2011 Volkswagen
Jetta TDI
vs. 2012 Chevrolet
Cruze eco

2011 Volkswagen Jetta TDI

9.6

starting from

$24,865

Reasons to buy the Volkswagen Jetta TDI

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Good braking distance from 60mph
113 ft
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Fantastic range in the city
435 miles
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Fantastic range on the highway
609 miles
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Moon roof
Standard
2012 Chevrolet Cruze eco

9.2

starting from

$19,995

Reasons to buy the Chevrolet Cruze eco

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Safer for the driver in head-on collisions
5 stars
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Safer for the driver in side collisions
5 stars
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Average-sized front seats
52.7 ft3
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Safer for the front passenger in head-on collisions
5 stars
Luxury Features 10.0 vs 7.8
2011 Volkswagen Jetta TDI Winner: Jetta TDI
[details]
  • Enjoy additional natural light with the Jetta TDI's standard sun roof
Crash Test Ratings 8.6 vs 10.0
2012 Chevrolet Cruze eco Winner: Cruze eco
[details]
  • The Cruze eco has 2.1x less risk of serious injury, 5 stars vs 4 stars
  • The Cruze eco has 1.5x less risk of serious injury, 5 stars vs 4 stars
Road Tests 10.0 vs 9.0
2011 Volkswagen Jetta TDI Winner: Jetta TDI
[details]
  • The Jetta TDI needs around 20% less space to stop from 60mph, 113 ft vs 139 ft
  • Almost the same, 0.82 g vs 0.81 g
Cost 9.8 vs 10.0
2012 Chevrolet Cruze eco Winner: Cruze eco
[details]
  • The best price we've seen is $4,870 cheaper (around 20% less), $19,995 vs $24,865
Safety Features 10.0 vs -
Missing information
[details]
  • Child door locks come standard
Performance 10.0 vs -
Missing information
[details]
  • Both have an air compressor, quite rare for this class of vehicle
  • Neither has a good drivetrain for off-road or bad weather driving
  • Underpowered
Practicality 10.0 vs -
Missing information
[details]
  • Both can go pretty far on the highway on a single tank, however the Jetta TDI in particular gets exceptional range
  • Both have a rear seat that folds down for extra storage space
Entertainment System 10.0 vs -
Missing information
[details]
  • Neither offers an entertainment system
Overall 9.6 vs 9.2

Luxury Features

Volkswagen
Jetta TDI
2011 Volkswagen Jetta TDI
2012 Chevrolet Cruze eco Chevrolet
Cruze eco
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moon roof Standard vs Not Available Enjoy additional natural light with the Jetta TDI's standard sun roof
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power seats Not Available vs Not Available Neither has a power seat option
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keyless entry Standard vs Standard Both have keyless entry
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leather Not Available vs Not Available Neither offers a leather interior

Crash Test Ratings

Volkswagen
Jetta TDI
2011 Volkswagen Jetta TDI
2012 Chevrolet Cruze eco Chevrolet
Cruze eco
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Rollover resistance 4 stars vs 4 stars Poor protection, 10% to 20% chance of rolling over during emergency lane change
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Front driver crash test 4 stars vs 5 stars The better is 2.1x safer than the Jetta TDI
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Driver side crash test 4 stars vs 5 stars The better is 1.5x safer than the Jetta TDI

Road Tests

Volkswagen
Jetta TDI
2011 Volkswagen Jetta TDI
2012 Chevrolet Cruze eco Chevrolet
Cruze eco
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0-60 mph 8.3 seconds vs 7.8 seconds Neither car's 0-60 time is remarkable
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Braking distance at 60mph 113 ft vs 139 ft The Jetta TDI has above average braking ability, but the Cruze eco is quite bad
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1/4 mile 16.2 s @ 86 mph vs 16.1 s @ 87 mph Both have average 1/4 mile times for this class of vehicle
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Lateral acceleration 0.82 g vs 0.81 g The Jetta TDI has OK cornering abilities compared to the below average Cruze eco
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Top speed 130 mph vs 132 mph Both vehicles' top speed is just average

Cost

Volkswagen
Jetta TDI
2011 Volkswagen Jetta TDI
2012 Chevrolet Cruze eco Chevrolet
Cruze eco
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MSRP $24,865 vs $19,995 The Cruze eco has a great price and the Jetta TDI is pretty reasonable
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In-city gas mileage 30 mpg vs 28 mpg Both very efficient in the city
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basic warranty miles 36,000 mile vs 36,000 mile Shorter basic warranty
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basic warranty years 3 year vs 3 year Shorter-lasting basic warranty

