Jetta Hybrid: First Impression

Jetta Hybrid: First Impression

I’ve always described hybrid vehicles as “Sewing machines on wheels.”  Until now, there has never been a hybrid built that proved my wrong in that description.  Well, I got to play with the new 2013 Jetta Hybrid yesterday and I was very pleasantly surprised!

VW Jetta Hybrid

The 2013 VW Jetta Hybrid is fun to drive and gets a combined 45mpg average!

Style-wise, its a Jetta, with some subtle tweaks to set it apart from its non-hybrid siblings.  An updated front grill with blue-trimmed Hybrid badges, side and rear diffusers and front and rear spoilers to help with aerodynamics add a lot to the styling, along with the new wheel options.

For performance, it does not disappoint at all!  The one thing I can see being a negative is owners will get carried away by the performance and drive it around like its a GTI, then say, “what happened to my fuel economy?”  It is a blast to drive when you want power and performance, and a wonderfully frugal fuel-sipper when you ask that of it.  I got 43.9mpg on one all-city drive around Anaheim, and 46.8 mpg on another drive!  Obviously I was trying my best, but with practice and getting used to the throttle I’m confident I could do even better.

The only real negative is trunk space.  Its the only hybrid sedan in its class with 60/40 split folding seats though, so that makes up for the smallish trunk size due to the hybrid battery placement.  The only hybrid that really has an advantage over the Jetta here is the Prius hatchback, but then again, you’d have to drive a Prius, and that would take you right back to the worst of the sewing machines on wheels!  There was an electric skateboard at the training, and it actually beat the Prius in a short drag race!

The Jetta is the fastest Hybrid, has better fuel economy than the Hyundai Sonata Hybrid and Honda Civic Hybrid, and is most importantly FUN TO DRIVE!  Owning a Volkswagen should be something to smile about, and is with the new Jetta Hybrid.

The 2013 Jetta Hybrid will be arriving in showrooms in about a month, so contact me here if you’re interested in taking a look at them when they arrive!

 

Tutorial: Steering Wheel Controls

A short tutorial on the use of the left-hand steering wheel mounted controls available from VW.  These are available on the new Volkswagen Jetta, Passat, CC, Sportwagen, Tiguan, GTI, Golf, Touareg and Beetle.  Some vehicles vary slightly.

 

VOLKSWAGEN JETTA HYBRID IS THE WORLDS FASTEST HYBRID

2013 Jetta Hybrid is worlds fastest

From Media.VW.com

Motor Trend magazine writer Carlos Lago runs 185 mph (298 kph) in turbocharged Jetta Hybrid to set Hybrid Speed Record at the Bonneville Salt Flats

Herndon, VA –  Volkswagen announced today that a 2013 Jetta Hybrid driven by Motor Trend Associate Road Test Editor Carlos Lago recorded a speed of 185.394 mph (298.363 kph) at the Bonneville Salt Flats, near Wendover, Nevada, during the Southern California Timing Association’s (SCTA) annual Speed Week. This is the fastest speed ever achieved by a production-based hybrid car on the famed Bonneville Salt Flats.“Achieving this speed at Bonneville shows that the all-new 2013 Jetta Hybrid is a distinctly different offering in the compact hybrid class,” said Jonathan Browning, CEO and President, VW Group of America. “As well as being expected to achieve combined fuel economy of 45 mpg, the Jetta Turbo Hybrid also retains the fun-to-drive nature you expect from a Volkswagen in a segment dominated by less exciting vehicles.”Lago drove a Jetta Hybrid specially modified to run according to SCTA rules. The all-new Jetta Hybrid marries a 1.4-liter turbocharged, direct-injection four-cylinder TSI® gasoline engine that generates150 horsepower with a seven-speed DSG® dual-clutch automatic transmission and an electric motor that provides an additional 27 hp. The Jetta Hybrid is part of Volkswagen’s Think Blue® strategy, an initiative that encourages eco-friendly mobility and progressive ideas for responsible action in everyday life.To achieve the kind of horsepower needed to run at 185 mph (298 kph) at Bonneville, the powertrain was modified by Volkswagen R&D in Wolfsburg, Germany. Project integration and other modifications to enable the car to run safely on the salt were handled by A-Salt Racing and Advanced Product Engineering, based in Camarillo, California. The implementation and final calibration of the drivetrain in the car was supported by the engineers from the Volkswagen Test Center California in Oxnard, CA.

“We are really proud that our new Jetta Hybrid is the world’s fastest hybrid,” said Marc Trahan, Executive Vice President, Group Quality. “It was a real challenge to integrate the complex hybrid elements and generate the power needed to run at these speeds. The Jetta Hybrid Land Speed Record project shows both the sporty nature of our Hybrid offering and the technical excellence of our engineers in Wolfsburg and in the Test Center California.”

Motor Trend Editor-in-Chief Ed Loh commented: “It is a real honor to partner with Volkswagen in this project and we look forward to sharing this adventure with our 1.1 million magazine subscribers, our more than three million website unique users, and our increasingly popular YouTube channel. And we hope that we will be back at the Salt very soon to go even faster with the Jetta Hybrid.”

Stay tuned here as I’m going to be going to VW’s Jetta Hybrid training course in early October and will have a full write-up shortly after that!

Hybrids coming?

VW Jetta Hybrid

From Das Auto magazine…

“No compromise.” “Best of all worlds.”

Those are mighty big claims—particularly when it comes to cars with the best gas mileage without compromising performance.

But big claims are nothing new for Volkswagen—think about the nimble, fuel-efficient [1] Jetta TDI®Clean Diesel.

And now there’s another Volkswagen that’s just as eco-conscious: the all-new 2013 Jetta Hybrid. More than just another “me too” entry in the field, the Jetta Hybrid is something altogether different. Turbocharged. Seven-speed. Dual-clutch automatic transmission. All of which let you zip from zero to 60 in less than nine seconds—while delivering an impressive 45 mpg [1].

Volkswagen engineers found a way to combine the most advanced fuel-saving technology with sporty performance, plenty of rear legroom, sleek styling and amazing value. “It’s the first no-compromise compact hybrid,” says John Ryan, Volkswagen of America product manager for compact vehicles. “It simply offers the best of all worlds.”

The Jetta Hybrid is lightweight, sleek and quiet. Take the turbocharger. In any hybrid, a traditional gas engine pairs with an electric propulsion system. But with the Jetta Hybrid, drivers get a robust 170 hp as well as a DSG® automatic transmission. Translation? In Sport mode, the Jetta Hybrid delivers an extra boost of power with the push of a button.

Even in electric-only mode, the Jetta Hybrid can reach speeds of 44 mph. “This is a real benefit in stop-start city driving,” Ryan says. “Think of the times you’re stuck in traffic, moving 10 feet at a time. Instead of sitting there with a gas engine idling, the Jetta Hybrid will move using only zero-emission electric power.”

Even with all its advances, the Jetta Hybrid, which goes on sale later this year, is still a Volkswagen through and through. “With the Jetta Hybrid, we are staying true to our Volkswagen DNA, offering exceptional fuel economy coupled with great driving dynamics,” Ryan says. “It is truly the turbo for hybrid fans—or the hybrid for turbo fans.”