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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
continued from page 1 : http://www.myturbodiesel.com/1000q/a6/2011-VW-Jetta-TDI-buying-guide-reviews.htm
and page 2: http://www.myturbodiesel.com/1000q/a6/2011-2012-VW-Jetta-TDI-reviews-2.htm


Inspect the car for even panel gap and paint defects. Some cars are damaged at port or during transit and it's not disclosed. It could also be a factory defect. If the dealer's auto detailer uses dirty tools, they can actually damage the paint by putting swirl marks or halos into the paint. This is especially noticeable on dark colors. Inspect your paint by looking under a strong light for defects. See 1000q: polishing paint for some examples of swirl marks or spiderwebbing. Clay bar treatment will also remove any rail dust, sea salt, or other dirt that got stuck into the paint during transport over sea or rail. See 1000q: claybar treatment for details. It's a new car and should have new condition paint. Another problem is many makes of new cars is orange peel. Some thumbnail pictures are to the right (click for large view, from glossycar.com). Orange peel is a wavyness to the surface of the paint. Some very minor orange peel is considered normal for mass produced cars and can be corrected by wetsanding and polishing by any professional detailer. Some cars have had spots or defects in the clearcoat. If a hairdryer makes it disappear it's moisture trapped in the clearcoat. Sometimes it goes away and sometimes it causes flaking.

Many car settings must be set up by the dealer. There are also settings that can't be accessed through the MFD+ (instrument cluster multifunction display). For example, the car comes from the shipper in sleep mode to prevent battery drain. The power seat/power windows/sunroof remote functions are also setup. The window pinch protection can even be turned off. See 1000q: window pinch protection and steering adaptation for how to do it yourself. These options can be adjusted with a VCDS diagnostic tool or the dealer can do it. One option is opening and closing the windows and sunroof using the remote key fob. You can only do this if the option is enabled. See 1000q: enable comfort window operation for details. Otherwise you can hold the key in the door lock to open or close them.

Even though this has been a problem for years, dealers are still not doing the items on the pre-delivery checklist. One of them is removal of the shipping blocks from the front struts. This will make the car ride high and stiff.


TRIPLE CHECK what you ordered vs. what you are taking delivery of before singing ANY paperwork. Many people thought they were ordering one car and for various reasons, took delivery only to discover it was missing an option or had some damage. Once you drive off the lot, it'll be harder to get the dealer to cooperate.

Other misc stuff to know after taking delivery
Don't put gasoline in the car! Common misfueling situations are: someone borrows the car and fills it up with gas as a favor. The car runs out of fuel and roadside assistance brings gas. The car goes to the dealer and the lot attendant puts gasoline in it. If someone does put gas in your TDI, stop as soon as practical and safe and tow it to a mechanic! The car probably won't get very far but don't risk getting into an accident by pulling over suddenly!

To change the automatic DSG transmission fluid (every 40,000 miles), see 1000q: DSG DIY fluid change. It costs under $150 when doing it yourself but could cost $400-900 at the dealer. Please read the owner's manual for the maintenance schedule and other things to know.

Truck stop high flow fueling pumps nozzles won't fit in your Jetta's fuel filler. High flow pumps are larger and flow much faster to fill a truck's large fuel tank. There are ribs on the fuel filler neck to prevent it from going in. You may hear of venting or a ventectomy- it does not apply to this generation of TDI. Don't push the fuel filler nozzle too far or else the metal rings around the nozzle can get stuck on the filler neck.

Expect fuel economy to increase after engine break in by 10-15%. It's particularly noticeable because the greater the fuel economy, the more mpg you get as a percentage of break in. In general, car salespeople don't know much about cars other than what's in the sales brochure so I wouldn't take mechanical advice from them. See 1000q: engine break in for some advice in addition to the instructions in the owner's manual.

If you hear the engine fan running fast and smell something overheating at the tailpipe even after shutting the car off, it means the car was in the middle of a self clean cycle (every 450-600 miles). It may also occur if you're stopped at a stoplight in traffic. It will resume once you start driving and the car is warmed up again. the DPF filter captures soot and burns it off in cycles. Much more information can be found in the FAQ article: 1000q: DPF FAQ for VW.

There is no traction control OFF button as in past years. There is no reason to turn it off, even if you're stuck in mud-snow anyways.

All emissions equipment is covered under warranty under federal emissions laws. Do not tamper with any federal emissions equipment. Due to the engine management, there is no way to disable the DPF or bypass the DPF. Removal of the DPF filter will set off a check engine light but there will probably be aftermarket solutions to disabling the CEL on your Jetta.

Because diesel engines are throttled by fuel and run off oil, any diesel engine could have a rare mechanical malfunction called a runaway engine. If the car is in gear it will also accelerate. If the engine races on its own, keep control of the car and shut off the engine as soon as it's safe and practical. Take it to a mechanic before starting it again. Read more about a diesel engine runaway and some causes at 1000q: runaway engine FAQ.

