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Honda Civic vs Volkswagen Jetta

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Comments

  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    I only test drove the 2006 Civic sedan (EX), not driven it more than 25 miles, but I feel like the tracking is much better on the interstate when:

    1.) Getting passed and left in the wake of large 18-wheelers

    and 2.) Driving in the grooved roadways (less prone to follow groove

    I have driven my grandma's 1997 Civic probably 200 miles in my life, but I do remember it feeling a little light when getting passed by a big truck. The Civic naturally won't feel as secure as a larger heavier car, because the weight it what holds you down, and the Accords/Jettas weigh more, but the new Civic is definitely an improvement in straight line tracking, especially for 14k!
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    Exactly which Civic can you get for $14K? Certainly not a DX plus air conditioning....these things are still selling very close to MSRP, let alone invoice.

    ~alpha
  • crissmancrissman Posts: 145
    My family has both a '99 Civic EX and the '06 Civic EX. The seats in both are nicely supportive. The '06 seems a bit firmer, but that might just be due to the newness, and the side bolsters cradle you a bit more than the '99. I have not had the chance to try a long trip in either (the '99 is also a recent addition).

    Both vehicles track very straight. The '06 may be a bit more sensitive to road irregularities and slight steering corrections. Don't know if tires and alignment aren't the largest factors for these characteristics.
  • warnerwarner Posts: 196
    My family has both a '99 Civic EX and the '06 Civic EX. The seats in both are nicely supportive. The '06 seems a bit firmer, but that might just be due to the newness, and the side bolsters cradle you a bit more than the '99. I have not had the chance to try a long trip in either (the '99 is also a recent addition).

    Both vehicles track very straight. The '06 may be a bit more sensitive to road irregularities and slight steering corrections. Don't know if tires and alignment aren't the largest factors for these characteristics.


    The steering on the 2006 is MUCH quicker than the previous models...I have noticed (and appreciate!) that. It gives it a sportier feel when you're driving it. That and the steering wheel is a bit smaller as well. The seats are firm and supportive. I have not yet taken a long trip in it. If it's as good as my 2004 I'll be thrilled....I did a 20-hour drive to Tennessee and back (and I did all the driving) and my body felt good when I got home. In contrast, every other car that I've owned would have left me with a sore back for a trip of that duration.

    Warner
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    In my area (Southeast) Civics are going for 1,000 under MSRP these days, and I thought a Civic DX could be had for $14k something. Keep in mind, the southeast doesen't usually pay the Northeast premium on things (lower cost of living here). What is the starting price for a base Civic now? If none, did it really matter if I said 14k vs 15k in my post? The price wasn't the point, it was the improved straight-line tracking that someone had asked about.
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    You are correct in that the cost difference is not a big deal to most folks. (Why save a couple thousand dollars and not be happy with ones vehicle for the next 15 years?... that is only about $150 a year difference)

    It is good to hear that Honda has finally improved on one aspect of the Civic handling (straight line) Perhaps after another 10-20 years, Honda may start to approach the handling qualities of a German Roadcar.

    Honda still has some work to do to match the interior material quality and body rust resistance of the VW. (But we have already discussed that ad-naseum in past appends)

    It is very difficult to compare these 2 vehicles which, for the most part, are in different "classes" and intended for different segments of the car-buying population.
  • I've driven the jetta , owned a mercedes c240 a couple of yrs ago.. German cars do have a certain feel that is very positive.BUT... ultimately... who wants to take 20K plus or minus. not a small bit of change.. and sink it into a car that has CONSTANT problems requiring it be in the shop??? NO MATTER HOW GOOD THE DRIVE IS I bought the 2006 civic ex. Stick.. it moves quick.,, it drives like a car 5k more in price.. its comfortable SAFE economical,and DEPENDABLE! As for those people who have 20k to buy a car that needs lots of pampering.........?
    ITS YOUR DIME!
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    I agree 100% that VW has the superior on-road handling (as opposed to off-road? LOL). I drove an Audi A4 Cabriolet (a VW at heart) from a car show to the selling dealership, and it was fantastic to drive. It's a good thing that the German cars have the handling made for high-speeds, since they don't have 75 mph caps like we do here.

