VW is aiming for a better fit and finish than competitors
Santana and Jetta will differ very slightly in body trim
The prototypes pictured here were driven by Autocar in a recent validation test
However, the new price-leading VW will not be sold in the UK, having being conceived to be produced and sold exclusively in China. Confusingly, it will be built under two different names and joint ventures.
The new saloon (adapted from a hatchback in Europe) will replace the archaic Santana 3000 Vista and Jetta Mk2 models.
It will be assembled by VW’s Chinese joint ventures Shanghai-VW and FAW-VW.
The Shanghai-VW-produced model will be called the Santana and the FAW-VW car will be badged Jetta.
Both are underpinned by a heavily reworked version of the Polo’s PQ25 platform with a more rugged torsion beam rear axle to cope with China’s unique road conditions.