Volkswagen announced today a more affordable version of its Jetta diesel, called the Value Edition. The new car has less content than the previous 2014 Volkswagen Jetta TDI, but also a considerably lower cost.
The 2014 Volkswagen Jetta TDI Value Edition is based on the compact sedan's S trim level, which usually comes with a 115-hp, 2.0-liter inline-four engine but in this case has a 2.0-liter turbodiesel inline-four rated for 140 hp and 236 lb-ft of torque. Equipment includes 16-inch steel wheels, heated cloth seats, cruise control, and a six-speaker sound system with a CD player and satellite radio. With a six-speed manual transmission, the 2014 Volkswagen Jetta TDI Value Edition costs $22,115, including destination; adding a six-speed dual-clutch automatic bumps the sticker up by $1100, to $23,215.
That means the new trim level significantly lowers the barrier to entry for a diesel-powered Jetta. The standard 2014 Volkswagen Jetta TDI -- which has equipment equivalent to the Jetta SE -- starts at $24,015 with a manual transmission and $25,115 with a dual-clutch automatic. Compared to the Value Edition, this version of the Jetta diesel adds features like alloy wheels, Bluetooth, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel. Pricing for the diesel extends as high as $28,235 for the TDI with Premium and Navigation, and a dual-clutch automatic transmission.
Regardless of trim level, the 2014 Volkswagen Jetta TDI is rated at 30/42 mpg (city/highway) with either transmission. Diesels accounted for 23.5 percent of all Volkswagen of America sales in 2013.
Lowering the price not only makes the diesel engine more accessible to Volkswagen Jetta buyers, but also helps the sedan compete with its primary U.S.-market competition, the 2014 Chevrolet Cruze diesel. The Cruze diesel, which starts at $25,810 after destination, also uses a 2.0-liter turbodiesel inline-four engine.
Volkswagen also announced today that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has awarded the 2014 Jetta its highest crash-test rating of five stars. The 2014 Volkswagen Beetle coupe and Passat also have received five-star ratings from NHTSA.