Difference Between Jetta GL & Jetta GLS

by Rob Wagner

The differences between the 1999 through 2002 Volkswagen Jetta GL and Jetta GLS models are limited to the engine and performance. Body styles and dimensions remain essentially the same between the two models.

Trim Levels

The Jetta GL is the base level model and the Jetta GLS is the turbocharged sports version.

GL Engine Specifications

The Jetta GL is powered by a 115-horsepower 2-liter inline 4-cylinder engine generating 122 lb.-feet of torque.

GLS Engine Specifications

A turbocharged 1.8-liter inline-4 engine generates 180 horsepower and 173 lb.-feet of torque for the GLS model.

GL Performance

The GL’s 2-liter engine allows the Jetta to hit 0-60 mph in 10.5 seconds and achieve 22 mpg in the city and 28 on the highway.

GLS Performance

The turbo GLS can reach 0-60 mph in 7.9 seconds. It earns 23 mpg in city driving and 29 mpg on the highway.


Both models feature standard air-conditioning, power locks, power mirrors and remote locking, but the GLS can be equipped with three-point safety harnesses and a tachometer.

About the Author

Rob Wagner is a journalist with over 35 years experience reporting and editing for newspapers and magazines. His experience ranges from legal affairs reporting to covering the Middle East. He served stints as a newspaper and magazine editor in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Wagner attended California State University, Los Angeles, and has a degree in journalism.

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Photo Credits

  • Nicolas Agustin Cabrera/Demand Media