Popular Mechanics had a post on their site comparing Toyota’s Prius to the new diesel-powered Volkswagen Jetta and they got some interesting results.
The Prius dominated in city driving with 44.7 miles per gallon compared to the Jetta’s 32 MPG. This is likely due to the Prius’s hybrid powertrain system: when you stop at a light or stop sign in the Prius, the engine shuts off, so you don’t burn ANY fuel. Interesting to note is that their Prius got 3 MPG less than it’s EPA rating while the Jetta for 4 MPG more than it’s EPA rating.
Although the Prius wins in city driving, the Jetta wins for highway cruising. At a constant 65 mph, their Prius got 44.8 MPG while their Jetta TDI got 45.4 MPG. Although not a huge difference, its cool to see that diesels are still a great option for excellent fuel economy. The Popular Mechanic’s article said that the TDI gets a $1,300 tax credit for using “Lean Burn Technology” and the Prius’s tax credit is no longer available, making the Jetta $1,320 cheaper than the Prius.
Moral of the story: If you do a lot of city driving, get a Prius. If you’re mostly on the highway, want to save some bucks and like the smell of a new Volkswagen, check out the 2009 Jetta TDI.
Read the Full Review Here: Prius vs Jetta TDI