Analytical Report Project

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Contents

Introduction. 2

Review of Volkswagen Jetta. 2

Fuel economy. 2

Durability, mileage, and comfort. 3

Safety. 4

Price. 5

Review of Scion XB. 6

Fuel economy. 6

Reliability, mileage, and comfort. 6

Safety. 8

The options of buying and buying. 8

Comparison and contrast on the Volkswagen Jetta and Scion xB. 9

Works Cited. 11

Introduction

The Volkswagen Jetta is a product of German automaker Volkswagen Group. The small family car was first produced in 1979 and was positioned to fill the niche market for the saloon/sedan category. Over time, this model has been marketed variously as Bora, Atlantic, Fox, City Jetta, Jetta City, Vento, GLI, and Sagitar. Originally, Jetta was adapted through the addition of a conventional truck to Volkswagen’s Golf hatchback, as well as some distinctive styling.

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The model has been offered in both five-door station wagon and two- and four-door saloon/sedan. The company had sold over 6.6 million Jettas worldwide as of 2005, a third of which were sold in the U.S alone. The model has been undergoing improvements in both size and power since the introduction of the original version in 1980.

The Scion XB is a product manufactured by Toyota for the U.S market with the aim of selling it under the youth-oriented Scion brand. It is a five-door, box-shaped hatchback. The first-generation XB was a rebadged version of Toyota bB, which was targeted for the Japanese market. The XB was one of the models in the lineup for the US-exclusive division for Toyota, which was held at the brand’s launch in 2004.

Review of Volkswagen Jetta

Fuel economy

Engine choices vary depending on the Jetta’s local market. Linn and Klier indicate that in the third generation of Volkswagen, fuel economy was a strong point, and for this reason, the model gained high ratings (6). In top trim lines, buyers could access the 2.8- liter six-cylinder engine. In one of the car’s magazine tests, it was possible for the 128 power plant to accelerate this car from 0 to 60 mph in just 6.9 seconds.

Fischer indicates that the fourth-generation Volkswagen Jetta comes with a new range of unit injector diesel engines (2639). This new design comes with advanced unit injectors as well as additional electronics in order to meet all the new standards for air emissions set for Europe and North America. In order to accomplish the role of producing enough power while meeting all the set emission standards, the new technology facilitates direct injection of fuel into the combustion chamber at incredibly high pressures. This high pressure facilitates complete combustion, thereby increasing the level of fuel efficiency.

Durability, mileage, and comfort

Critics tend to be impressed by the Volkswagen Jetta in terms of the handling experience and the comfort of the ride. Other reviewers say that the car is ugly in the segment of a compact car, and somewhat expensive if one compared it with other small family-car categories.

The biggest complaints against the model involve the back seats, which lack enough room for two adults. The seat cushioning is too firm. However, the interior is ranked highly in terms of the high level of fit. On the negative side, it is bland, uninspiring and sparsely equipped.

A unique highlight of this model is the signature red and blue instrument lighting, which has been a standard for all models since 1999. There are climate controls, which are positioned at a low point on the console. When the air is vented to the windshield, it is impossible to turn on the recirculation mode.

The power outlet is conveniently recessed just next to the ashtray. It is covered using two flaps. The retractable cup holders are positioned above the stereo obscure vision for the stereo, making beverages spill on the gas selector, stereo and several other sensitive components when the vehicle is moving through erratic, mountainous terrain. The construction of the retractable cup holder is made using flimsy plastic

The front bumper of the Jetta is ill-suited for rough, mountainous terrain. It is likely to cause disappointment for a business executive who parks his car quite often. The bumper can easily be damaged if one parks the car without adequate ground clearance. This makes it difficult for a curb to be cleared in a parking space. Apart from scratching the cover, the bumper easily hooks onto the curb if one drives too far forward towards the available parking space.

The body of the fifth-generation Volkswagen Jetta, however, comes with exciting enhancements that are suitable for long mileage. It is made of extensive high-strength steel, and laser welding is used in 355 of all its boy parts. The impact of this has been significant increases in both torsional and dynamic rigidity. The other improvements, according to Balk, include a front bumper that absorbs impact, reducing chances of injury to pedestrians, and a new door design that facilitates the replacement of a damaged outer pane with ease (1565).

Safety

The fifth-generation Volkswagen Jetta has been offered a ‘Good’ rating by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) in aspects of both side-impact tests and front offset impact tests. The institute indicated in 2005 that the car’s performance in side impact protection was the most excellent that the organization had rated.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the Jetta received a high rating for both passenger and driver protection in the event of a frontal impact. These high-safety standards, later on, became the subject of a series of television commercials whereby the manufacturer emphasized the high safety standards of the Volkswagen Jetta.

The Volkswagen Jetta GLI is the US model for the automaker. Its reviews are generally positive as well, though critics point out that the car appears to be losing its European character following efforts to redesign it for the North American market. The most positive aspect of this model’s safety includes quick and precise steering, strong handling, and ease and firmness of control.

