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The new for 2011 Volkswagen Jetta received a new, far lower base price tag of $15,995, but Consumer Reports evidently feels that the more affordable sticker has come at too high of a cost to the vehicle itself. The buyer-centric organization ranked the Jetta dead last among 11 small sedans tested for the April edition of its magazine.

David Champion, senior director of the group's Auto Test Center says, "In an effort to bring the car's starting price down, VW cheapened the previous Jetta's interior and suspension, making it less sophisticated and compromising handling."

CR isn't pulling any punches while describing why the sedan fares so poorly, calling it "a shadow of the agile, well-finished car it once was." Ouch. Specifically, the VW was dinged hard for sub-par handling and cornering grip, poor interior fit and finish and its coarse-sounding 2.5-liter, five-cylinder. In addition, CR came away disappointed with long brake distances and a six-speed automatic that is reluctant to downshifting.

We're thinking VW may not like CR's take on the Jetta, but at least the automaker can point to increased sales as the reason the automaker decided to remove so much of what made the Jetta so popular with enthusiasts.

Other vehicles tested were the Chevrolet Cruze in both LS and LT trims and the Hyundai Elantra. The Cruze models are now rated at the middle of CR's small sedan pack, with a Very Good overall score. The Elantra came away with laurels for the being the best small sedan in its class, and the Hyundai was the only small sedan among the latest four tested to be given CR's official Recommendation. Hit the jump to read over CR's press release.



Gallery: 2011 Volkswagen Jetta: First Drive



[Source: Consumer Reports]Continue reading Volkswagen Jetta ranked last among small sedans by Consumer Reports

Volkswagen Jetta ranked last among small sedans by Consumer Reports originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 05 Apr 2011http://www.autoblog.com/2011/04/05/volkswagen-jetta-ranked-last-among-small-sedans-by-consumer-r/
 

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I qquit worrying about Consumer Report when one year they based their ratings on cup holders and where they were located...jaw drops
 

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I qquit worrying about Consumer Report when one year they based their ratings on cup holders and where they were located...jaw drops
Whatever, tell me who you can trust to provide a good review of a car, from a reliability, performance, and usability standpoint? That last section covers cup holders, if you ever owned a Miata you would know how useless they can be - let alone how annoying they can be if positioned wrong.
 

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To put this into context (and I'm supporting their view) - if the 2011 JSW TDI had been HALF as cheapened and decontented over the last year as the sedan was, I'd have bought something else. Even a Volvo or Saab wagon, or, most likely, a Subaru Legacy!

They really messed with the sedan. It now ranks deservedly last, and carries a commensurate low price. A conscious decision by VW to go downmarket in an effort to regain volume, which appears to have succeeded.

That's my take on it.
 

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I think VW basically cheapen down the car, using less expensive trim, less styling, a lot less
of a lot of things. For example the rear I beam suspension and doing away with the independent suspension.

The Jetta has been "downgraded" to compete with the Fords, Chevy's and Nissans..
I think they made a big mistake doing what they did to it, the front end is hideous and the car blends right in with others...it's no longer something different on the road.

I had a choice when I bought my 2010 as there were a few 2011's on the lot the day I purchased.
I saw one, looked and though...? it doesn't look like a VW to me.

It's just sheet metal...right? Now it'll be harder to tell who's copying who's styling.

Yes I have heard the arguments...you pay more for a VW....well you were getting more.......not now though.
 
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