VW Jetta GLI Facelift Spied Showing Tweaked Looks For First Time

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Here is our first look at Volkswagen developing a refresh for the Jetta GLI sports sedan. The current version debuted at the 2019 Chicago Auto Show.

After a close look at the pictures, the VW engineers don’t appear to put much camouflage on this Jetta GLI. The company adds a tiny front splitter below the fascia. The mesh pattern in the lower opening has bigger holes than the existing design. The upper grille doesn’t seem to change other than adopting the modernized VW emblem.

At the back, there’s a much more prominent rear fascia that partially encloses each exhaust layout. A closed-off honeycomb pattern runs between the opening. The rear pipes are too small to fill up the holes, so VW might plan to add a finisher to make these elements appear bigger.

Our spy photographers note that the red reflex reflectors on the rear bumper are simply taped on. This could hint that bigger changes to the back of the production version of the refreshed GLI.

There aren’t spy photos of the cabin, but judging by the exterior, we aren’t expecting big changes. VW might update the infotainment software or tweak the cabin trim. Don’t expect any revolutionary revisions, though.

The situation under the hood probably isn’t too different, either.  The existing model comes with a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that’s good for 228 horsepower (170 kilowatts) and 258 pound-feet (350 Newton-meters) of torque. Buyers can select a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic or a six-speed manual.

The refreshed Jetta debuts in the third quarter of 2021. Meanwhile, the new Golf GTI and Golf R also finally arrive in the US in Q3, too. In Europe, the latest GTI makes 241 hp (180 kW), and the R has 315 hp (235 kW). A Clubsport sits between them with 296 hp (221 kW), but VW isn’t confirming this one for America yet.

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