Volkswagen's new plan of attack in the compact class has changed the Jetta sedan in some important ways--it's less costly to build, and has a much larger back seat. As a result, the sedan is selling better than it has in a decade.
While the Jetta four-door is changed, the SportWagen hasn't. It's still derived from the last-generation platform, and retains some important features like an independent rear suspension, a smaller back seat, and a higher-grade interior.
Tying the two models together, then is the single model we're most interested in here at GreenCarReports--the turbodiesel, available either as a Jetta TDI sedan or as the Jetta SportWagen TDI. Some 25 percent of Volkswagen sales in the U.S. are diesels these days, and driving the TDI reveals why they're so popular.
It starts with fuel economy. The 2.0-liter turbodiesel combines with either a six-speed manual transmission or a six-speed, dual-clutch gearbox which VW calls the DSG. In nearly all drivetrain combinations, the...
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