America's best-selling VW has been replaced | Top Gear
BBC TopGear
BBC TopGear
The Latest US News & Reviews
USA News
Saturday 9th December
Detroit Motor Show

America's best-selling VW has been replaced

The Volkswagen Jetta is now more coupe-like, apparently. But it's not for the UK

Published: 15 Jan 2018

This is the new Volkswagen Jetta, freshly unveiled at the 2018 Detroit motor show. Before you get too attached to it, it won’t be coming to the UK.

Is that a great shame? It all depends on how much you like the looks. Previous Jettas have been little more than a Golf saloon – and probably a bit dumpier than their hatchback base – but this one is a little more svelte. It’s probably not as ‘coupe-like’ as VW would like you to believe, but it’s smart enough.

Advertisement - Page continues below

The Jetta is VW’s best-selling car in America. And funnily enough, VW isn’t trumpeting diesel power. It comes with a 1.4-litre turbo petrol engine with 147bhp and 184lb ft, linked to either a six-speed manual or eight-speed auto.

There’s a ton of safety equipment on offer – all the lane assist and active cruise stuff that’s the stepping stones to self-driving – while VW proudly shouts about its six-year/72,000-mile aftercare, which it calls the ‘People First Warranty’.

Like tech? VW’s digital cockpit is on the options list, as is comprehensive phone linkup (Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and MirrorLink) and a 400-watt Beats stereo.

The Jetta is longer and wider than before, with most of its extra length in the wheelbase. VW describes it as ‘fun to drive’, and if you go for the R-Line trim you’ll get an electronic differential setup on the front axle. Even if it hasn’t quite got enough power to really cause trouble.

Advertisement - Page continues below

Perhaps VW should bring back the Jetta GTI to compensate. Then we’ll start the campaign to get it to Britain…

Top Gear

Get all the latest news, reviews and exclusives, direct to your inbox.

More from Top Gear

See more on Jetta

Subscribe to the Top Gear Newsletter

Get all the latest news, reviews and exclusives, direct to your inbox.

By clicking subscribe, you agree to receive news, promotions and offers by email from Top Gear and BBC Studios. Your information will be used in accordance with our privacy policy.

BBC TopGear

Try BBC Top Gear Magazine

Get your first 5 issues for £5