Safety Features

Volkswagen
Jetta TDI
2011 Volkswagen Jetta TDI
2012 Chevrolet Cruze eco Chevrolet
Cruze eco
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antilock brakes Standard vs Standard Both come standard with ABS brakes
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Stability control system Yes vs Unknown
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Airbags 5 vs 6 The Cruze eco has a good number of airbags, but the Jetta TDI is just OK (missing Knee)
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Rear brakes Unknown vs Drum
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child door locks Standard vs Standard Child door locks come standard
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Roadside assistance system None vs OnStar

Performance

Volkswagen
Jetta TDI
2011 Volkswagen Jetta TDI
2012 Chevrolet Cruze eco Chevrolet
Cruze eco
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Horsepower 140 HP @ 4,000 RPM vs 138 HP @ 4,900 RPM Underpowered
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Number of gears 6 vs 6 Average number of gears
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Transmission Semi-automatic transmission vs Manual transmission Both the Jetta TDI's semi-automatic transmission and the Cruze eco's Manual transmission are unusual transmissions for this class of vehicle
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paddle shifters Not Available vs Unknown
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Air compressor Turbocharger vs Turbocharger Both have an air compressor, quite rare for this class of vehicle
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Power-to-weight ratio 22.9 lb/hp vs Unknown
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Drivetrain type front-wheel drive vs front-wheel drive Neither has a good drivetrain for off-road or bad weather driving
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Curb-to-curb turning radius 36.4 ft vs 35.7 ft Both cars corner comparably to other vehicles in their class

Practicality

Volkswagen
Jetta TDI
2011 Volkswagen Jetta TDI
2012 Chevrolet Cruze eco Chevrolet
Cruze eco
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Passengers 5 vs 5 Average number of seats
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Highway driving range 609 miles vs 529 miles Both can go pretty far on the highway on a single tank, however the Jetta TDI in particular gets exceptional range
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Cargo space 15.5 ft3 vs 15.4 ft3 Both have OK cargo room
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front seats 48.7 ft3 vs 52.7 ft3 The Cruze eco has average-sized front seats, while the Jetta TDI is very cramped
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folding rear seats Standard vs Standard Both have a rear seat that folds down for extra storage space
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power outlets Standard vs Standard Both have power outlets
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roof rails Not Available vs Not Available Neither offers roof rails
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navigation system Optional vs Not Available The Jetta TDI offers an optional navigation system; not available on the Cruze eco
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Cupholders 4 vs Unknown
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front air conditioning Standard vs Standard A/C for hot summer days comes standard

Entertainment System

Volkswagen
Jetta TDI
2011 Volkswagen Jetta TDI
2012 Chevrolet Cruze eco Chevrolet
Cruze eco
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Number of speakers 6 vs Unknown
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Has speed sensitive volume No vs Unknown
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CD player Standard vs Standard CD player comes standard
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premium radio Standard vs Not Available Have your pick of music from around the world with the Jetta TDI's satellite radio
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Has auxiliary audio input Yes vs Unknown
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Has subwoofer No vs Unknown
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entertainment system Not Available vs Not Available Neither offers an entertainment system

Other Vehicles to Consider

2011 Volkswagen Jetta TDI 2012 Audi A3 Premium Jetta TDI vs A3 Premium
2011 Volkswagen Jetta 2011 Toyota Corolla Jetta vs Corolla
2011 Volkswagen Jetta TDI 2011 Toyota Camry SE Jetta TDI vs Camry SE
2011 Volkswagen Jetta S 2011 Volkswagen Golf Jetta S vs Golf
2011 Volkswagen Jetta 2011 Honda Accord LX Jetta vs Accord LX
2012 Chevrolet Cruze LT 2012 Chevrolet Malibu LT Cruze LT vs Malibu LT
2012 Chevrolet Cruze eco 2012 Ford Fusion SE Cruze eco vs Fusion SE
2012 Chevrolet Cruze LT 2012 Chevrolet Sonic LT Cruze LT vs Sonic LT
2012 Chevrolet Cruze LTZ 2011 Toyota Camry Cruze LTZ vs Camry
2012 Chevrolet Cruze LT 2011 Honda Accord EX Cruze LT vs Accord EX

Comments Which car would you recommend, and why?

Showing 2 comments

Avatar for rrdonovan rrdonovan (7:41 PM, March 02, 2013)
Yeah, but it is still a Chevy dude! Yuk! It is nothing more than an uncomfortable, unreliable, and gone tomorrow rusting tin can. I have a Jetta TDI. It is indeed fast, solid, comfortable, and most reliable at high speeds. High quality parts are used instead of your standard Chevy garbage bin parts. When you buy Chevy=ripped off.
 
Aaron_flyboy (7:56 PM, June 24, 2012)
terrible review. half of the info is wrong on here about the cruze.  The Cruze has 10 standard airbags, and while you say it is underpowered, it has much more low end torque than the jetta.