One of the key attributes needed to be a successful auto journalist is the ability to be repeatedly asked by dozens of friends, family members and total strangers on Facebook acquaintances what car they should buy. And then have all of your hard thought advice totally ignored. Again and again. Being in my mid-thirties, many of my friends are having babies and realizing that their hand-me-down beater two-doors just ain’t kid friendly. Or the all important “safe.” Of course being in Los Angeles, they’re also worried about planet earth, too. And because they’re all retired hipsters NO MINIVANS! In other words they want something large that gets good gas mileage and lets others know they’re (still) cool. I’ve so far recommended the 2009 Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen TDI to two people, because if you want a large (and therefore presumed to be “safe”), kid-friendly car that gets excellent gas mileage, the Jetta SportWagen TDI is really your best bet.