A common complaint on many German cars is a fast speedometer. German law doesn't allow for slow speedometers even after equipment variations like different wheel and tire sizes. The odometer reading should be correct for warranty and maintenance purposes. The mpg meter is based off that so it should be fairly accurate. However, the best way to calculate fuel economy is by filling the tank all the way at the same pump each time, and dividing the amount of fuel pumped to the miles traveled. You can adjust the speedometer and fuel economy meter. See 1000q: speedometer fix or 1000q: mpg meter fix for more details. It's for a mk5 Jetta but the same procedure applies to mk6 cars.

All US VW come with 6 airbags. Some have optional rear seat lower side airbags. They also have standard ESP, shoulder harness seat belts, anti theft immobilizer, traction control/stability control. See if any insurance discounts apply.

If you don't like hill hold or want to add it, you can enable or disable it: http://www.myturbodiesel.com/1000q/a6/hill-hold-disable-vw.htm

Some TDI have gotten condensation in the intake which settles in the intercooler. In cold weather, this condensation can freeze and cause rough cold running or harder start. The main symptom is that once you start moving, the engine rpm goes up which moves the intake air faster and the engine stumbles. This will not throw a check engine light/malfunction engine light. The danger is that if too much fluid makes it from the intercooler to the engine, once inside the engine cylinder, can hydrolock the engine and bend the engine cylinder rods. http://www.myturbodiesel.com/forum/f7/cr-cold-weather-inspection-4197/ This is discussed in this thread. The fix is a repair kit which includes a new intercooler, sensor, lines, and what appear to be a valve to blow out water. Please note, this is an improvement on the design, not a 100% bulletproof fix. It decreases the chance of intercooler icing but does not eliminate it for everyone, everytime.

There is an empty clip in the trunk below the trunk latch. This is where the orange safety triangle and orange reflector vest go. These items are a requirement in Europe but are not equipped on North American cars so the clip is empty.


The TDI engine should only use VW spec 507.00 engine oil
for warranty purposes. DO NOT trust the dealer to comply with this requirement, even under their 3 years/36,000 mile free maintenance program! Dealer techs are busy and sometimes don't know any better. It could even be a matter of which bottle is closer. Always check which oil will be used on your car with the exact mechanic who is changing the oil. Also check the receipt for the part number.507 spec engine oil is important because it's very low ash. The more ash in the engine oil, the faster the DPF exhaust particulate filter will clog with ash. See 1000q: DPF FAQ for more on this system. Some oils that meet this spec are Castrol SLX Professional LL03, Motul specific VW 507.00, Total Quartz Ineo 5w30 507.00, and Mobil 1 ESP Formula 5W-30.

Here is the TSB in .pdf format which lists engine oils approved by VW http://www.myturbodiesel.com/images/pdf/vwoiltsb.pdf- click to view it (scroll down to the bottom for 507.00 oils) The part numbers for 5w-30 507.00 engine oil are:
VW# g v52 195 a1 (gv52195a1) for .5 liter
VW# gvw 052 195 m2 (gvw052195m2) for 1 liter
VW# gvw 052 195 m4 (gvw052195m4)for 5 liters

The Jetta TDI engine uses a timing belt and will need a timing belt change every 120,000 miles. All the idler rollers, water pump, timing belt tensioner, and any other required parts should also be changed at that time. The DIY parts price is about $400. If you can't DIY, ask around for an independent TDI expert before going to the dealer since if the dealer isn't experienced with TDI engines, the tech may not have as much experience as an independent TDI specialist. If you go to the dealer, expect to pay roughly $900-1,300.

A few TDI have had self destructing high pressure fuel pumps. Symptoms include poor running. Metal flakes in the fuel filter are evidence of this. If it happens, the entire fuel system must be cleaned/replaced. The problem is that the fuel pump is upstream of the filter. By the time flakes are caught by the filter, they've already contaminated the fuel injectors and other pumps. See 1000q: fuel filter replace on how to open the fuel filter canister. If you see flakes, it should immediately be brought to the attention of the dealer while under warranty. It's not a bad idea to keep all your fuel receipts in case they accuse you of putting gasoline in the car. Diesel fuel is an oil and lubricates the fuel system.

A few people have had pinhole leaks in the high pressure fuel system which showed up early on. This results in a fuel leak and diesel odor. If this happens to you, report it to the NTSHA since any potential fire hazard should be reported. Here are a few threads which discuss this - it appears to show up on #2 injector line often and it could be a design weak spot. http://www.myturbodiesel.com/forum/f19/fuel-leak-6757/ and http://www.myturbodiesel.com/forum/f19/2011-vw-jetta-fuel-leak-6919/

Don't add generic green Prestone or any other coolant not compatible with VW G12 coolant or else it will turn brown and sludge. The coolant system is sealed so if it's low, first determine where it's leaking out. The coolant should be red or light purple/pink.

If you ever need a replacement key, you must buy a new one due to the immobilizer system. All new VW have them. An unprogrammed immobilizer chip will shut the engine off after 1 second if it's not correct. See 1000q: immobilizer FAQ for more details. Used keys can only be used as the remote half (not the metal key half). See 1000q: a5 key FAQ for details on replacement smart keys. It's for a mk5 so the part number for the key is different but the rest is the same. The one difference is that the newest keys use encrypted chips which cannot yet be cracked.

