HA certified Chinese Classic
While production stopped in 1991 worldwide, the Mk2 Jetta was built from 1992 to 2012 in China via the FAW-VW cross venture. Nearly two million models were built over a thirty year period, going through three China-only facelifts in 1998, 2004 and 2010. The Mk2 Jetta and B2 Santana built VW's reputation in China as a producer of dependable, well-engineered and long lasting cars.
The Origins of FAW-VW
As the name implies, FAW - First Automotive Works, is China's earliest automobile factory. Following the success of the Shanghai-VW cross venture, a deal was struck between VW and FAW to commence the production of the Mk2 Jetta in the FAW factory at Chungchun, Jilin province. The production line was initially adapted from the equipment leftover from the Westmoreland plant in US, but was continually updated to improve production quality and efficiency. Similar to Shanghai-VW, the Mk2 Jetta achieved widespread market success in China, and FAW-VW grew to become one of China's biggest car companies.
The first FAW Mk2 Jetta was produced in December 1991.
For the Chinese market, many variations of the Mk2 Jetta was developed over three decades of production.
Originally only available with a 1.6 8V carbureted engine, Fuel injection soon became standard from 1998 on in the FAW Mk2 Jetta, and Bosch electronic fuel injection was added in the 2000s, along with ABS with electronic brake distribution. In 1997, the first major facelift of the Mk2 came in the form of the Jetta King. A high performance 20V NA 1.6 engine was also introduced to both the Jetta King and the regular Jetta (GT trim level). A 1.9 SDI naturally aspirated diesel engine was available during the 2000s - this model is famed among taxi drivers for being astoundingly reliable and fuel efficient.
A four speed manual gearbox came as standard at the start of production, updated to five speed in the 1996. An automatic gearbox option was introduced in 1998 with the introduction of the Jetta King.
VW's Own OEM+: Jetta King & 20V Twin Cam
In order to modernize the Mk2 platform, FAW-VW worked closely with VW Headquarters to develop the Jetta King. Modeled after the exterior styling of the B4 Passat, a new frontend, bumpers, trunklid and taillights were developed.
The biggest update came with the 20V Twin Cam 1.6. FAW-VW took the five valve per cylinder EA113 from the Mk4 Golf, and dropped it in the Mk2 Chassis. This is the only OEM 20V Mk2 ever made by VW. This engine was available in the Jetta King GTX and Jetta GT. The GT was the non-facelift big bumper Mk2 with the 20V.
A small update followed in 2000, where many details were updated. The main changes were the Corrado dashboard that replaced the old square dash, and Mk4 style modern door handles. These changes were carried over to all future facelifts of the Mk2. OEM plus indeed.
Two other major facelifts followed, until the final Jetta Mk2 was built in 2012.