15k: Cup Overfloweth: 2010 Volkswagen Jetta TDI Cup Edition

The story of most vehicles with turbodiesel engines is one not defined by numbers. For example, the Jetta TDI Cup Edition, a car above a badge special but below a homologation car. Heel-toe downshift into a turn, clip the apex, mash the throttle and revel in the most satisfying torque sensation this side of Motown… only to be passed by a high school girl in a base Veloster. It’s a cruel world. But at least you can save its whales by getting 40+ mpg in this 2010 Volkswagen Jetta TDI Cup Edition for $15,500 in Port Murray, NJ.

Just 1501 of these were sold in 2010 to promote the short-lived TDI Cup series. You may remember it as “the Jetta with the bodykit,” thanks to the garish “Thunderbunny” bumpers, the $2,350 option you see here. You may not remember the stiffened suspension, sway bars, bigger brakes, and 225/40/18 all-season tires – just replaced on this car.

Again, don’t discount this car’s worth by comparing its numbers to those of the TDI Cup (pictured above). Against the race car, this street edition is 500 pounds heavier, at 3,300, 30 horsepower weaker, at 140, and does without the R8-sourced brakes. But 236 lb-ft of torque from 1,750 to 5,000 RPM through a sweet six-speed is a fine way to achieve 41 MPG. Enjoy the feel of the thrust, because it’s only good for a 17-second quarter mile.

The ad’s only picture doesn’t show the interior, but this handy picture from myturbodiesel.com shows what you should look for (besides the DSG shifter because this one is thankfully a manual). Most Cup Editions are still stuck near $17-20 grand, only about $5,000 less than MSRP. Such lofty prices must be attributed to rarity because these aren’t performance giants by any means. The low price on this one can be attributed to the CEL from a faulty air intake sensor, an easy fix. It’s a good price for the fuel-thrifty canyon carver, and if it’s too sluggish, chip it. It’s the closest you’ll get to a Volkswagen race car you could live with every day.

See another car named after dinnerware? Email us at tips@dailyturismo.com.

In case you were wondering, yes, PhiLOL still drives a slow car.