Throw a potent and economical turbodiesel into what’s already a pretty good car, and behold the 2012 Volkswagen Jetta Sportwagen TDI. This 5-passenger, 5-door compact wagon boasts a spo...
Throw a potent and economical turbodiesel into what’s already a pretty good car, and behold the 2012 Volkswagen Jetta Sportwagen TDI. This 5-passenger, 5-door compact wagon boasts a sporty drive, yet doesn’t skimp on ride comfort, and nearly 67 cubic feet of cargo space with the rear seats folded make it surprisingly utilitarian. Standard exterior amenities include 16-inch alloy wheels, a roof rack and heated, power-adjustable outside mirrors, while the cabin sports such standards as leatherette upholstery, a leather steering wheel, heated, power-adjustable front seats with a fold-flat passenger-side seatback, rear pass-through center folding armrest and a leather-trimmed shift knob. Remote power door locks, power windows, telescoping tilt-wheel steering, cruise control and air conditioning round out the comfort and convenience goodies in this little wagon, with an MP3-capable 6-CD changer with 10 speakers providing tunes. The audio system is further bolstered by satellite radio, a USB connection and a memory card slot. Bluetooth hands-free technology and phone pre-wiring top off the list of standard features, with splash guards, upgraded 17- and 18-inch wheels, a rear spoiler and carpeted front and rear floor mats all available.
The star of the 2012 Jetta Sportwagen TDI show is a 140-hp 2.0-liter direct-injected turbodiesel inline 4-cylinder (I4) powerplant that mates with the standard 6-speed manual transmission for 236 lb-ft of torque. Mileage estimates for the 6-speed stick shift are 30 mpg city/42 highway, and there’s a nifty DSG 6-speed shiftable auto-manual transmission available that’s fun to play with, but drops mileage to 29/39. Be advised that all Sportwagen trims, including the 2012 TDI, are front-wheel drive (FWD) only.
Standard safety features in the 2012 Jetta Sportwagen TDI include 4-wheel antilock brakes (ABS), traction and stability control, front and rear head airbags, front side-mounted airbags and front head-restraint whiplash protection. Further peace of mind is provided by, among other things, standard daytime running lights, turn-signal-integrated mirrors, a post-collision safety system and a remote antitheft alarm.