    I cannot attest to rust resistance, other than my 1996 Accord with 155,000 miles on it, which has none at all. I live in the south however, and snow/salt isn't an issue, although it is for many.
  • eyc51keyc51k Posts: 41
    gbreitling

    I owned a 06 EX speed and sold it off into the recycling bin and bought an 06 Jetta TDI...MUCH nicer car, MUCH more comfortable, MUCH more safer, Much more stable in bad conditions, (ESP), Much more economical at close to 50 MPG, and being it's a diesel it will out last your Civic by years and thousands and thousands of miles. Yes, you saved money up front, but on the back end you will be buying another car when mine is still ticking away like a Swiss Clock made by the masters who feast on red meat and not dried rice.
  • scape2scape2 Posts: 4,119
    The Jetta a larger vehicle than the Civic? Different class size?
    Shoe me a $14K 06 Civic? no way , no how. There is discussion in other chat rooms around the net about the price Honda is asking for this "economy" car..
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Again, it depends on which part of the nation you are in. In the SE U.S., Civics are easily going for $1,000 under MSRP. Yes, the Jetta is larger than the Civic, and costs much more as well. The Jetta is the nicer car here, and as far as safer? I can't say a whole lot, but the Civic has all safety features as standard, while the Jetta has things like rear airbags as options. I keep trying to convince people how the Jetta is much more comparable in price to the Accord, but noone will go to that forum! (starting prices for both are within $300, and loaded prices, the Jetta is actually $3 grand more than a loaded Accord V6!!)

    2645 of 2657 Civic EX Coupe 5spd for 17,541 by emanb Dec 19, 2005 (2:04 pm)

    I sent an email to an internet sales person who by the way I've met in person before and he quoted me 17,541 destination charges are included. This is from Autowest Honda in Fremont, CA.


    Post 2645 in the prices paid forum...this fellow got over $2100 off of MSRP...many more cases of people getting thousands off of MSRP on Civics

    Good to see you again, scape, I've missed our debates! :-) Have a Merry Christmas
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    The Civic is $15,110 for a manual transmission DX w/o air conditioning.

    Add air at the dealer, it'll run between $900-1200. Lets say an even grand, including installation. Thats $16,110. So, even if its $1000 under sticker in the SE, thats still not $14K, unless you do math differently than do I.

    Just curious- what makes the Jetta nicer? I know that VW dealerships are typically more opulent than are Honda dealerships, which is good given the that VW has been performing abysmally in JDP Initial Quality studies for a few years now, and not much better in their Long Term dependability studies or in Consumer Reports.

    I've driven both; the Jetta just isnt worth the premium over a Civic EX. The former Jetta was a styling trend setter, had impressive handling/ride balance, a top notch interior and didnt look like much else, aside from perhaps a Shrinkidink-ed Passat.

    Now, the Jetta doesnt set the style, has a ride/handling balance that is not above others at the price point, has a nice but no longer worlds better interior, and looks like a Corolla. To boot, its manages no better efficiency than does an AWD Legacy or a 268 horse Avalon. Wheres the competitive advantage?

    I guess sales will tell the story.

    FWIW, the Civic and Civic Hybrid as well as the Jetta and TDI will be in next month's CR, along with the Impreza and WRX.

    ~alpha
  • did you see the recent test put out by the iihsatsad (or something like that)? there were ten new cars that passed what i'm sure are considered to be rather stringent standards for safety in an accident. the civic was on the list - the jetta wasn't.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Add air at the dealer, it'll run between $900-1200. Lets say an even grand, including installation. Thats $16,110. So, even if its $1000 under sticker in the SE, thats still not $14K, unless you do math differently than do I.

    SE Civic? I think you may mean EX, but that's no biggie. I just read the DX price off of the Honda website. i didn't realize that destination wasn't being included in the price of $14,560, that I was referring to; my apologies. The EX in California is now being traded at $2,100 under MSRP according to my last post (which refers to another forum). This would make the Civic with A/C available for under $14k, but likely in most areas, in the mid 14s, to around $15k OTD.

