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2020 Volkswagen Jetta Pros vs Cons

Why Buy a 2020 Volkswagen Jetta?
Reviewed & fact checked by
James Murdoch

Are You Considering a 2020 Volkswagen Jetta? Here Are Some Reasons For and Against

The Volkswagen Jetta has been a popular car among consumers for many years now. Those who may be shopping for a compact sedan are likely wondering if the new 2020 Jetta is a vehicle worth their time and money. They also may be curious if it is a better or worse option than similar competitors. The following examines the best and worst aspects of the vehicle in question and looks at how it stacks up to rivals.

What's New for 2020?

There have been several changes for the 2020 Volkswagen Jetta, all of which help make it a more appealing vehicle. The Car-Net infotainment system has become a standard feature across the line. This gives all Jettas the ability to use a built-in, subscription-based WiFi hotspot. Going with either the SEL or SEL Premium trim levels now means getting wireless device charging as well as redesigned 17-inch wheels. Finally, there is a new Cold Weather package available for the SE and R-Line trim levels. Add this to the Jetta and it will gain heated rear seats, a heated steering wheel, heated windshield wipers, and remote start.

Ten Reasons You May Like the 2020 Volkswagen Jetta – The Pros

1. Easy-to-Use Tech Features

Fancy tech features are great, but it is important to be able to actually use them. The Jetta offers drivers a straight-forward and responsive touchscreen. Also adding to the ease of use here are the standard Android Auto and Apple CarPlay features, allowing for smartphone integration. Throw in other features, such as the WiFi hotspot and Bluetooth, and the Jetta has tech that is both simple to use and designed to make life easier. Available for the Jetta is also a full-screen navigation feature that allows drivers to see where they are going without losing focus on the road ahead.

2. Generous Interior Space

The 2020 Volkswagen Jetta is classified as a compact vehicle. That said, it has a remarkably spacious trunk. You get 14.1 cubic feet, which is more than enough for your average grocery shopping trip or weekend trip. It is also more than buyers are likely to find in other compact cars on the market. Like many vehicles these days, the Jetta also comes standard with 60/40 split-folding rear seats to allow for loading in longer cargo. As a bonus, the Jetta has several clever interior storage bins and a deep center console for stashing valuable gear.

3. Fun and Engaging Drive

When drivers first hear the stats for the Jetta, which produces 147-horsepower, they may not be impressed. Actually driving the vehicle, however, tells a different story. This sedan is incredibly responsive and will not leave drivers waiting when it is time to pull away from a stoplight. It also has the zip needed to merge on the highway without fear. Throw in the excellent handling and the result is a car that is all-around enjoyable to drive.

4. GLI Trim Options

For those buyers out there who simply cannot be satisfied by 147-horsepower, however, there are two GLI trim levels available of the Jetta. They are known as the S and the Autobahn. These two models upgrade to a turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder engine that can produce 228-horsepower. On top of the performance upgrade, these two trims are packed with great features, such as heated front seats, push-button start, and dual-zone automatic climate control. The Autobahn trim goes even further, giving the Jetta leather seats, wireless device charging, and a panoramic sunroof.

5. Manual Transmission Available

Although automatic transmissions have pretty much taken over, there are still die-hard manual fans out there. Luckily for them, the entry-level S, sporty R-Line, and two GLI trims all come standard with a six-speed manual to help the driver feel more in control. If preferred, buyers can swap this transmission out for the eight-speed automatic that comes standard in all other trim levels.

6. Great Gas Mileage

Buyers who are in the market for a non-hybrid that produces excellent fuel economy numbers will love the 2020 Volkswagen Jetta. Non-GLI models will give drivers 30 mpg while in the city and 40 mpg for their highway travels. Going with the more powerful engine underneath the hood of the GLI will drop these numbers down to 25 mpg city and 32 mpg highway, which is still respectable.

