Volkswagen of America wants its Jetta replacement to bring back VW's reputation for "affordable German engineering," says Len Hunt, vice president in charge of the Volkswagen brand in North America.
But that means charging a premium price, Hunt says. He says the Jetta will be priced against bigger vehicles than its previous competition. It had competed against cars such as the Honda Civic and Toyota Corolla.
The new Jetta is 7 inches longer than the previous model and is aimed at the mid-sized Honda Accord and Toyota Camry.
It will be what Hunt calls a "premium compact," still slightly smaller than mid-sized vehicles such as the Accord and Camry while approaching their pricing. The new Jetta's base price is $18,515, including destination. The base Camry, for example, begins at $18,735, including destination.
VW's coming products in the United States will follow Jetta's positioning. Hunt says that pricey vehicles such as the Phaeton sedan and Touareg SUV muddied VW's image of affordability in the United States.