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2012 VW Jetta SportWagen TDI


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I took ownership of a 2012 VW Jetta SportWagen TDI earlier this month. I ordered it back in May. This is my first new car... stark contrast to my ever-growing stable of $500 Fords. I traded in my 2005 Jaguar X-Type SportWagon which was just under 100k miles. The age and mileage of the Jag, plus the total annual mileage I put on my cars prompted the decision to buy this vehicle. I loved the Jag, and I do miss it, but after a day in the new car, it was easier to let it go.


I read an article from 2009 a couple days ago which stated that 80% of VW JSWs were ordered with the TDI engine and VW was not prepared for the demand. The combination continues to be in high demand while VWs other models haven't seen anything near the same numbers. I ordered a MTX model, which required the long wait. DSG (ATX) models are common around here, but I did not care for the meticulous and costly maintenance schedule of the auto, even if it does claim a 1mpg highway advantage.


This car is driver oriented. The gearbox shifts smoothly with short positive throws. Ride and handling are very similar to the Contour... similar size, wheelbase, and weight distribution. The JSW has independent rear suspension while the smaller Golf variants (on which the car is based, despite the Jetta name) have twist beam suspension (exc. GTI). The TDI's powerband is different from what I'm used to, and driving the 6 speed in city traffic requires more shifting. Most of my miles are spent cruising on the highway, which is where the TDI MTX is best suited.


Overall, very pleased with the car and I expect lots of reliable miles. I added tint and rims immediately. VWs prices for optional wheels was quite high.



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We have a 04 GLS TDI 4 door in the family and it's been a good car. I'm not keen on VW's reliability track record however as that car had more recalls than the Contour ever did..lol.



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Yeah, the reliability was poor for a period. Supposedly it's improved. I grilled the salesman at length, but of course he's biased. German engineered, assembled in Mexico. Rumor has it this is the last year for this body style, since the '11 Jetta sedan is now a standalone platform. I've never been a fan of VWs in general. After I crunched some numbers, the impending maintenance and repair for the Jag, plus fuel mileage over the next 5 years... the new car won. Insurance only went up by $10 a month.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Anybody got a hook up on OEM VW parts?


I killed Bambi last week. Cracked up the right headlamp, snapped a tab on the grill and left a small crack in the bumper. I'm not going to file an insurance claim. 40 days and 4000 miles old. This is why I like $500 Fords.

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  • 2 weeks later...
...just love the VW and Audi diesels...pity we don't get the Ford Euro diesels over here,I'd buy one in a shot!!
Agreed. If the new Focus was available with a diesel, I'd have bought that instead. Living in a rural area, diesel is very common around here. And driving anywhere is at least 30 minutes on the highway. Diesel's MPG just makes sense. We average 100 / day commuting to work and running errands. The other cars take premium unleaded, and the price of diesel fuel is about the same. 40+ MPG has been nice.
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  • 4 weeks later...
  • 11 months later...

I had a rental for a month on a 2012 jetta 2.5. Loved it. Almost bought a new gti after I test drove one but decided to fix my contour. I'm regretting that decision but needed to save up for a bigger down payment. I am kinda scared if I get one in a year because of the reliability of the dsg which I love. That's a great looking tdi you have there and wish the best for you

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Wow didn't see how old this thread was lol


Hey, since you brought it back, time for an update!


At around 10,000 miles my wife hit a cat at highway speeds. The entire bottom of the front bumper cover was blown apart. Waiting on tax return to have it fixed. The cat did far more damage than the deer I hit at 4,000 miles.


The car hit 40,000 miles at 1 year old. It had a few teething problems.


The rear split/fold/pass through seat was replaced under warranty when the pass through failed to latch.


The entire panoramic moonroof was replaced under warranty because it was installed incorrectly. It would bind on the passenger side.


The steering wheel was misaligned. The dealer tried to tell me that alignments were not covered under warranty. I told him the alignment was not the problem. He didn't bother to even put it on the rack and check. After our talk, he put it on the rack. Alignment was fine. Steering wheel was off. Fixed under warranty.


40,000 miles is the first trans service for the DSG. Thankfully, I drive with 3 pedals, the way God intended. The dealer cost for trans service on the DSG is $400+ every 40,000 miles. There is no maintenance required for the 6spd MTX.


My sister-in-law bought a 2013 Jetta 2.5L DSG. She loves it. I tried to convince her to get the TDI, but the dealer changed her mind. She's regretting that now. We've live in a rural area and she wishes she got the 47mpg we're getting.


Also at 40,000 miles, the OEM Continental tires were done. I replaced them with Yokohama YK580 because that's all the tire shop had in stock that day. Our fuel mileage went from 46-47mpg to under 40mpg... like 36-38. I replaced the tires (free of charge) with Goodyear Assurance Fuel Max low rolling resistance tires. Fuel mileage is back to where it should be. The Yokos had a smooth ride, but noisier than I expected. The Goodyears are quieter with a smooth ride.


All in all, I really enjoy driving this car. The TDI is zippy, surprisingly so. The 6spd MTX has a short throw and snicks from gear to gear easily. Handling is quite good for a wagon on LRR tires.

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