Jones Ford Buckeye Compares 2011 Ford Fiesta VS 2011 Volkswagen Jetta Near Surprise, AZ

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2011 Ford Fiesta

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2011 Volkswagen Jetta

Safety Comparison

The Fiesta (except S) offers optional 911 Assist, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The Jetta doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies, so if you’re involved in an accident and you’re incapacitated help may not come as quickly.

Both the Fiesta and the Jetta have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four wheel antilock brakes, traction control and electronic stability systems to prevent skidding.

Warranty Comparison

There are over 6 times as many Ford dealers as there are Volkswagen dealers, which makes it much easier to get service under the Fiesta’s warranty.

Reliability Comparison

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2010 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Ford vehicles are better in initial quality than Volkswagen vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Ford fifth in initial quality, above the industry average. With 42 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volkswagen is ranked 31st, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ surveys of the owners of three-year-old cars provide the long-term dependability statistics that show that Ford vehicles are more reliable than Volkswagen vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Ford 8th in reliability, above the industry average. With 84 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volkswagen is ranked 34th.

Engine Comparison

The Fiesta’s 1.6 DOHC 4 cyl. produces 5 more horsepower (120 vs. 115) than the Jetta S’ standard 2.0 SOHC 4 cyl.

As tested in Car and Driver the Ford Fiesta is faster than the Jetta S 2.0 SOHC 4 cyl. (manual transmissions tested):



Zero to 60 MPH

9.3 sec

11 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

29.1 sec

33 sec

Quarter Mile

17 sec

18.1 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

82 MPH

79 MPH

Top Speed

119 MPH

118 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

On the EPA test cycle the Fiesta gets better fuel mileage than the Jetta:



4 cyl./Manual

28 city/37 hwy

24 city/34 hwy

5 cyl./Manual


23 city/33 hwy

4 cyl./Auto

29 city/40 hwy

23 city/32 hwy

5 cyl./Auto


24 city/31 hwy

The Fiesta has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation which causes pollution. The Jetta doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

The Fiesta stops much shorter than the Jetta:



70 to 0 MPH

175 feet

193 feet

Car and Driver

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The Fiesta has vehicle speed sensitive variable-assist power steering, for low-effort parking, better control at highway speeds and during hard cornering, and a better feel of the road. The Jetta doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.

The Fiesta’s drift compensation steering can automatically compensate for road conditions which would cause the vehicle to drift from side to side, helping the driver to keep the vehicle straight more easily. The Jetta doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

For better maneuverability, the Fiesta’s turning circle is 2 feet tighter than the Jetta’s (34.4 feet vs. 36.4 feet).

Chassis Comparison

The Ford Fiesta may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 250 to 550 pounds less than the Volkswagen Jetta.

The Fiesta Sedan is 8.6 inches shorter than the Jetta, making the Fiesta easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Passenger Space Comparison

The Fiesta has .9 inches more front headroom and 1 inch more front legroom than the Jetta.

Ergonomics Comparison

In case you lock your keys in your vehicle, or don’t have them with you, you can let yourself in using the available exterior keypad. The Jetta doesn’t offer an exterior keypad entry system.

The Fiesta SEL/SES’ standard rear view mirror has an automatic dimming feature. This mirror can be set to automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on it, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Jetta doesn’t offer the luxury of an automatic dimming rear view mirror.

The Fiesta’s optional steering wheel mounted cruise control is close at hand. The Jetta SE/SEL/TDI’s standard cruise control is on an over-crowded turn signal stalk.

The Fiesta’s available GPS navigation system has a real-time traffic update feature that offers alternative routes to automatically bypass traffic problems. (Service available in a limited number of metro areas.) The Jetta’s available navigation system doesn’t offer real-time traffic updates.

With available voice command, the Fiesta offers the driver hands free control of the radio, cell phone and the navigation computer by simply speaking. The Jetta doesn’t offer a voice control system.

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