Slip into the Jetta's cabin and you are greeted by a typical VW layout. The door shuts with a positive thud suggesting a solid build.
The quality of materials used is excellent and that alone instantly makes the cabin feel premium. The combination of black, beige and faux wood adds to the richness but the dashboard design is bland.
The TSI comes only in Trendline and Comfortline trim levels meaning that there is no touchscreen and in its place you get a rather cheap looking audio system sans USB, but the sound quality is excellent. The Jetta TSI is poorly equipped and you have to make do without the climate control which was sorely missed during our test.
The upside of the lack of equipment is the loss of weight that directly reflects on the performance of the car, which we'll come to in the third posting.
The steering is wrapped in soft leather and has controls for the audio and the instrument panel display. The display provides assorted information like trip meter, service due, traveling hours, range, real-time fuel economy as well as instantaneous fuel economy, temperature, etc.
There are two cup holders beside the handbrake lever and a useful storage compartment between the front seats; the door pockets can swallow a one litre water bottle.
The switch gears are tactile and operate with a positive feel. Everything inside the cabin is thoughtfully laid out. I especially liked the damped opening of the illuminated glove compartment.
The nicely contoured front seats are very comfortable and come with height adjustment, the driver gets to adjust lumbar support. VW could’ve provided electric controls at least for the driver seats as the customers in this segment come to expect them nowadays.
Coming to the rear, the seats are supportive and the seat back has just the right amount of inclination. The legroom is ample although the rear AC vents and centre tunnel make it strictly a four seater. The rear vents don’t have individual control for the blower speed.
The seat squab is a wee bit short on thigh support and the cushion is bit on the firmer side. Nevertheless the overall seat comfort is very good and the leather upholstery gives an airy feel.
In short, the grandeur of the VW Jetta’s cabin comes not from the design and layout, but from the quality of materials, fit and finish.