A first hint of the new Volkswagen Jetta has hit the internet thanks to a preview sketch shown as part of a presentation by Volkswagen’s North American chief engineering officer.
Although the side profile rendering still keeps plenty of details under wraps, a few key details can be identified, indicating that the relatively staid current model is set to take on a mildly more dynamic and premium appearance.
The most obvious change sees the 2019 Jetta (a reference to its American model year rather than its year of introduction) adopt a ‘six window’ glasshouse for the first time, with glazing extended to the C-pillar for a visually-lengthened roofline.
Also visible in the teaser is Volkswagen’s latest corporate face with a deep grille that extends from the leading edge of the bonnet to low in the front bumper and reaches into the headlights.
At the rear the Jetta adopts a subtle ducktail rear lip formed into the rear sheet metal, with a pair of integrated faux-exhaust finishers formed into the rear bumper.
On the technical front, the new Jetta will be built atop Volkswagen’s versatile MQB chassis structure, and entry-level North American models will receive an updated version of the 1.4-litre turbo engine used in the current model - which differs from the 1.4-litre twin-charged engine sold in Australia.
A new eight-speed automatic transmission will also become part of the powertrain specification for the new model.
Full official details and in-the-metal images of the new car will be held off until its official debut as part of the North American International Auto Show in Detroit in January 2018.
Australian buyers hoping for a new compact Volkswagen sedan may be disappointed to learn that the company is unlikely to produce a right hand drive version, focussing instead on stronger-selling SUVs and the popular Golf hatch for the local market.