    I haven't driven the new Jetta enough to know how much nicer it is, but things available like a 12-way power seat, and nice wood trim make the interior a little more opulent (but for the price with some of these features, it better d@%# well be! A $32,000 compact VW? That's just wrong!

    As far as the new VW style, hello Corolla! Even the Phaeton looks like a larger (though not more expensive) Toyota Corolla. While not a bad thing (I don't think Toyotas are really bad looking) I doubt this is what VW was going for.
  • eyc51keyc51k Posts: 41
    alpha01

    I bought a brand new 06 EX five speed, drove it for 4000 miles and decided that I missed my 05 Jetta. Decided that because I was not as comfortable, didn't have as much room, sat higher in a seat that doesn't go 12 ways like on my Jetta. The mileage is a LOT better in my TDI than the Civic. The Jetta handles a million times better than the Civic. The Jetta has tons more low end power. The five speed in the Civic was hard to shift at all times perfectly, and I have been shifting since 1967. In the Jetta, no thinking required to shift. And for me what is beyond comparison for it's price tag is the snow storms I drove thru without difficulty knowing full well that the Civic would have been down over the hills like the SUV's I saw. If I had only one reason to go back to the Jetta, that reason is the ESP which not even offered on the Civic. I actually owned and drove these two automobiles, how many on here can say the same yet seem to have all the facts without the REAL experience. I know you guys are in love with the Civic, to me they are tinny toys with the newest one complete with a video game dash board. The front end in so long when looking out I felt like I was steering a star ship. I don't understand all the hype over the worn out Civic in new clothes. I like the Jetta so much more I owned two BRAND new ones in mere months. The Civic would have never taken me home in the two snow storms the Jetta did and for that factor alone everything thing else is a plus. The Jetta is absolutely a more solid car. It rides better, feels better and IS safer. You guys on here talking the talk didn't own both like I did, therefore your opinions don't carry much credence. I do have all the sales receipts if anyone doubts my words. I work for a wage. I don’t own a business. I am not rich, but the Civic was a big enough disappoint for me to sell it off with only 4000 miles on it. Opinions are like you know what, unless like me you have actually owned both automobiles your opinions carry no weight, in my book, and I am sure many others reading these boards.
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    SE = southeast, which was discussed here previously.

    ~alpha
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    If you've been shifting since '67, maybe age plays a factor. Perhaps the new Jetta is more targeted to the AARP crowd, which is against my perception that it is targeted at a youthful crowd as was the previous iteration. Were I to pit the Jetta against a Taurus or LeSabre, you can be sure I'd pick the Jetta.

    "You guys on here talking the talk didn't own both like I did, therefore your opinions don't carry much credence."

    I absolutely dont doubt your words, I just question why you even bothered with the Civic in the first place. The fact that you hated it so much yet still bought it (along with TWO Jettas) hurts your credence more than the fact that I'm voicing my opinion even if I've not owned but driven both twice on separate test drives.

    "Opinions are like you know what, unless like me you have actually owned both automobiles your opinions carry no weight, in my book, and I am sure many others reading these boards."

    That is one of the most arrogant statements I have read in 6 years of postings. So, if you dont own a vehicle, then your opinions carry no weight? I'm sorry but I beg to differ. Given that you've been posting for less than a month, too short a time to carry any credibility on "these boards", I wonder whose opinions carry more credibility...
    Also, I dont pass my opinions off as fact, although, you certainly seem to make a habit out of that.

    WERE IT MY MONEY, I'd delightfully take the $4000 in change and buy a Civic EX OVER the overweight, overcylindered, underefficienct, unreliable Volkswagen Corolla. And I'd be sitting on cloth instead of vinyl to boot!

    [For what its worth, the Jetta VE doesnt have stability control standard, so Im not sure how youre stating that the Jetta IS safer? Is the IIHS Crash Test results? The Jetta wins Silver, the Civic... Gold... hmmn...]

