Home Fun StuffAutomotive 2014 Volkswagen Jetta vs 2006 Volkswagen Jetta

2014 Volkswagen Jetta vs 2006 Volkswagen Jetta

by TerriAnn
2014 Volkswagen Jetta vs 2006 Volkswagen Jetta #Cars

“What’s with this comparison?” you might wonder. Well, my family actually owns a 2006 Volkswagen Jetta. Frans and I bought it new, soon after we moved back to the States from the Netherlands. It’s been a wonderful car and it’s still going strong. In fact, it’s in such good condition that people are often surprised that it’s eight years old already. So how does our faithful Jetta compare with the latest and greatest model?

2014 Volkswagen Jetta vs 2006 Volkswagen Jetta #Cars
One-week vehicle loan was provided for review purposes. All opinions are my own.

Comparing the 2014 Volkswagen Jetta and the 2006 Volkswagen Jetta

The interior of the cars were pretty much the same. Some of the knobs and buttons were switched to plastic, which was a nice move because the knobs on our sound system are cracked and the paint on the buttons for our electric windows is wearing off. The 2014 Jetta has a two-toned leatherette interior but whether that’s an improvement or just different is up to personal taste.

The feel of the seats and the dimensions in the front and back seemed pretty similar. That’s a good thing as our Jetta is good hip, head, and leg room all-around. One of the things we’re most proud of in our car is the huge trunk. What’s crazy is that the 2014 actually has more room in it. How in the world is it possible when it looks so deceivingly average from the outside?!

2014 Volkswagen Jetta vs 2006 Volkswagen Jetta #Cars

Features that weren’t available for back in the day came standard on this SEL model with an MSRP of $25,590. The heated front seats, Bluetooth connectivity, keyless start (which is in the middle console area), and backup camera were definitely welcome.

The only issue that seemed kind of “off” was the touchscreen navigation system. The screen was so itty-bitty little that it didn’t really make sense being there. Plus, it was low resolution so it was practically impossible to make out what the map was trying to show. It would have been better off as a digital screen for the stereo only if it was going to be that size. I’d love to see this improved in future models.

2014 Volkswagen Jetta vs 2006 Volkswagen Jetta #Cars

Excellent MPG but Numb Steering

Our 2006 Volkswagen Jetta has heavy steering and a powerful 2.5L engine (it can handle San Francisco hills with ease). So, you really feel in control as you drive. The 2014 VW Jetta has about almost as much power but uses a lot less gas. The 1.8L engine is turbo-charged so less gas is needed to push the engine to perform. I can’t tell you the exact difference in MPG (miles per gallon) because the way of measuring fuel economy has changed. I can tell you that the 2014 Jetta gets an average of 29 MPG and it has a 7 out of 10 smog rating – both stellar numbers!

The handling is lacking though. Usually, I can tell if the steering is heavy, light, or just right in the matter of minutes. With the 2014, I just can’t tell at all. In the motoring world, the steering could be described as “numb.” According to one journalist I spoke with (I forgot her name and didn’t get a business card), it come from the idea of going back and forth, pressing the acceleration and brake pedals, but can’t don’t feel anything in your leg. That’s what it’s like. You move the steering wheel and the car turns, but it feels like you haven’t even touched it. It’s so weird to experience and I find it extremely difficult to describe the sensation.

Side-by-Side Comparison

Putting the cars side by side to see how they compare on the outside seemed like a great idea. That is, until, we actually did it . . .

2014 Volkswagen Jetta vs 2006 Volkswagen Jetta #Cars

2014 Volkswagen Jetta vs 2006 Volkswagen Jetta #Cars

On the outside, our 2006 model (the white one) still wins in the “looks” department. It’s so sad that the designers changed the newer body style so that it actually looks older than its predecessor. The 2014 model just has no character with boxy lines and a boring nose and trunk.

Buying the 2014 Volkswagen Jetta

The 2014 Volkswagen Jetta is still a great car. The gas mileage is better and the sticker price is less than the 2006 Volkswagen Jetta we have. From experience, we know how dependable the Jetta is and how low maintenance it is. We would buy another Volkswagen in a heartbeat but, until they modernize the style, we’ll likely lean toward other models.

