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Autotrader Find: This 2012 VW Jetta Sportwagen TDI Has Been Driven 445,600 Miles

Most owners of diesel-fueled Volkswagens sold their cars back to Volkswagen and took the hefty buyout after the automaker copped to cheating on the federal emissions test. But not the owner of this silver 2012 Jetta SportWagen TDI with 445,600 miles, which is available on Autotrader at Fairway Ford in Kingsport, Tennessee.

This Jetta Sportwagen‘s first owner drove the car an astounding 445,600 miles in seven years. That’s a lot of miles on any car, though low-stress, miserly diesel engines tend to rack up more miles than most unleaded engines do. This particular car was the midlevel 2012 Jetta SportWagen with the optional panoramic moonroof but without the keyless ignition and navigation system. With the optional 6-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission — DSG, in VW speak — it listed for $28,880 new.

It’s fair to say that the owner got their money’s worth. Just 10 months after the owner took delivery, the car’s Autocheck report shows that the odometer clocked more than 70,000 miles.

In fall 2015, VW admitted to cheating on the EPA’s test by installing a defeat device in its cars, which made the emissions software behave differently during testing. By then, this Jetta Sportwagen had likely crested 250,000 miles, though the Autocheck doesn’t have many mileage readings. Six months later, VW — at the, ahem, strong urging of the feds — offered to either buy back cars for well above market value or to bring cars up to emissions standards and give owners a healthy stipend for their troubles. For this wagon, VW would have coughed up $12,500 in exchange for the keys — or it would have offered to install the updated software and cut a $5,100 check.

This car’s owner opted for the latter, and the Autocheck indicates that the emissions system was updated in November 2017 at 345,000 miles. The owner added another 100,000 miles over the next 22 months, which could bode well for the durability of the emissions system update, should anyone be concerned about buying one of the many post-scandal repaired VWs widely available on Autotrader.

Did the owner of this ultra-high-milage Jetta make a good decision by keeping the car instead of netting $7,400 by selling it back? That’s hard to say — we don’t know why the owner kept the car, though fuel economy must have had something to do with it, given the mileage driven. The owner was no doubt aware they couldn’t buy another new diesel VW wagon in the U.S.

What would you have done? Find a Volkswagen Jetta Sportwagen for sale

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  1. Well, clearly the owner of this car understood what the court settlement was intended to offer consumers: restitution from either selling the car back or having it fixed.

    The owner of this car was likely offered no less than $5000 to keep the car and have the fix applied. He/She got paid either way.

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Andrew Ganz
Andrew Ganz
Andrew Ganz is an author specializing in helping in-market consumers get the most bang for their buck -- and the best car, while they're at it. When not virtually shopping for new and used cars, Andrew can probably be found under the hood of a vintage classic that's rapidly losing fluids.

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