, there may be additionally a brand new Apple Lightning adapter in the works.) The remainder of the business uses an easy USB port that works with the cables that you just already personal. As a non-Apple user, it is all the time irritating when VW automobiles arrive with no USB port for my transportable power stuffed with MP3 check tracks. My colleagues who use Apple Lightning units specific an identical annoyance at having to make use of a 30-pin to Lightning adapter.

Audio quality from the standard stereo system was better than I remembered it being after I tested the 2014 Jetta SE remaining yr. This situation stereo played loud and clear. Bass response most probably highest described as tight with robust output for a kick drum-kind sounds, however without very good extent for the extraordinary low end of the spectrum. It’s a thumper, not a boomer that sounds nice with, for instance, A Tribe known as Quest’s growth-bap sound. Alternatively, a step as much as the optional Fender audio system would most likely provide an extra versatile listening expertise for these searching for fuller sound.

Automotive-web connected

The closing Jetta rolled its telematics tech into a Connectivity bundle, but this 2014 TDI bundles the Vicars-web connectivity into the listing of standard features.

Functioning like a type of onstar for Volkswagens, automotive-net brings a lot of linked features including computerized crash response, roadside help (equipped by means of VW accomplice Allstate), and stolen-car location. Domestic options include notifications (by the use of e mail or SMS) for exceeding preset speeds or coming into or exiting preset, geofenced zones. Faraway services include far flung automobile locking, horn honk, destination download, and a concierge provider that lets the driving force talk to an operator to search for a vacation spot and have the location downloaded to the navigation gadget, if geared up. (Ours wasn’t.) Finally, Diagnostics instruments enable the driving force to schedule visits for provider and obtain vehicle health reviews.

Drivers can either have interaction with the car-internet options by way of pressing one of the most three buttons situated on the ceiling console in the automobile — information, roadside help, or SOS — to talk to a call heart operator, use an iphone application (an Android version is coming “soon” in step with a VW consultant), or get admission to the provider through a browser on an online-connected personal computer.

I was once able to try out the VW car-net app up to now on the 2014 Volkswagen Passat SEL and was once additionally given demonstrations of the roadside assistance and car-tracking options and located them to also be straightforward and accessible. I’m positive that it would function in a similar way on this VW, with the caveat that a scarcity of navigation will disable features like tackle download. Without a navigation device in location, car-net’s every day usefulness is severely limited, however having the emergency and roadside products and services staring at your back may just add to your peace of mind.

A six-month free trial of the automobile-web carrier is incorporated in the MSRP, after which it can value $200 per yr. To keep access. Going month-to-month shall be costlier, and committing to a couple of years yields reductions. VW states that the machine brings its autos into parity with telematics methods offered with the aid of GM, Hyundai, and Toyota at a competitive price.

Prepare for 2015

Must you buy the 2014 Volkswagen Jetta TDI? To your $25,545 (as examined), you’ll be able to get a vanilla car which is powered by way of an excellent engine and transmission aggregate. It can be clear after spending a big amount of time that the majority of the MSRP is invested beneath the hood. And that’s the reason ok. The Jetta TDI does a good job of turning in basic transportation with beautiful excellent value. For these after wheels with minimal fuss or tech distraction, the 2014 Jetta TDI is price a glance.

On the other hand, you may want to look forward to the 2015 VW Jetta to arrive for 2 reasons.

The new edition will share its modular underpinnings and its new 2.zero-liter TDI engine with the 2015 VW Golf TDI, which we have now already previewed and found to be an important little hatchback. The 2015 Jetta TDI will even share Volkswagen’s next-technology of cabin, safety, and driver support tech, which is value waiting for if you’re right here for automobile Tech.

Alternatively, when the 2015 edition arrives, it usually is more straightforward to find a deal on a new 2014 Jetta TDI, making this already good price a good better one.

2014 VOLKSWAGEN JETTA TDI TECH SPECS

Adaptation2014 Volkswagen Jetta
TrimTDI with DSG
Powertrain2.zero-liter turbo diesel 4-cylinder, six-pace DSG automatic transmission, FWD
EPA gas financial system30 mpg metropolis, forty two mpg freeway, 34 mpg combo
Observed fuel economy38 mpg
NavigationNot obligatory, not equipped
Bluetooth cellphone give a boost toUsual
Digital audio sourcesMDI digital interface, Bluetooth, CD, satellite TV for pc radio
Audio machineStandard, non-branded
Driver aidsN/A
Base price$24,725
Worth as tested$25,545