Thermo, I get what yore saying and agree..
Now, dont try to argue the pros of VWs too much... I am a very happy saab owner, and are in the same boat - you could praise the virtues endlessly, and many will just shoot and shoot you down no matter what!!!
Id never buy a car that has a markup (except maybe a corvette z06). certainly not a Honda product.
As for looks, Im not a fan of the element, and the new civic isnt all that great to me.. but the fit is designed in a neat little package, with high utility and small exterior dimensions - to me its nice... YMMV.
As far as VW 4 cylinders being more powerful and whatnot... maybe diesels... though Id still take an old MB diesel anyday over a newer VW. But once again, thats just me. Their gas engines havent mpressed me much. the standard old 2.0 is very poor in the power department, and after driving a 1.8 GTI and an 1.8 Jetta (both MT) numerous times, Im much happier with my saab turbo 4cyl. My opinion again though...
As for diesels, I see what youre saying... per Tosh's information, and from the UK sites. However for what theyre worth - look at the consumption rates - the VW 2.0TDI in the golf is rated at 140/236 lb-ft, combined economy of 49.6 MPG, and emissions of 154 g/km. The civic 2.2 makes 138/236lb-ft, combined economy of 55.4MPG and emissions of 135 g/km. sure the two vehicles may be a bit diffeent in design and purpose, but the Honda product seems to be a bit ore efficient - the #1 metric to most diesel buyers - we know were not going anywhere fast! Even if we stepped back and used the VW 1.9 TDI, were looking at 105/184lb-ft, but still only 51.4 MPG in combined driving, and 143g/km pollution.
Im far from the person who blindly defends the Jpanese automakers, and Ive sure been vocal in saying that for example the fit's highway MPG is nothing short of disapointing... but if both diesels were available over here right now, Id take the Honda over the VW - personally...
Of course, if I was looking for a highway cruiser or highway commuter, and had the $$$ Id be snatching up one of these without thnking twice:
All my opinion , YMMV - appreciate the discussion!