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2020 VW Jetta: You really can afford this car, especially in December!

When it comes to affordable new cars, as in “I can barely afford my rent, I really don’t know when I will be working next and I can’t afford to fix my current clunker but I don’t want to gamble on a used car” — a 2020 Volkswagen Jetta, where still available, maybe a good bet for you.

The 2020 Jetta is hard-pressed to get love from around the internet because there are faster and snazzier brethren in the class, such as the Mazda 3 and the Honda Civic, which truly are great cars but do cost a heck of a lot more. If you are cash-strapped (who isn’t, especially if you are a bear who is fabulous beyond your means) and are just barely making it until your first dose of a vaccine, the 2020 Jetta will do just fine for you and your bear cave, however defined.

Four doors.  Simple interior. Front-Wheel Drive. Turbo with 147 horses. 30 city / 40 highway. Prices at the beginning of the pandemic started at $18,895, so if you aren’t terribly picky and can find one online, you should fine one a bit (maybe a lot) cheaper. 

At the base trim, you get a manual transmission, which is always a pain when you want to eat in your car and drive. And yes, I know that according to Dr. Anthony Fauci here in the US, you should not eat indoors, but instead order takeout and support local restaurants by ideally parking and eating while not driving.  Yeah, old habits die hard.

Honestly, the ride is pretty smooth and easy-going.   Nothing terribly exciting about it all.   Well, it does have a turbo, so you can get some jollies for it. Also of note is the infotainment system, which really is a breeze to set up and use.  It immediately picked up my new purchase of Dolly Parton’s new holiday album,  A Holly Dolly Christmas.   Love her.  Who doesn’t?

Go up the food chain and you can easily add ten-grand to the price, which would put you in one of the 2020 Jetta 1.4T SEL Premium cars, the trim that I tested (pictured here).   Bears, that was a delight. You name the optional equipment and it was pretty much available. (But in all honesty, if you have that kind of money, do some more shopping and see what will work for you.)

So let’s be honest: this is a good basic car for your sincere basic needs.  If you are like many bears, you may indeed be living a Hard Candy Christmas: barely getting through tomorrow, but still you won’t let sorry bring you way down.   That’s the spirit, boys, and with a little (not much) extra cash and planning (again, if you have it), no need to sacrifice safety and peace of mind when you can stretch your budget just a smidge – and even get a turbo.

Shop around and see what you can find, and if you can, test-drive a 2020 Jetta.   I think you will like how it handles. Of course, financing is always a challenge, especially if your last divorce was a little messy.

‘Tis the season.

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