For the North American Jetta variant, the fit and finish are excellent, and the front seats are rather comfortable and upscale. The rear seat has ample space, and displays and control appear to be perfectly positioned. In other words, The GLI is a ‘Sportline’ model whose distinctness is evident in the firmness of the suspension, low-profile tires, and stylish sports seats.

Other safety utilities in the Volkswagen Jetta model include side curtain airbags, a new-generation Electronic Stability Program, and active head restraints. The family car’s DSG (Direct-Shift Gearbox) is also worth mentioning, together with the dual-zone automatic climate control and the electromechanical power steering.

Price

In terms of prices, the US News & World Report has ranked Volkswagen Jetta at position 16 in terms of the affordability of mid-size cars. However, observes Goldberg, in terms of fuel efficiency, this car is much cheaper to operate than other midsize cars that are ranked more favorably than the Jetta in the report (30). Pisharodi &Parameswaran indicate that the resale market for this car has been increasingly rabid owing to the halting of importation in order for more changes to be made in response to more stringent emission laws in the U.S (707).

Review of Scion XB

Fuel economy

The hatchback uses a powerful 2.4-liter engine whose highest rate of increase in power is achieved at 22mpg. The fuel consumption pattern of the latest XB is higher compared to that of previous versions. This increase has been necessitated by, among other factors, the introduction of new environmental protection agency standards on fuel consumption in 2008.

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The vehicle produces a 96.0 mm stroke and a compression ratio of 9.8. The model also has a double overhead cam and a variable valve timing camshaft. This standard indicates the high level of the model’s reliability in terms of fuel consumption. The model uses unleaded petrol, which is consumed through a multi-point injection fuel system.

Reliability, mileage, and comfort

The first-generation model is different from the second generation model in terms of reliability, mileage and comfort. The two versions are based on different platforms. In the second generation Scion, the front bench seat has been replaced with bucket seats as well as column-mounted shifter that have been changed to a floor-mounted shifter.

The available drive-trains are also different. In the earlier bB version, the engine options available were 1.3l and 1.5l. Both of which were mated into an exclusive 5-speed automatic transmission. This transmission was available in the all-wheel-drive variety. In the US specifications standards, the xB produced 108 horsepower, making it a powerful vehicle that could be relied on in rough, challenging terrains.

Conspicuously, notes Nelson, the Toyota Scion bB did not have a spare tire (6). The Scion xB, however, was equipped with a spare tire that was stored under the left side of the cargo floor at the back. The spare tire raised the floor of the cargo by a few inches, thereby necessitating the creation of a storage bin to the right of this spare tire in order to reclaim some or all of the lost storage space. On the other hand, the Toyota bB had an excellent pull-out storage tray positioned under the passenger seat, which the xB lacks.

In terms of equipment, there is a choice of three brand new head units in all the 2008 scions. All the model’s sound systems have six speakers that have standard iPod connectivity. The base head unit comes with MP3, AAC CD, and WMA compatibility, as well as the traditional SSP equalizer, presets that the model uses. It is possible to set any of the three scion models presets as well as to include an Automatic Sound Levelizer, a feature that automatically raises the vehicle’s speed and ambient noises continue to increase.

The premium head unit has a small LCD that is able to display pictures as well as movies that are downloaded from Pioneer’s website. There is also a navigation system with GPS functionality as well as the features of the base system, aside from the SNS 100 system that can play DVD movies against the backdrop of many back-lit color choices.

Azu indicates that typically, cars that are within the price range of $25,000 such as this model have never been fun to drive (119). Issues of reliability aside, the model, according to Berry, is not overly sporty (843). It appears and feels more or less like a delivery truck. The maker’s main target was the bracket of people who are between 18 and 34 years. Although the model is in its second generation, the box continues to form a distinct silhouette.

The Scion has been making it easy for the customer base to continue personalizing their xBs by providing them with a long list of aftermarket-type accessories that are dealer-installed, including body kits, audio systems, wheels, and mild performance modifications. Pricing is done in a no-haggle and the vehicle will be built to order within just one week.

Safety

In terms of safety, the Scion received a ‘Good’ rating from the IIHS after the frontal offset test. All the categories that were measured in the test earned the vehicle a ‘Good’ rating. In the side impact test, the vehicle earned a ‘Poor’ overall score. This could be because the models produced between 2004 and 2006 did not have side airbags. However, the side airbags have been included in the model for the year 2008 and afterward.

All xBs have standard four-wheel brakes that are set on anti-lock mode, electronic brake-force distribution, brake assist, front passenger dual-stage airbags, vehicle stability control driver, rear-side curtain airbags, seat-mounted side airbags for the torso and a first aid kit. According to the ratings of Car and Driver magazine in 2008, Scion xB is one of the top ten safest vehicles that cost under $25,000.