    ~Shifting since '98
    alpha
  • gbreitling,

    I absolutely agree with you. What Bpeebles won't admit too, primarily because he just purchased a 2006 VW Jetta TDI, is that German cars especially the VW require much more maintenance to keep them running in top performance. And the German maintenance is not cheap!. The other problem is that most VW dealers have atrocious service. I have owned a BMW and an Audi in the past and although they rode very well they were always in the shop for one minor thing or another. And anything not covered by factory maintenance was very, very expensive, even more than the Lexus cars I have owned. I have found domsetic cars to be terrible in relability and customer service. After over 35 years of buying cars, I try to limit myslef to Acura/Honda or Lexus/Toyota. I drove a TDI and the initial impression is very psitive. Because of the high torque at low rpm the TDI is very responsive around town and after it gets up to highway speed it is very drivable. But the numbers don't lie, a 0-60 time of 13 seconds is very, very slow. I have a 6-speed 2005 Honda Accord Coupe and a 6-speed 2006 Civic Coupe Si on order. Both cars are outstanding in terms of features, performance and relability.

    Mr. Bpeebles is very biased for the 2006 Jetta TDI and rightly so becuase he owns one. Therfore you might not get a completley objective opinion and take it with a big grain of salt.

    double sixes.

    MidCow ( growing my white Santa Calus Goatee :)
  • I'm on Alpha's side.

    I learned to shift on a 51 Chevy , 3-speed on the column.

    Shifting since 1963,

    Only go for manual shift cars. My only fall back was in 1979 after a horrendous winter of ice and snow. Bought a Toronado automatic because it was the only FWD available.

    Double-sixes,

    MidCow
  • Why would you buy an 06 Honda and the sell it for a VW TDI. That doesn't make any economic sense at all. I was considering buying a diesel and have a guest drive scheduled on this Monday for the Passat. Wonderful car from what I've been reading. Unfortunately you do have to put up with lots of maintenance. They are not as reliable as you may think. German cars drive great but there is a price to pay. Don't discount the Civic's safety and potential longevity. You may be very surprised. After reading your back and forth posts with the participants here I think an elder gentleman would exercise a bit more restraint. You sound like you have buyer's remorse for your Jetta purchase. Not that it matters, but the new Civic did win the MTCOTY award. Not even sure if the Jetta was a nominee.

    P.S. Agree.. it looks exactly like a Corolla from the year. What were they thinking??
  • donzi81,

    Excellent reply DITTO!

    Merry Christams or Happy Holidays,

    MidCow
  • ctalkctalk Posts: 646
    This shows I am dealing with a kid with a kids brain, a big waste of time....

    PS: ADVICE from an "elder": Don't crash in your tin can least you meet your maker

    Here is a Christmas gift:


    You don't seem to present yourself as an "elder."

    Opinions are like you know what, unless like me you have actually owned both automobiles your opinions carry no weight, in my book, and I am sure many others reading these boards.

    Are you implying your opinion is a fact because you happen to have owned both of these vehicles? I think you need to learn how to differentiate a fact, from an opinion. Everyone is entitled to an opinion in this forum.
  • Merry Christmas Mr. Midnight! I read your prior post, DO enjoy your Si when it arrives. You made a great decision. It is really a fine automobile and has been receiving numerous accolades. It looks very sharp! It blows away the Jetta in looks. During dinner I was reading Consumer Guide. Did you know that the Jetta is built in Mexico??
  • ergoergo Posts: 56
    I recently emailed the IIHS asking why they've tested very few compact cars. Also asking if it was possible to compare the results of vehicles in different classes like the Jetta (Midsize) and Civic (Small). I was concerned because the Civic is given a "Gold-Small" rating...2 categories, including safety and structure were only listed as "acceptable"! (WTH!)

    According to the IIHS stats, (who I emailed and got a personal response from), re: Honda Civic sedan and VW Jetta are identical in width at 69in! :)

    The Jetta is almost 2 inches longer...but that's not the reason it's tested as a midsize. Apparently, 3,000lbs is the cut off. Civic is ~200+ below, Jetta is ~200+ above the 3,000 mark.

