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2014 Volkswagen Jetta to swap inline-five for new turbo fourby Nat Shirley
The new mill should give the Jetta a fuel economy boost.
While indisputably a step up from the archaic entry-level 2.0L eight-valve four-cylinder, the Jetta's 2.5L inline-five is getting in on years, too. It's long been known that the five-banger would eventually be replaced in the U.S.-market Jetta by a turbocharged 1.8L four-cylinder, and now we know just when the change will occur.
Volkswagen has that the Jetta will get the 1.8L for the 2014 model year. Already available under the hood of several VW models in Europe, the engine produces 158 horsepower and 185 lb-ft of torque. Those figures are comparable to the 170 ponies and 177 lb-ft of twist produced by the larger five-cylinder, but the new engine is also expected to return improved fuel economy.
The 1.8L is a derivative of the ubiquitous turbocharged 2.0L found in numerous VW Group models. Because of that relationship, the 1.8L can be built in the same factories and maintained with the same equipment, saving Volkswagen time and money. It's expected that the new motor will eventually replace the inline-five in the Passat, Beetle and Golf.
The 2014 Jetta will also adopt an electric power steering system. Interestingly, VW says that the mechanical revisions needed to accommodate the new steering system and engine should allow it to tune the Jetta's suspension to be slightly sportier than that of the current model.
The news comes on the heels of VW's announcement that the Jetta will get a richer interior and more standard features for 2013.
Photos by Andrew Ganz