Like many auto manufacturers, Volkswagen is focused on SUVs, crossovers, and EVs, but that doesn’t mean the company is ditching the sedan. Not at all, VW is committed to the production of great sedans, and since 1980, the Jetta has been and is still a major player in the VW lineup. Offered as an affordable German performance sedan, the 2023 VW Jetta GLI in Albuquerque NM is an excellent high-performance option. Based on the regular Jetta, the GLI has a beefier engine and more refined handling making it quicker and more enjoyable to drive. Apart from performance, the new Jetta GLI will surely entice drivers with its roomy interior and sleek exterior.
Volkswagen gave the Jetta a significant refresh for 2022, with updates inside and out, so we don’t expect many alterations for the 2023 model. Some changes you’ll notice from the makeover are a more prominent upper and lower grille in a new honeycomb pattern with the signature GLI red accent running its length and a more aggressive front bumper. The rear end sports a new honeycomb diffuser with larger-diameter chrome dual exhaust pipes with better acoustics for a louder sound (particularly when driving in Sport mode). New five-spoke 18-inch alloy wheels offer a sporty look, while blacked-out wheels are available with the Black Package.
Upgrades to the interior are minor but enhance the stylish look of the GLI. These refinements include a new red-tinted seat design, with a red lining beneath the perforated black leather upholstery and red contrast stitching along the seams. A newly-designed leather-wrapped steering wheel with touch-sensitive controls and a new gear shifter, both accented with the red contrast stitching, round out the improvements. We want to point out that the American version of the GLI has retained the 6-speed manual gearbox, which is increasingly rare in new cars. A 7-speed dual-clutch automatic is also available for a bump-up in price.
With crisp uninterrupted lines and a straightforward, modern design, the tailored interior will have you feeling like you’re in a much pricier Audi vehicle. The touchscreen is integrated into the dashboard at an angle, which gives the driver easy access to the display and physical controls. And as for spaciousness, the Jetta GLI has a surprising amount of both passenger room and cargo space, especially when compared to other compact sedans in its segment.
VW’s new 10.25-inch digital gauge cluster is standard, and with it comes the MIB3 interface and an 8-inch touchscreen. This system includes wireless Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, navigation, satellite radio, and loads of illuminated USB-C ports you can find at night. And because the high-end Autobahn trim is the only GLI that is offered, a plethora of other top features are also included. Both front seats are heated and ventilated, with the driver enjoying an 8-way power-adjustable seat linked to a memory system. A 10-color ambient lighting system, auto-dimming rearview mirror, wireless phone charging, and a power panoramic tilt-and-slide sunroof are just a sampling of all the amenities you’ll appreciate. But wait, did we mention a BeatsAudio system with a 12-channel, 400-watt amplifier with eight speakers and a subwoofer? Yeah, that too! Expect all the top safety and driver-assist features in the GLI as well.
The whole point of a GLI is high-performance in a compact sedan, so if you want to push the speed limit in a responsive car, the 2023 Jetta GLI in Albuquerque, NM is one of your best options. Rather than the basic 1.5-liter turbocharged engine in the Jetta, the GLI gives drivers a more powerful 2.0-liter turbocharged direct-injection 4-cylinder TSI® engine. You’ll love the 228 horsepower and impressive 258 lb-ft of torque sent to the front wheels, with peak torque available at only 1500 RPMs (meaning you’ll get quick acceleration and thrilling performance).
The GLI makes it to 60 mph in just 5.6 seconds with the dual-clutch automatic, and the manual is only a fraction slower. Handling is a snap thanks to this model’s agility, and above 2,000 RPMs, there’s no turbo lag and outstanding throttle response.
If you’re the type who doesn’t want to drive a regular compact sedan and prefers something more capable, packs extra power, and is sporty-looking, the GLI is a solid choice. Visit Fiesta Volkswagen at 8201 Lomas Blvd NE in Albuquerque, New Mexico today, and test drive the Jetta GLI.