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2nd place: 2005 Volkswagen Jetta TDI
2nd place: 2005 Volkswagen Jetta TDI
Price: (Not current model)
Avg. mileage: 43.81 mpg - 2nd place
Back roads: 47.3 mpg - 1st
City: 32.6 mpg - 3rd
Highway: 48.9 mpg - 1st

VW will bring a new Jetta TDI to the U.S. market this summer. EPA-estimated fuel economy for that car will be 41 mpg on the highway and 30 in the city, thanks to a fuel-efficient diesel engine. The last time VW sold a diesel Jetta here was for the 2006 model year.

Edmunds.com used a 2005 Jetta TDI that was already part of the site's long-term test fleet. EPA-estimated fuel economy for the 2005 Jetta diesel is slightly less than for the 2008 version. Edmunds.com's Jetta finished first in two of the three driving contests, taking the title of "Best Backroads Cruiser" and "Best Highway Flyer."

It finished second to the Prius in terms of total fuel economy but, if you consider fuel costs, it ranked third because of the high price of diesel.

NEXT: 1st place: Toyota Prius

Last updated June 02 2008: 3:17 PM ET