2016 Volkswagen Jetta vs. Its Competition

2016 Volkswagen Jetta

The 2016 Volkswagen Jetta has a fun and fuel-efficient new base engine, a new array of electronic active-safety systems, and the capacious interior and trunk it's boasted since 2011.

It's also head and shoulders above other compacts in handling and roadholding.

We haven't driven the all-new Chevrolet Cruze yet, but the last one was good and this one should be even better.

The Ford Focus has a cramped back seat, but it's fun to drive as well, and it's still neck-and-neck with the latest Jetta infotainment systems.

Both the Hyundai Elantra and Kia Forte are appealing and offer good value, but neither is known for handling.

The best on-road driving competitor for the Jetta, in fact, may be the Mazda 3—though its all-but-useless back seat is trounced by the roomy back compartment of the VW.

2016 Volkswagen Jetta2016 Volkswagen Jetta
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2016 Chevrolet Cruze2016 Chevrolet Cruze
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2016 Ford Focus Electric2016 Ford Focus
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2016 Hyundai Elantra GT2016 Hyundai Elantra
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2016 Kia Forte EX2016 Kia Forte
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2016 Mazda 32016 Mazda MAZDA3
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Quick Specs
7.6
The 2016 Volkswagen Jetta keeps its excellent handling and high safety ratings, but it's starting to show its age in a a few ways.
7.6
The 2016 Chevrolet Cruze inches closer to mid-size, while growing lighter, leaner, and more fuel-efficient.
8.4
From efficiency-minded models to the high-performance ST, the 2016 Ford Focus remains one of the best-driving small cars on the market.
8.2
Not quite a hot hatch, the 2016 Hyundai Elantra GT gives up some rear-seat space in the name of cargo room and European style.
7.6
There's a lot of curb appeal in the 2016 Kia Forte, although lackluster safety scores and cabin-comfort shortcomings keep it from being another Kia high-achiever.
8.4
The 2016 Mazda 3 is one of the best-driving and best-looking small cars, with a more premium feel than its (now even lower) price might suggest.
MSRP From     
$17,680$16,120$17,225$17,250$15,990$17,845
Gas Mileage     
23 MPG City / 48 MPG Hwy22 MPG City / 42 MPG Hwy19 MPG City / 38 MPG Hwy24 MPG City / 38 MPG Hwy21 MPG City / 39 MPG Hwy25 MPG City / 41 MPG Hwy
Engine     
Intercooled Turbo Regular Unleaded I-4Turbocharged Gas I4Regular Unleaded I-4Regular Unleaded I-4Regular Unleaded I-4Regular Unleaded I-4
EPA Class     
Compact CarsMidsize CarsCompact CarsMid-Size CarsMid-Size CarsCompact Cars
Style Name     
4-Door Manual 1.4T S4-Door Sedan Manual L4-Door Sedan S4-Door Sedan Manual SE (Alabama Plant)4-Door Sedan Manual LX4-Door Sedan Manual i Sport
Drivetrain     
Front Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel Drive
Passenger Capacity     
555555
Passenger Doors     
N/A4N/AN/AN/AN/A
Body Style     
SedanSedanSedanSedanSedanSedan
Transmission     
Manual w/ODManualManual w/ODManual w/ODManual w/ODManual w/OD
Detailed Spec Comparison
 2016 Volkswagen Jetta vs. 2016 Chevrolet Cruze2016 Volkswagen Jetta vs. 2016 Ford Focus2016 Volkswagen Jetta vs. 2016 Hyundai Elantra2016 Volkswagen Jetta vs. 2016 Kia Forte2016 Volkswagen Jetta vs. 2016 Mazda MAZDA3