7. Available Interior Upgrades

Volkswagen offers many cool features for improving the look and comfort of the interior of the Jetta. Select models come with ambient interior lighting with ten different color options, for example, allowing for drivers to change the mood inside the cabin. Buyers can also opt for two-tone leatherette seats with bolsters. Not only do these look great, but they are also very comfortable for longer journeys. The Jetta offers both heated and ventilated front seats as well.

8. Driver Personalization Options

Drivers who find themselves sharing a vehicle will love the Jetta for its extensive personalization options. This vehicle can remember four different profiles. All four profiles can have different settings when it comes to several settings and systems, making it possible to sit down, press a button, and go.

9. VW Car-Net Remote Features

The Jetta comes with remote access features through Car-Net for five years. Drivers can download the handy app and then control a variety of things. Options include honking the horn, flashing the lights, and locking and unlocking the doors. Models of the Jetta that are equipped with remote start can also have that feature controlled via the app. This feature can be used even if the driver is miles away from their vehicle.

10. Fully-Loaded SEL Premium

While not as fast as the GLI models, the SEL Premium is the most luxurious offering in the 2020 Volkswagen Jetta lineup. It adds features such as leather upholstery, heated front sport seats, and navigation. Drivers will also enjoy the standard eight-speaker Beats audio system that comes in this trim. Other things that help to elevate this trim level include wireless device charging, HD radio, and a 10.25-inch digital cockpit.

Reasons You May Not Like the 2020 Volkswagen Jetta – The Cons

1. Cheap Cabin Materials

Although buyers will find a few soft-touch surfaces inside the Jetta, they will also find quite a few hard plastics. This really takes away from the look and feel of the cabin. This factor alone is unlikely to be a deal-breaker for most consumers, however.

2. Driver Aids are not Standard

While the Jetta does offer a pretty comprehensive list of advanced driver aids, they are not part of the standard equipment. In fact, the only somewhat advanced safety feature you will find on the entry-level trim is a rearview camera. That said, there is a driver assistance package available that bundles blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, and forward-collision warning for less than five hundred dollars.

3. Entry-Level Trim is Bare Bones

One of the Jetta's charms is its affordable price. Still, today's consumers expect a little more when it comes to standard features than what the S trim offers. The touchscreen is only 6.5-inches, for example, and the standard stereo system has only four speakers. There is also only manual-adjustment for the driver's seat. Some consumers may find they have all they need with the S trim, especially when considering its price.

4. Front Seats Could be More Comfortable

Although the cabin of the Jetta has plenty of space, the front seats are surprisingly narrow in the lower trims. Wider seats that offered up more support would have been a worthwhile upgrade. Consumers wanting to avoid this drawback can always go with a higher trim level.

5. Warranty Shortened for 2020

In years past, the Jetta had one of the most impressive warranties out there. The new 2020 model disappoints a bit, going down to 4 years or 50,000 miles for both the limited basic and powertrain warranties. On the bright side, Volkswagen is now offering two years or 20,000 miles of complimentary service, which may help drivers feel more confident when purchasing the 2020 Jetta.

How It Stacks Up to the Competition:

Those browsing this segment of the market will also likely see the Mazda3 as an option. This is undoubtedly a fun little vehicle, but it has a considerably smaller interior than the Jetta. Perhaps even more important to consumers are the facts that the Mazda3 has a higher starting price along with a lower predicted reliability rating. Another vehicle many find worth considering is the always-popular Toyota Corolla. The biggest disadvantage with this vehicle is the cargo capacity, which is quite a bit smaller than that of the Jetta. It also has less overall passenger volume and cramped back seats that adults are unlikely to want to ride in.


In many ways, the 2020 Volkswagen Jetta is the ideal vehicle for both commuting and smaller families. It offers great tech features, an engaging drive, and enough room for both passengers and cargo. One of the most significant drawbacks, which is the lack of standard driver aids, can be easily remedied without breaking the bank. Ultimately, the Jetta has a broad range of appeal and will be the right choice for many consumers.

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