Always use the parking brake when parking! It's good practice with any car but it is important on VWs because this sets the rear caliper self adjusters. It's best to apply the p-brake before shifting into park (auto trans) or first/reverse gear (manual trans) to put stress on the brake instead of the parking pawl or gears.

Some cars have misadjusted parking brakes. This robs fuel economy and wears down the brakes. Safely jack up the rear of the car and spin the wheels by hand. Do not put yourself in a position where you could be injured if the car falls! Light touching or scraping on the brakes is normal, resistance is not normal and should be adjusted by the dealer.

There are two red LED in the overhead console that point down at the shifter. This is ambient lighting.

The sunvisor slides out to help block the sun. An example is below.


All plastic headlight lenses will become weathered and pitted over time. A UV-resistant headlight cover or headlight protector will take the brunt of use and keep your headlights looking like new. Paint protection film over the front hood and fenders can also help prevent rock chips but it also costs a lot more than simple headlight covers. Paint protection film does reduce the shininess of the paint but it's not noticeable unless you're up close. It can also be removed without any damage to original paint. It should not be used on repainted panels since it could pull off some paint.

Basic window tint FAQ: Automotive glass locks some UV light but even a clear or light tint will block a lot more UV light. I like window tint because it helps prevent the interior from drying out and fading, prevent drying out and aging of skin (yours and leather seats), adds privacy, and holds the window better if it shatters. Window tint that isn't built into the glass is a stick on film that can be completely clear or near black out. Check your local laws for any restrictions on tint darkness. Never use ammonia based cleaners on tint since it can damage it. Use only simple soap and water on window tint for cleaning. If you listen to AM radio, do not use metallized tint because it interferes with AM reception. Depending on the brand/model of tint, FM reception should be fine with most metallized tints. This is because the diversity radio antenna is in the hatch window. The sharkfin antenna on the roof is for the satellite radio and GPS (if equipped).

All TDI have an electric heating strip (auxiliary air heater Z35) in the air vent to help warm up the cabin in cold ambient temperatures. It's enough to prevent the windshield from fogging over with frozen breath but it won't blow hot air. The faster the air vent is blowing, the less noticeable it won't have time to warm up. This is not on gas VW.

Do not add aftermarket rustproofing since it will void the factory rust warranty. VW are dipped in anti-rust zinc coatings and have a few layers of paint to prevent rust. While it could still happen and the rust warranty only covers certain kinds of rust, the best thing to do is to wash your car regularly, including the undercarriage. See 1000q: car detailing index for tips on how to avoid scratches and swirl marks from car washing. The best thing to do is to avoid automatic car washes unless they are "touchless".

Here are the transmission gear ratios:
Manual:
1st-3.77
2nd-1.96
3rd-1.26
4th-0.87
5th-0.86
6th-0.72
Reverse-2.57
Final I-3.45
Final II-2.76

DSG:
1st-3.46
2nd-2.05
3rd-1.30
4th-0.90
5th-0.91
6th-0.76
Reverse-3.99
Final I-4.12
Final II-3.04
 

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Hello,
There was a question below regarding the sunvisor and if they slid out.

My 2011 TDI Highline has the slide out sunvisor.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you, post edited. Do both the driver's and passenger side slide out?

Feel free to post some pics of your car, you would be among the first with the 2011 TDI!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Added the transmission gear ratios for the 2011. They are the exact same, both manual and DSG, as the gear ratios for the older body style 2010.
 

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Added 2012 notes and pics of the spring spacers, pic mirrored w/permission from lowassveedub. It looks like dealers are still leaving them in place. Since you paid for pre delivery checklist, they should at least do the items on the checklist.

Since it's been a while since the cars have come out, the buying guide has also gotten a top-bottom editing.
 

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2011 + Jetta sedans no longer come with a valet key. Most people don't even use the metal key anyways because it's hidden under a cover on the door.

The disadvantage is that there's now way to secure the glovebox. There used to be locks to prevent trunk access, these were also removed for 2011.
 

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Posted edited for clarity, your Sportwagen is a different model despite it being called Jetta. This guide is for the Jetta sedan. I will include your note in the Sportwagen buying guide.
 

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Warning: If you get the RNS315 GPS system, it does not come with HD radio even though the RNS 510 GPS and RCD 510 radio do come with HD radio. In other words, the RNS315 removes the HD radio feature. This is not clear on VW's site. If you read the RNS315 FAQ article on this website, the comparison chart does show that the 315 doesn't have HD radio.
 

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2011 + Jetta sedans no longer come with a valet key. Most people don't even use the metal key anyways because it's hidden under a cover on the door.

The disadvantage is that there's now way to secure the glovebox. There used to be locks to prevent trunk access, these were also removed for 2011.
My 2012 Jetta TDi sedan has a lockable glove-box and uses the standard flip-out key to do the job.
 
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