Volkswagen Infuses More GTI Magic and Golf R DNA Into 2019 Jetta GLI [Live Pics]

Volkswagen has alot riding on the current generation Jetta. While the newly updated Jetta brings a lot of good things to the iconic compact, the one thing that felt missing here was the absence of the range topping GLI variant. Volkswagen has taken note of this absence, and has formally unveiled the 2019 Jetta GLI at the 2019 Chicago Auto Show. The exterior styling of the 2019 Jetta GLI follows the same motif as other iterations of the GLI, with the suit of clothes largely being shared with the standard Jetta. However, the honeycomb grille is a dead giveaway of the performance underneath, as well as the trademark red stripe in the grille which has been a hallmark of the GLI for the bulk of its production run. Eighteen-inch wheels are standard issue, with attractive looking brake calipers peeking out from under them. More aggressive front and rear bumpers are …

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Ford and Volkswagen Announce Global Alliance, Will Not Involve Cross Ownership

In a landmark announcement that is currently breaking as we speak, Ford and Volkswagen have agreed to a global alliance that aims to enhance capabilities for both companies, while also enhancing overall levels of scale at the same time in a period where more and more unlikely alliances are being formed to combat the increasing levels of cost and engineering involved in producing vehicles for a new generation of buyers. Ford and Volkswagen also revealed that the two are exploring joint development of mobility services, EV and autonomous vehicles with this particular move designed to help save both companies billions of dollars in development costs. Volkswagen in particular (which is still recovering from the lingering effects of dieselgate) would benefit from the alliance, because it would have a reduced financial burden on costs relating to electric and autonomous vehicle development, and implementing some of the technologies developed by Ford can …

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2017 VW E-Golf SEL Premium – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

OK, we’re a little late to the EV game. We recently tested the Soul EV, and came away charmed by the unique driving experience, and the way Kia made the electric Soul feel special and unique – like driving a car of the future. Which is a great counterpoint to the VW Golf EV. While the Kia celebrates its EV-ness, the Golf plays it the other way – it completely feels like any other Golf, the only difference is that it has a different way of fueling up. For someone with EV anxiety, or who just wants to go electric with a minimum of fuss, it’s an easy way. But as we found out, it has surprises in store for the driver. Looks like…. a Golf Well, no problem here. The handsome, 5-door hatch has European sensibility written all over it. It’s a conservative design that’s aged well. It plays …

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2019 VW Jetta SE – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

We recently tested the 2018 VW Passat GT, an exciting twist on one of the carmaker’s oldest models. And now, we have the 2019 VW Jetta, its newest model. And make no mistake about it, a new Jetta is a big deal. It’s the most successful European nameplate in the US, with 3.2 million sold since 1980. And, that’s just a drop in the bucket – worldwide sales are over 17.5 million. Now we have the seventh-generation of the popular sedan, and VW has pushed the envelope to give us a bigger, better, more advanced sedan to continue to woo today’s sedan buyer. How much bigger is the big deal? Noticeably. Built on VW’s MQB platform that’s shared with a lion’s share of the lineup, the new Jetta rides on a 1.3-inch longer wheelbase, and sits 1.7 –inches longer, 0.8 inches wider, and 0.2 inches taller. While those numbers are …

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2019 VW Passat GT V6 – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

It seems like the de-facto performance engine for reasonably priced cars these days is the 2.0-liter, turbo, 4-cylinder. From Audi A4, BMW 3, to Honda Accord and Kia Optima, the moderately-sized, turbo motor strikes as the perfect combination of power and economy. But what about 6-cylinders? For a long time the 6 was the engine, that sweet spot between big muscular V8’s and wheezy fours. Now, it’s a premium item – out of the reach of most buyers – especially if you want that engine wrapped in some sexy European sheet metal. VW to the rescue Yes, the brand that owns affordable Euro performance. And they did the driving enthusiast a solid – giving us a handsome 4-door sedan with a powerful V6 and some other goodies, and… wait for it, brought it in under $30,000. Enter the Passat GT. Flying under the Radar The Passat is not the newest …

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2018 VW Golf Alltrack – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Everyone seems to want a crossover or SUV. You’d think this would be bad news for makers of wagons like the 2018 VW Golf Alltrack, but just the opposite is true. A lot of people like the added utility of ‘utes, but prefer a car-like experience. Or something in-between. Audi probably should get the nod for the original Allroad creating the premium upscale “tall wagon”. And you can thank the Subaru Outback for putting this type of vehicle in just about every neighborhood in the country. Especially where it snows. Let’s get rugged! VW sells it shares of SUV/Utes as well, and has often had small wagons (Jetta and now Golf) in the inventory, so it seemed natural to catch the trend and bump it up a little taller, butch it up a little more, and Voila! Golf Alltrack wagon. (or wagen if you prefer). About a year ago, we …

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2017 VW Passat 1.8T – Road Test Review – By Tim Esterdahl

Review: 2017 VW Passat – 5 Things We Loved About It Volkswagen gets a lot of grief from people due to the diesel-emissions scandal and narrow views of them being only a diesel-engine focused company, but lost in this hatred is the fact they do build some pretty great non-diesel cars. For example, a week behind the wheel of the 2017 VW Passat reveals it is pretty dang good with lots of smart engineering. Here is what we loved about it. Before we get to the things we loved, we should back up and say our test model was a SE model with the technology package. This is middle of the road trim and the technology package gave us a slew of safety features like a rearview camera, adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitor, etc… What’s most interesting about the car is how it didn’t impress us at first. For …

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2018 VW Atlas V6 SEL Premium w/ 4Motion – Road Test Review + Video

A recent comment on our amazing VW Atlas youtube drive review has really stuck in my craw. “Atlas is not a Tahoe competitor,” they say. “Atlas competes with Pilot and Highlander, dude,” is the refrain. And I used to agree with these guys. On paper, Atlas with its seating for 8 and pricing from $30k, might seem like a natural rival to car-based midsize crossovers.  It even runs a standard turbo four and front-wheel drive, after all!  (Same for new Q7 on the turbo four…) But Atlas is so much more than a proper three-row rival to Explorer and Durango. Literally! Atlas is huge.  Experience it in person before saying this is no Tahoe rival! That’s exactly what we did.  Foot on the floor, as usual, and loving that trademark VR6 growl up the rev range. Kick things off with a few minutes of this drive review. Features drone cams, …

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2018 Volkswagen Atlas V6 4Motion – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

If you go by sales, VW SUVs have always been the scrawny kid on the beach getting sand kicked in his face. But, as if answering one of those mail-order bodybuilding courses, a new, big, powerful and buff VW Atlas is giving those other bullies a roundhouse to the jaw, and claiming its rightful place in the sun. Behold: the VW Atlas. Or as we named out tester, Charles Atlas. If you don’t remember Charles Atlas, you can still appreciate that the U.S. is big SUV country, and up until now VW hasn’t really courted the buyer who needs three rows of seats and 7 passenger capacity. We recently tested the all new Tiguan – much larger than the model it replaces, but that 3rd row was smallish, and best for kids. It’s a perfect vehicle to compete with the other occasional 3-rowers, and an impressive new product. But there’s …

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