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Liz Mays July 23, 2014 - 8:08 am

I think that steering would be tough for me because I have this weird set-up left over from my dad which makes my steering fingertouch sensitive. It’s kinda freaky! The Jetta is still a nice car though.

Jenn July 23, 2014 - 2:22 pm

I agree with you, the newer model changes make it look older.

Raijean July 24, 2014 - 12:05 am

My grandmother loves the Jetta, she has the new one and it’s pretty dope.

Ty July 24, 2014 - 4:33 pm

My best friend Carly has a Jetta and she loves it!

Angela July 24, 2014 - 5:52 pm

The Jetta looks like a great little car. I always wanted a Volkswagen van and still do. 🙂

Tammy Litke (@threedifferent) July 24, 2014 - 9:39 pm

My husband drives a 2001 VW Jetta with the turbo boost. He LOVES his Jetta fiercely, lol. And I agree that trunk is HUGE. We just took an impromptu IKEA shopping trip today to get some stuff for our daughter’s dorm and everything fit in the Jetta’s trunk without a hitch. I’m betting he’d love to take a new Jetta out for a spin 😉

Kelsey APley July 26, 2014 - 3:08 pm

I think these look so nice! I love love love the interior, it looks really nice and fancy! Looks like they did quite a bit of an upgrade!

Tara July 26, 2014 - 6:10 pm

I had a 2006 Jetta too. Just sold it in the fall though. I also like the older body style, the new look makes it look like the VW passat or a honda, not as distinguishable

Colleen July 26, 2014 - 6:48 pm

I’ve never driven a Jetta but I love that yours is eight years old and still going strong.

Kathy July 27, 2014 - 10:33 am

I also had a Jetta that I loved! I am sure that I will go back to it someday. I agree with you on the look of the new Jetta. I think the older model looks more modern.

Kathleen July 27, 2014 - 8:15 pm

That trunk space is amazing, but the navigation system would be a no go for me. As much as we do road trips, I have to have a great navigation system.

Robin (Masshole Mommy) July 28, 2014 - 2:47 am

I have heard such great things about VW’s, but I have never had a chance to ever drive one. When it’s time for a new car, I might take one for a test drive.

Lindsey @ Redhead Baby Mama July 28, 2014 - 4:34 am

I used to own a Passat (sister to the Jetta) and I LOVED that car. It was one of the best vehicles I ever owned, but the upkeep of the german parts and labor was killer. I wish I still had it!

Kay Adeola July 28, 2014 - 4:40 am

Not seen this model over here but I think the older model looks much better.

Rosey July 28, 2014 - 8:08 am

I like the two-tone interior. The Jetta is nice looking, and I’d test drive it…though I would notice a small, low-resolution GPS too. It does sound like the pros outweighed the cons.

Debbie Denny July 28, 2014 - 8:38 am

Both are very nice cars. Love the interior and features.

Amanda Her July 28, 2014 - 8:53 am

You are so right on the side-by-side comparison. I like the look of the white car much better.

Mitch July 28, 2014 - 9:50 am

I know technology has increased and everyone has to better their cars, but Volkswagens have a sterling reputation for lasting a very, very long time. Friends of mine who have had them from decades ago spent far less than my family did on repairs and new cars!

Alesha @ Full Time Mama July 28, 2014 - 11:04 am

I’m with you- the older model looks better. And based on your comparison, it sounds like buying a used 2006 would be the better choice for those looking to spend less money and still get a great car. Sometimes gently used is the way to go!

aimee fauci July 28, 2014 - 12:38 pm

I’ve never driven a Jetta.. It looks zippy. We drive trucks and before that drove SUV’s since we have so many kids.

Jaime July 28, 2014 - 12:44 pm

I have a couple of friends who own (or have owned) a Jetta. I love your side-by-side comparison.

Betsy Mitchell July 28, 2014 - 12:49 pm

The bodies dont look to much different from each other. Great side by side comparison.

deb July 28, 2014 - 1:53 pm

I think heated front seats will always be my favorite feature on a car. Thanks for sharing the comparison between the two.

