A nearly perfect example of proper German engineering, the Jetta has been an important part of the Volkswagen lineup for more than 40 years. Even as crossovers continue to gain in popularity, almost one third of VW’s U.S. sales comes from sedans, and most of those are Jetta sales. Completely redesigned a few years back, the Jetta and its high-performance GLI variant get a mid-cycle update for the 2022 model year. With freshened styling inside and out, more standard safety gear and a power upgrade, the 2022 Volkswagen Jetta should easily continue as one of the brand’s best-sellers.
2022 Volkswagen Jetta Mid-Cycle Update
“As the best-selling VW for more than 30 years, Jetta has proven to be a compelling value,” said Hein Schafer, senior vice president for product marketing and strategy at Volkswagen. “This refresh takes the strengths of the current generation . . . and builds on them with a fresh design, better technology, and more access to the driver assistance features buyers are looking for,” Schafer observed. With the introduction of a new Sport trim, it is easier than ever for customers to get their hands on a vehicle with a sporty appearance at a value oriented price point,” the VP also noted.
Changes to the 2022 Volkswagen Jetta’s exterior are subtle yet still significant. Up front, the grille and front bumper are new while headlights and daytime running lights are standard LED.
The Jetta’s rear bumper is also new, and the stylish LED taillights are standard. The bumper also incorporates a dual sport exhaust on the Jetta GLI.
All trims of the VW Jetta are now available with aluminum alloy wheel options, ranging up to 18 inches on the top-level trims. Jetta GLI has 18-inch wheels standard, with black wheels available as part of a Black Package.
After this mid-cycle refresh of the 2022 Volkswagen Jetta, the popular sedan’s interior remains primarily unchanged; however, it does get pumped up a bit with contrasting stitching on center console, door armrests and shifter. Cloth seats get a new design, while both leather and leatherette seat trim are available. For the new model year, the 8-inch VW digital cockpit is now standard equipment on all Jetta trim levels.
Inside the GLI
To match its sporty performance, the 2022 Volkswagen Jetta GLI comes with perforated leather-trimmed sport seats with red underlay. The GLI also gets stainless steel pedal caps as well as a new steering wheel with touch controls. The 10-inch digital cockpit display is standard equipment on the GLI, as are heated / ventilated front seats, a Beats Audio premium sound system and 10-color ambient lighting.
Under the Hood
The latest version of Volkswagen’s 1.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine powers the 2022 Volkswagen Jetta, now making 158 horsepower and 184 lb-ft of torque — an 11-horsepower increase over the previous version. We’re pleased that Volkswagen will continue to offer Jetta with a 6-speed manual gearbox, with the option of an 8-speed automatic as well.
New Sport Trim
Volkswagen offers the Jetta in four trims (plus the GLI) — S, SE, SEL and the new Sport trim, which slots between the S and SE. The new Sport trim is designed for enthusiast drivers seeking good value, standing out from the base S with dark graphite 17-inch alloy wheels; an XDS electronic locking differential; a blacked-out grille, mirror caps and window trim; a black headliner; and unique cloth-trimmed sport seats.
The sportier Jetta GLI continues with a 2.0-liter turbocharged engine that produces 228 horsepower and 258 lb-ft of torque, teamed with either the standard 6-speed manual or 7-speed dual-clutch gearbox. Power gets managed via an electronically controlled torque-sensing limited-slip differential that works with the adaptive damping system for improved traction. GLI now comes as a single Autobahn trim, along with the option of a Black Package that includes a black roof, black mirror caps, a black spoiler and 18-inch black alloy wheels.
The 2022 Volkswagen Jetta comes with the latest advanced driver-assistance technology in a package called IQ.Drive. Every Jetta now has forward collision warning with autonomous braking and pedestrian detection, an active blind-spot monitor and rear cross-traffic alert. Also available is lane-keeping assist, adaptive cruise control with stop and go, and emergency assist (semi-automated vehicle assistance in a medical emergency).
The updated 2022 Volkswagen Jetta and Jetta GLI are expected to begin arriving in showrooms before the end of this year. Pricing will be announced soon; however, we don’t anticipate major pricing changes after the current model year.