The Volkswagen Jetta is popular – really popular. The Jetta (sold as the Vento or the Bora in certain markets) is Volkswagen’s best-selling model worldwide, outdoing both the fashionable Beetle and zippy Golf. The origin of the Volkswagen Jetta dates back to 1979, at the Frankfurt auto show. Since then, the unassuming front-wheel drive sedan has gone on to acquire a cult following and numerous awards.
History of THE VW JETTA
Third Generation VW Jetta
Instead of going back to the decade of big hair, punk rock and Ronald Regan, we will begin by looking at the later years of Jetta production starting in 1996.
Fourth Generation VW Jetta (1999-2005)
A rounded shape and arched roofline define the fourth generation Jetta. Both a sedan and wagon were offered with a wide array of engine options under the hood. The Jetta could be had with anything from a 2.0L 4-cylinder gas engine to a 1.9L turbo diesel. Either an automatic or manual transmission was available, as well as both front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive.
Fifth Generation VW Jetta (2005-2010)
The fifth generation Jetta, characterized by its fancy chrome grille, began hitting dealership showrooms in 2006. Engine options included a 1.8 L 4-cylinder, 1.9 L 4-cylinder diesel, 2.0 L 4-cylinder or 2.5 L 5-cylinder. This generation also introduced the new dual clutch automatic transmission.
The Current VW Jetta (2011-2015)
Finally, we come to the sixth generation Jetta. For the first time in the car’s history, the Jetta was no longer the sedan version of the Golf. The new model features a longer wheelbase and more interior room than the outgoing model. The exterior got more modern sheet metal and the interior got higher quality materials throughout. Engine options for the first year model included a 2.0L 4-cylinder, 2.5L 5-cylinder and a 2.0L diesel 4-cylinder.
Model year 2012 introduced an optional Fender audio system and 2013 added an all-new hybrid model to the lineup. In 2014, a new 1.8L turbo 4-cylinder replaced the aging 2.5L 5-cylinder.
For 2015, the Volkswagen Jetta has already racked up numerous awards, including the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s Top Safety Pick. As long as it stays true to its crowd pleasing formula, the Jetta will continue to be Volkswagen’s best seller.