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STYLING | 7 out of 10
“crisp and handsome”
“Nothing very special to look at”
The Auto Channel
At nearly 180 inches long, the 2010 Volkswagen Jetta is almost a mid-size sedan now, so its proportions differ from past models. The Jetta doesn’t stand out from the pack, as it once did, for styling alone—it’s pleasant, inside and out, but by no means bold. To put it bluntly, the new Jetta looks too much like a large Toyota Corolla and not enough like its own crisply European ancestors.
Intellichoice agrees, calling it an “overgrown Toyota Corolla dressed in papa Passat's clothes.” They also remark, “Gone is the Teutonic styling, once elegant in its stark, purposeful appearance, replaced by a more staid, Japanese-influenced design.” This opinion is seconded by The Auto Channel, which feels that the Jetta is “nothing very special to look at, particularly in [its] soft gray color.” Edmunds cites the “dull exterior styling,” which “contradicts the nameplate’s youthful image.”
Not all reviewers are negative about the exterior, though. Automedia calls it “crisp and handsome, with its sculpted wedge profile, strong upper and lower character lines and contemporary taillamps,” while CNET says, “Gone are the boxy corners and the rectangular lights. VW has replaced them with more refined, curvaceous bodywork and lights that feature circles and ellipses.”
The 2010 Volkswagen Jetta might be generic outside, but inside it’s a well-drawn, well-fitted place. The roomy interior has a handsome, upscale look, with better materials in general than you'd find in an entry sedan, though the layout looks quite conservative, upright, and businesslike.
“Unfortunately, the interior doesn't live up to the expectations generated by the exterior styling,” laments CNET. But other reviewers like the look, with Edmunds referring to its “elegant trim,” and Automedia remarking, “The roomier new interior is attractively designed and beautifully assembled from premium materials throughout.”
Volkswagen might have a reputation for design flair, but it doesn't show here in the 2010 Volkswagen Jetta. Inside, function trumps form.