Janel (A Mom's Take) July 28, 2014 - 2:57 pm

It’s amazing how both cars actually look like new models. The Jettas age well. I like the features a lot in the 2014 model. I never owned a Jetta but I did own a 69 Beetle. It was my first car. Anything in the world has better steering than that thing did, but it was cute and bright yellow.

Mandi (Moments With Mandi) July 28, 2014 - 3:25 pm

This is neat to see how things have changed. The 2014 exterior is inferior to the 2006 though. I agree that it looks “older”.

Carly from The Puzzled Palate July 28, 2014 - 4:03 pm

Wow- all of that legroom is awesome! I love the paint color- I know that is a silly comment, but I really do!

Jessica July 28, 2014 - 4:08 pm

I think it’s like that with a lot of newer cars. The older style “look” seems to be coming back, but I just don’t understand it. The features are much better, though!

Debbie L. July 28, 2014 - 4:15 pm

I have never ridden in a Jetta – I need to go for a test drive. Looks like a very nice car! I agree with the 2006 looking better – I was told they change the designs for safety reasons.

Barbie's Beauty Bits July 28, 2014 - 4:36 pm

I’m a big Volkswagon fan. I’ve had a Jetta and a few Beetles over the years, I’ve always been a big leaser. Currently I’m driving a red beetle and love the car!

Rachael July 28, 2014 - 4:49 pm

I’d love to own a Jetta. I’m gonna drive my paid for car into the ground. Then I’ll probably by a Jetta or some other VW vehicle.

Beth@FrugalFroggie July 28, 2014 - 6:39 pm

I like the body style of the 2006 as well. But I saw a Tesla today that had similar back lights so maybe this is a trend.

Theresa July 28, 2014 - 7:40 pm

Side by side, I would have guess that the white one was the newer model, which I think I like much better! I think the steering would throw me off as well. I still think that the Jetta is a great car though!

Donna July 28, 2014 - 8:29 pm

My neighbor across the street has a VW Jetta and I’ve been admiring it.

veronica July 28, 2014 - 9:14 pm

send me one of those cute cars. I love VW’s very cool

Shannon Gosney July 28, 2014 - 9:31 pm

That is a gorgeous car! I would love to test drive the 2014 Jetta!

Camesha July 28, 2014 - 10:40 pm

I know so many people who swear by the Jetta. I have heard nothing but good things about this car. This one sounds really cool!

Carly Brydon July 28, 2014 - 10:44 pm

I have to say that I am shocked that your Jetta was the white one… the 2014 Jetta definitely looks like an older model. They both look and sound like great cars, though!

Jenny July 29, 2014 - 5:33 am

it looks like an awesome car 🙂 and cozy. and shiny. i can’t wait till my nieces are in school full time so i can get my license.

Danielle @ We Have It All July 29, 2014 - 6:17 am

It’s great to see this comparison. I agree about the style of the newer one. And I do know what you mean about the numb steering. I have driving a handful of new cars and I really think that’s how they all are.

Melinda July 29, 2014 - 6:57 am

thats a good looking interior. my sister has owned lots of VWs

Becka July 29, 2014 - 8:09 am

The Jettas are great cars but I agree I like the older body style more. Great review

Lori July 29, 2014 - 8:23 am

I agree, the older model is more attractive. Maybe with enough feedback, they will change it for the next year’s release.

StacieinAtlanta July 29, 2014 - 10:04 am

At one point I had a Jetta and my husband had a Passat. I remember them as both being fun cars. It was cool to see the comparison of old vs new.

Cassie @ Southeast by Midwest July 29, 2014 - 10:58 am

That is such an awesome looking car. I’m loving the trunk!

Christie July 29, 2014 - 11:59 am

I’ve been thinking about a Jetta for my next car. Thanks for the insight!

Marina @ Mommy Snippets July 29, 2014 - 1:10 pm

Oh, I’m really like that Jetta! What a beautiful car!

Ann Bacciaglia July 29, 2014 - 2:35 pm

I agree. The older Jetta looks much better then the new one. Thanks for the comparison. It is very interesting to see how a car model has changed in 8 years.

Brett July 29, 2014 - 7:02 pm

These models look great! My friend loves their Volkswagen Jetta.

Racquel July 31, 2014 - 12:25 pm

What a great looking car. I’ve never known anyone disappointed with a VW!

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