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The Honda Civic is one of the most popular small sedans on the road, offering outstanding performance and comfort, with some of the best safety and convenience features available. It has in many ways set the standard for vehicles in its class. The Volkswagen Jetta is one of its nearest competitors, a peppy car with many similar features drawing drivers toward it.
Drivers all across Hialeah, Doral, and Miami are curious as to whether the 2020 Honda Civic or the 2020 Volkswagen Jetta come out on top in a direct competition. Check out this detailed head-to-head comparison from Braman Honda and see for yourself which car is the right small sedan for you.
The 2020 Honda Civic has two available engines. Its standard LX trim comes with a 2.0L I4 engine with 158 horsepower. Step up a few trims or options for Honda’s Intercooled Turbo Regular Unleaded I4 engine with a powerful 174 horsepower. Overdrive combined with an available continuously variable transmission gives the Civic smooth handling and fast gear transitions.
The 2020 Volkswagen Jetta has a standard Intercooled Turbo Regular Unleaded I4 1.4L engine with 147 horsepower. There’s no upgrade option, so drivers have to be satisfied with that mechanism.
Overall, the Jetta doesn’t match the drivability or fuel economy of the Civic. The base Jetta gets an EPA-estimated 30 city/40 highway MPG. On the other hand, the Civic achieves an EPA-estimated 32 city/42 highway MPG for its EX and EX-L trims.* This means fewer trips to the gas station, which is an asset to anybody who covers a lot of miles.
When it comes to maneuvering through tight spaces, a compact car is a natural choice. The widths of the Honda Civic and the VW Jetta differ by just 0.1 inches, both clocking in at under 71 inches. For a full 360-degree u-turn, the handling of the Honda Civic stands out. It requires just 35.4 feet for a curb-to-curb turn diameter. The VW Jetta needs 36.4 feet to execute the same task.
If you want to be sitting pretty, either the 2020 Honda Civic or the 2020 VW Jetta can accommodate with available leather-trimmed seats. For comfort and support, the VW Jetta offers an available 6-way power adjustable driver’s seat. You’ll have additional ways to fine-tune your experience with the available 8-way power adjustable driver’s seat of the Honda Civic.
Paired with good seating, both vehicles have good heating. (Please excuse the rhyme—a good sedan should inspire a little poetry.) Heated front seats are available on both the Honda Civic and the VW Jetta, keeping the driver toasty on a chilly day.
Drivers will also find the convenience of an available Dual-Zone Automatic Climate Control System in the Civic and the comparable Climatronic® dual-zone automatic climate control in the Jetta, great for cooling down on warm afternoons. The standard Civic still packs convenience with an automatic climate control system while the VW Jetta includes as standard a traditional, manual control system.
Both the VW Jetta and the Honda Civic are compact cars with a 5-passenger seating capacity. Their respective vehicle lengths and heights differ by less than two inches each. Inside the vehicles, the measurements’ variation becomes more impactful.
You won’t lack for space in the 2020 Civic. Passenger volume measures 97.8 cubic feet, with up to 39.3 inches of front headroom and 57 inches of front shoulder room. Second-row shoulder room is 55 inches, with 37.1 inches of headroom. There’s plenty of legroom as well, with 42.3 inches in front and 37.4 inches in the rear. The trunk is 15.1 cubic feet.
The VW Jetta has a bit less trunk room at 14.1 cubic feet. Total passenger volume is only 94.7 cubic feet, with 38.5 inches of front headroom and 55.9 inches front shoulder room. Second-row shoulder room is 54.0 inches; 2nd-row headroom is 37.2 inches. Front legroom is 41.1 inches. The only dimension where the Jetta matches the Civic is in its 37.4 inches of 2nd-row legroom.
The Honda Civic is loaded with comfort and technology features. Standard on each trim includes, Bluetooth® connectivity, a USB port, and a 5.0-inch screen for infotainment. Move up to the Sport trim, and you’ll upgrade to an 8-speaker audio system, plus a 7.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system that can use Android Auto™ and Apple CarPlay™.
Music lovers can maximize their fun with the Civic and its available 450-Watt Premium Audio System. It produces high-fidelity sound through 10 strategically placed speakers, including a subwoofer for resonance. Keeping your ears comfortable requires little effort, thanks to standard Speed-Sensitive Volume Compensation. The VW Jetta doesn’t have this feature, so you’ll have to tinker with the controls as your speed changes.
The Jetta has most of the same standard equipment as the Civic, including USB, Bluetooth®, and a 6.5-inch touchscreen infotainment system.
On either the 2020 Honda Civic or the 2020 VW Jetta, you’ll find helpful sensors that keep you informed about nearby goings on. On the Civic, available Honda LaneWatch™ uses a camera to depict a real-time view of your blind spot in your center console. For the VW Jetta, available Blind Spot Monitor takes a lower-key approach with a light that tells you when you shouldn’t merge.
With standard Honda Sensing®, the Civic provides driver-assistive technology to make every trip feel a little safer and simpler. This includes the Lane Keeping Assist System, which directs corrective action to steering if the Civic starts to drift too far outside of a detected lane.
Adaptive Cruise Control is another standard feature. It slows as necessary to ensure a judicious distance from other vehicles on the road, then returns to your chosen cruising speed when the way is clear.
The VW Jetta has both Adaptive Cruise Control and the Lane Keeping System, but they’re not standard.
One more nice perk that the Civic provides is a standard Rear-Window Defroster with Timer—because the less time you have to spend scraping ice in the winter, the better. This is not available for the VW Jetta.
The 2020 Honda Civic and the 2020 VW Jetta are close competitors, but in the end, the Honda Civic sets the bar high for small sedans. If you’re looking for the most interior room, best performance and features, and the highest cabin quality, the 2020 Honda Civic is the winner.
The 2020 Honda Civic is ready for you at Braman Honda in Miami. Stop wishing you had a Civic and take the first step toward owning one. Visit our dealership to experience the 2020 Honda Civic for yourself!
* 32 city/42 highway/36 combined mpg rating for EX & EX-L trims. Based on 2020 EPA mileage ratings. Use for comparison purposes only. Your mileage will vary depending on how you drive and maintain your vehicle, driving conditions and other factors.