The options for buying and buying

It is rather cheap to lease a Scion xB, considering the fact that earlier-generation models have overshadowed by more stylish models. It is easy to find a reputable xB model that is older but cheaper sufficiently efficient for the business. Moreover, observes, Busemeyer, with Scion xB, it appears that there are many options to consider without sacrificing the efficiency concept, considering that the 2008 model is also a relatively cheap model (53).

Nationwide sales of the model have been embarked on since 2005, therefore, one may not have much difficulty looking for a new or old model to either buy or lease. The standard equipment offered by the Scion are much better than the average-variety that other low-priced economy cars offer. Although the plastic while covers are the standard, it is also possible to get the low-cost wheel accessories as well as add the optionally supplied side and head airbags.

Comparison and contrast on the Volkswagen Jetta and Scion xB

In terms of fuel economy, the Jetta appears like the model that one should watch out for. The different generations of the model offer buyers a wide variety of fuel consumption patterns and levels to choose from. The fourth-generation model, for instance, comes with a variety of unit injector diesel engines. The model, like all others after it, has been made to comply with strict emission standards that are set in the US without compromising on fuel economy. Although the latest xB is also rather reliable in terms of fuel economy, there are not many options to consider, both for the business people who want to lease and those who want to buy this model.

With regard to mileage, the Jetta performs much more poorly than the Scion xB. Although the enhancements made on the Jetta were made with consideration on mileage in mind, the interior of the vehicle seems to be out of tune with the long mileage in terms of comfort, driving experience, handling and utility of various accessories.

The Scion xB is more adapted for an environment with dry roads and snowy, mountainous regions. No significant complaints have been raised with regard to the utility of the xB in rough terrain. In sharp contrast, Volkswagen has been a serious disappointment because the front bumper is not properly designed. It easily breaks up if one parks a car without maintaining enough ground clearance. The car can break up in the middle of a crucial business undertaking, leading to not only lost business but costly repairs. Toyota is known for a myriad of dealer-supplied accessories. Therefore, it is generally to repair a Toyota model than a Volkswagen, particularly in the US market.

The Scion is also the desirable equipment both in the interior and on the exterior of the vehicle. It has utilities for entertainment, complete with options for having the options customized by the dealer. These utilities may not mean much in the practical business procedure being pursued in rugged, mountainous environments, but they substantially add to the feeling of relaxation and inspiration, adding value to the business undertakings.

There is a considerable similarity in the safety ratings of Scion xB and those of the Volkswagen Jetta. However, if one was to settle for an older model, the Jetta may give more safety reassurance, since the initial versions did not have problems getting approval in all aspects of driver and passenger safety the way the xB did. For purposes of maximum safety, the best Scion to buy is one that was produced in 2008 or later. The current version of the model has passed all tests of safety and, therefore, is the most excellent option for business.

In terms of price, the Volkswagen is a rather expensive model compared to other cars that sport the same features and level of comfort. In term of utility, the Scion xB scores excellently well since it is a multipurpose vehicle; it can function as a mini-sports utility vehicle, a small family vehicle, or a delivery truck. It has ample space and a spare tire, features that are immensely helpful during business trips to remote locations with rough terrains. Its price is also much lower compared to that of the Volkswagen Jetta.

Works Cited

Azu, Irina. Creating a green baloney detection kit for green claims made in the CNW report: Dust to Dust: the energy cost of new vehicles: from concept to disposal, Massachusetts: Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2008.

Balk, Stacy. Effects of retroreflector placement on the nighttime conspicuity of pedestrians: An open-road study, London: Human Factors and Ergonomics Society, 2009.

Berry, Steven. “Automobile Prices in Market Equilibrium,” Econometrica, 63.4 (1995): 841-890.

Busemeyer, J. “Context effects and models of preferential choice: implications for consumer behavior”, Marketing Theory 7.1(2007): 39-58.

Fischer, Michael. “Batteries: Higher energy density than gasoline?”Energy Policy, 37.7 (2009): 2639-2641.

Goldberg, Pinelopi. “The Effects of the Corporate Average Fuel Efficiency Standards in the US,” The Journal of Industrial Economics, 46.1 (1998): 1-33.

Linn, Joshua. &Klier, Thomas. Gasoline Prices and the Demand for New Vehicles: Evidence from Monthly Sales Data, retrieved from http://tigger.uic.edu/~jlinn/vehicles.pdf  on November 10, 2010.

Nelson, Elizabeth. Car Review of the 2008 Scion XB: Toyota’s Boxy, Compact New Scion Appeals to Gen-Y and Beyond, retrieved from http://www.suite101.com/content/the-2008-scion-xb-a41747  on November 10, 2010.

Pisharodi, Mohan, & Parameswaran, Ravi. “Confirmatory Factor Analysis Of A Country-Of-Origin Scale: Initial Results”, Advances in Consumer Research 19.11 (1992): 706-714.

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