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3/4 Front Glamour 2013 Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen

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Expert's Rating

4.7Excellent

MPG 27 City / 37 Highway
Pros
  • Smooth ride
  • Superb fuel economy with diesel engine
  • Lots of cargo space
Cons
  • Handling could be sharper
  • TDI models are pricey
  • Higher vibration levels with diesel engine
, Automotive Editor -
With the utility of a small crossover and a highway rating of 33 mpg, the Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen has what it takes to lure SUV owners back to wagons.

Introduction

In today's eco-conscious market, many shoppers favor crossovers over traditional SUVs for better fuel economy with similar space. But for those willing to go a step further, the Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen may be the best choice of all.

The five-door wagon offers two powertrain options. On the S and SE, a 2.5-liter five-cylinder engine delivers 170 horsepower while getting up to 21 mpg city and 33 mpg highway. A TDI model, meanwhile, features 2-liter turbo-diesel engine with over 230 pound-feet of torque and economy ratings of 30 mpg city and 42 mpg highway.

The SportWagen also has the utility to rival some sport utility vehicles. With its 60/40 rear seat folded, it boasts 66.9 cubic feet of cargo space—more than Chevrolet's Equinox crossover.

Volkswagen continues to base the SportWagen on its previous-generation Jetta, and that's a good thing. The quality of interior materials is good, and handling—a typical Volkswagen virtue—is nimble.

Which Style To Buy?

2013 Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen
Starting price
$11,995

2013 Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen 2.0L TDI

Recommended for: Drivers looking for a wagon with a large cargo area and excellent fuel economy.

Equipped with one of VW's clean-diesel engines, the TDI SportWagen is green and well equipped. Interior features include a 115V power outlet, an iPod interface and floor-mounted ambient lighting. Embossed floor mats are found in the front and rear, and a cargo area cover comes with all SportWagens. A ten-speaker system with a touchscreen and CD/MP3/WMA player provides audio entertainment. The TDI also gets a six-speed manual transmission equipped with a hydraulic clutch, 16-inch alloy wheels, tinted glass, and a chrome grille and dual exhaust tips.

2013 Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen
Starting price
$11,995

2013 Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen 2.5L S

Recommended for: Shoppers wanting lots of versatility at a low price.

The base model of the SportWagen lineup is a good-value. Interior features include climate control with a pollen filter and a total of three power outlets. Cloth covers the seats, and the luggage compartment is fully carpeted. The tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel is leather-wrapped. The S rides on 16-inch steel wheels and exhales through dual exhaust tips. The bumpers are body-color, as are side mirrors that feature integrated turn signals. Black roof rails and tinted glass are also standard.

2013 Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen
Starting price
$11,995

2013 Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen 2.5L SE

Recommended for: Buyers desiring a leather-like upholstery.

The most noticeable upgrade on the SE trim is a set of 16-inch alloy wheels. Other standard equipment includes a six-speed automatic transmission, chrome window trim and a chrome grille. The windshield washer nozzles are heated and the tires are equipped with a Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS). The leatherette seating surfaces are complemented by leatherette trim inserts in the door panels. The steering wheel, shift knob and brake handle are leather-wrapped. A premium sound system comes with a touchscreen, HD Radio and Bluetooth music streaming capability. Additionally, a three-month trial subscription to SiriusXM satellite radio comes with every SE SportWagen.

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