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2019 VW Jetta First Drive:  Jetta Haus Party Chicago

Friday May 11 (Chicago):  VW rolls out the 2019 Jetta this weekend at Jetta Haus Parties in Chicago and Miami.  Next week, you’ll find Jetta parties in New York City and Los Angeles.  Chicago’s event, at ZHOU B Art Center, let’s you experience the turbo engine’s sound and fury in a blast room decorated with blue streamers—a vertical version of an air conditioner demo.  Press the start button and you’ll be blown away in ribbons of azure linguini.  Don’t want a bad hair day?  No problem.  Check out the groovy ambient interior lighting; it's psychedelic fun.  Totally “That 70s Show” psychedelic fun.

The Jetta?  VW supplied your reviewer with three models:  S, R-Line and SEL Premium—all with 147-hp 1.4-liter turbocharged engines and eight-speed automatics.  First impression, they’re very good with soft dash pad and much improved HVAC switchgear.  Steering behavior is proper.  Ride is relatively soft on the S, firmer on the R-Line.  The transmission, like a card shark, shuffles gears.  While there’s eco-mined engine thrumming, the gearbox downshifts quickly.  Sport mode lets the engine rev higher.  Each vehicle exhibited newfound quietness.  Instrument brightness (‘analogue’ or digital) was a sight for sore eyes—automatically adjusted for the tunnel near White Sox park.  

Creature comforts include heated and ventilated front seat, which took the bite out of the Windy City’s brisk weather.  A velvety engine start/stop system reduces idling emissions.  Comfort, class, and cost ($20,000 for starters to $28,000 well equipped), make the Jetta attractive to your senses and your cent-saving sensibilities.  Drivers, lower the seat; put on your party hats.  The better Jetta is here!

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The VWCA (Volkswagen Club of America) is a not-for-profit hobby club for owners and enthusiasts of Volkswagen and Audi automobiles. Founded in 1955, the Club has followed the evolution of Volkswagen from the early air-cooled Beetle to the latest models to roll off the assembly line. We are not owned by, affiliated with or sponsored by Volkswagen AG or Volkswagen of America, the Importer. The Club is operated and managed solely by volunteer members who contribute their time and energy in pursuit of our motto, "to help Volkswagen and Audi owners enjoy their cars to the fullest." Read about the club's history.

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