    Below is a quote of the email respose I received when asking if the Jetta and Civic were comparable in term of safety given their separate classes.

    "Thank you for your email. Our vehicle classifications take weight into account as well as overall size. Indeed, the new Jetta is not that much bigger than the new Civic, but it weighs nearly 500 lbs more. At 3,214 lbs, the new Jetta tips into our midsize category because the weight cutoff for small is 3,000 lb. Hence, it is a small and light midsize car. The older design was a heavy small car at 2,932 lbs – just 70 lb shy of the small car weight limit. The new Civic is also heavier and bigger than its predecessor, but at 2,751 lb, it is still under the weight limit for our definition of small car. Despite the different size classification, it’s probably OK to compare Jetta and Civic because our size classes can span wider weight ranges, but ,I wouldn’t advise comparing ratings for cars that are much more than 500 lbs different. :surprise: In the case of all other things being equal, the heavier one will generally provide better crash protection. "

    (Okay, I added the surprise Icon!) :blush:
  • eyc51keyc51k Posts: 41
    You don't seem to present yourself as an "elder."

    ------------------------------------------------------------

    That’s the best compliment I had in a long while and I thank you sincerely for it. Being "older” doesn’t mean acting like a prude or a cigar smoking stuck in the mud old fart. I act like a kid, live like a kid, and enjoy life like a kid which is to some "mature" individuals chagrin, and I feel sorry for those individuals. I don't care what others think, only one being matters to me as he is my only real superior advisor that I can actually respect and believe.

    Married 30 years, 54 years old, had a ton of jobs and even more cars, debt free except for this Jetta which can be paid off tomorrow if desired, have enough investments for my age to retire comfortable, have a son working on his doctorate at only 23 years of age, so this immature older guy has done what most consider a fair job in this life.

    Fröhliches Weihnachten
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Married 30 years, 54 years old, had a ton of jobs and even more cars, debt free except for this Jetta which can be paid off tomorrow if desired, have enough investments for my age to retire comfortable, have a son working on his doctorate at only 23 years of age, so this immature older guy has done what most consider a fair job in this life.

    You mean you can't hold a job? LOL ;) Well, assuming this is what you're after (I don't see what else it brings to the conversation...:

    (((APPLAUSE)))

    It wouldn't be fitting to mention my graduating #1 in my class with a 4.25, getting a full college scholarship, and managing to keep my original job, because that isn't the point of my conversation. Besides, my opinions don't matter to you, you ignore facts or slam the fact that I use them.
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    "This shows I am dealing with a kid with a kids brain, a big waste of time...."

    Think what you like, but this "kid" seems to have more support on this board than you've garnered, despite your impressive and irrelevant abilities to change jobs, live debt free, and raise children. If this thread is such "a big waste of time" well, by all means, don't post.

    FWIW, I am a HUGE fan of the Jetta GLI, I just think the rest of the line is overpriced and underwhelming. Note my presentation of opinion, and that I didnt pass it off as fact.

    And finally, welcome to the Edmunds.com TownHall! 7 years fashionably late to the debate, given your vehicle accumen, but oh, what an entrance!

    ~alpha
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    introduced ourselves, why don't we stop talking about each other and get back to talking about the cars. ;)
  • ...and OH what a post!

    BRAVO!!

    Good luck with your Civic. You seem like a civic minded individual. Punn intended! Happy Holidays!!
  • eyc51keyc51k Posts: 41
    Alpha--- if you lucky enough to live long enough you too will have many jobs, it's today’s reality. Gone are the jobs for life. These jobs were a plus and not a minus like is presented here.

    The Jetta is the choice I made and glad I did, the Civic was a mistake and one I'll never make again, call it education at the Honda dealerships delight.

    You will never convince me that selling the Civic was a mistake, the more I drive my Jetta the more I like it, the more I drove the Civic the less I liked it. I made my judgment based on true experience unlike this forum provides, mere words.
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