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Volkswagen debuts Jetta TDI Value Edition

Thu, 09 Jan 2014

There was already a lot to like about the diesel Volkswagen Jetta TDI CleanDiesel, most of it having to do with fewer fillups, and so for 2014 Volkswagen is debuting a new Jetta TDI Value Edition that slices more than $2,000 off the price of entry. And speaking of the price of entry, it is now $22,115 for Volkswagen's smallest diesel sedan in the U.S. Yes, it seems Volkswagen has finally created a car for automotive journalists as well as members of the biodiesel-brewing crowd who are tired of fixing old Mercedes-Benz W123 station wagons from the 1970s, though we probably have the diesel Chevrolet Cruze to thank for the appearance of this particular model. So what will buyers receive in Volkswagen's attempt at a European-style "poverty-spec" version for the U.S. market?

First of all, the Volkswagen Jetta TDI Value Edition will be powered by a 2.0-liter TDI Clean Diesel engine good for 140-hp and 236 lb-ft of torque, though we suspect the figures that will delight most buyers of this model will be 30 mpg in the city 42 mpg on the highway. A six-speed manual transmission is standard, though a DSG dual-clutch automatic transmission is also available for an extra $1,100.

For an economy special, the Jetta TDI Value Edition actually includes quite a bit of kit like heated cloth seats, satellite radio, a six-speaker stereo with Volkswagen's Media Device Interface, and power windows all around. A couple features do get left off the menu, most notably tilt/telescoping steering (who would have thought it was so expensive?) as well as power seats. To be fair, manually ratcheting seats do save quite a bit of weight in cars, and won't go wrong after a few years. 16-inch steel wheels are standard on this version of the Jetta, though a true automotive journalist edition would have featured even smaller-diameter polished steelies without wheelcovers, and several upsetting shades of brown and olive exterior colors named after types of French mustards.

The Value Edition skimps on a few creature comforts, though you won't find crank windows here.

Even though the Jetta TDI Value Edition is now the cheapest way to get into a diesel Volkswagen, gas-powered Jettas are still a few thousand dollars cheaper -- $17,540 is the price of entry.

In addition to rolling out the Value Edition, Volkswagen has announced that the Jetta has received a five-star Safety Rating from the government's New Car Assessment Program (NCAP), joining the Beetle and the Passat which are also received overall five-star ratings.

By Jay Ramey