Volkswagen Jetta

31,011 miles 38 observed mpg

An extra-cold winter left us grateful for fast-heating seats, especially since the Jetta's dlesel takes a while to provide warm air from the heater on frigid mornings. Highways have been the preferred habitat for this German sedan, where even a diminutive 14.5-gallon tank delivers 500-mile Intervals between fuel stops. Around town, a few drivers, Phillips being the most vitriolic, have complained about relaxed throttle tip-In when pulling away from a stop. Mechanically, the Jetta has been flawless despite two unscheduled stops for unexplained electronic demons.

—Michael Austin

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