1988 Volkswagen Golf Reviews - Page 6 of 6

1988 Volkswagen Golf GTi 8v 1.8 petrol from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture1988
First year of ownership1999
Most recent year of ownership2001
Engine and transmission 1.8 petrol Manual
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 5 / 10
Dealer Service marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 6 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
6.8 / 10
Distance when acquired76000 miles
Most recent distance82000 miles

Summary:

Great fun, reliability and value - puts a smile on my face every time!

Faults:

Driver's door leaked due to a broken seal. The seal had been broken by a poorly fitted after-market alarm system.

Brake calipers replaced due to 'rusted beyond recovery' brake bleed nipple. The brake fluid had not been changed for several years by the previous owner.

General Comments:

A cult car with a huge following - loads of clubs and support. Answers to any questions are easily found as are spare parts.

Always feels like you're going faster than you are, involving and fun to drive.

Insurance can be more than you think, especially if the car has been modified like mine (lowered, alloys, badge-less grille, exhaust).

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 26th July, 2001

1st Aug 2001, 05:11

Not sure I agree on the 5/10 for comfort - feels like you're riding on iron wheels.

1988 Volkswagen Golf Base 1.3 from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture1988
First year of ownership1998
Most recent year of ownership2001
Engine and transmission 1.3 Manual
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 5 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 4 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
6.3 / 10
Distance when acquired93000 miles
Most recent distance124000 miles
Previous carFord Fiesta

Summary:

A good car for young drivers

Faults:

Fuel pump decided to fall apart.

The sump had a hole in it.

The springs in the driver`s seat broke.

Ball joints failed causing major handling problems.

Float in the carburetor became porous.

I could not engage 2nd gear.

General Comments:

For a 1.3 this car can shift. I drive it hard, but it still keeps going.

I have had 110mph out of it.

The boot is ideal with huge amounts of storage space.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 13th July, 2001

1988 Volkswagen Golf GTD 1.9 turbo diesel intercooler from Portugal

Year of manufacture1988
First year of ownership2000
Most recent year of ownership2001
Engine and transmission 1.9 turbo diesel intercooler Manual
Performance marks 10 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
9.5 / 10
Distance when acquired196000 kilometres
Most recent distance201000 kilometres

Summary:

It's a very good car!

Faults:

The car isn't new so minor things had to be checked out, like oil, brakes, direction and motor.

The car came with a 1.6 turbo diesel motor, I've changed to a 1.9 turbo diesel and added an intercooler.

One thing this car used to have broken is the lights switch. I had to change mine and I know lots of other cars that have that switch broken.

General Comments:

It's a car for all purposes! Very comfortable (original Recaro seats), very fast and very stable in curves. It never let me down...

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 2nd April, 2001

1988 Volkswagen Golf CL 1.6 from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture1988
First year of ownership2000
Most recent year of ownership2000
Engine and transmission 1.6 Manual
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.5 / 10
Distance when acquired68542 miles
Most recent distance75992 miles
Previous carToyota Corolla

Summary:

An affordable, fast and reliable car

Faults:

1) Nothing serious, except for clutch change at 50,000 miles and new exhaust at 60,000, but these were due to wear.

2) Developed a noisy hydraulic tappet noise just after purchase, but cost £50 to fix and runs smooth now, a bit of a juddery tickover though.

3) Rear driver door seals letting in water during rain and car washing.

General Comments:

A brilliant car, cost £1000 to buy and the running costs are not that high. Non-PAS steering a bit heavy at low speeds.

Fantastic performance for a car of its size, though the body roll may get a bit excessive.

Overall, it's a great car.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 11th December, 2000

1988 Volkswagen Golf GTi 8V 1.8 petrol from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture1988
First year of ownership2000
Most recent year of ownership2000
Engine and transmission 1.8 petrol Manual
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Dealer Service marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 9 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.2 / 10
Distance when acquired93000 miles
Most recent distance94500 miles
Previous carToyota MR2 Turbo

Summary:

Solid, reliable motoring

Faults:

Well, nothing so far. Alright, I'll admit I've only done 1,500 miles but before my MR2 Turbo I had 5 Mk2 GTi's in a row and they were all fantastic.

Common problems though have included:

1) Idle stabilisation valve gives up. This can be rectified temporarily by cleaning the valve with carb cleaner but eventually £75 has to go to Mr. VW.

2) Crunchy 2nd gear.

3)Leaky rocker cover gasket.

4) Noisy hydraulic tappets.

5) Faulty distributor unit.

General Comments:

I think the fact that I sold my 240bhp MR2 Turbo in favour of a 1988 Golf GTi says it all really. I don't think there is any other mass produced car with the reliability, build quality and longevity available for the price. And if they are kept maintained and serviced the depreciation will be next to nothing.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 23rd August, 2000

10th Apr 2001, 08:41

Use synthetic oil in the gearbox, it really helps the crunchy second gear.

1988 Volkswagen Golf GTi 1.8 petrol from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture1988
Engine and transmission 1.8 petrol
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Dealer Service marks 6 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 7 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.6 / 10

Faults:

Nothing much. I've had it 9 years with no major problems except a main bearing oil seal.

Body work has deteriorated more than most Golfs - probably my fault for not looking after it well enough!

General Comments:

Amazingly reliable after 130,000 miles.

Brilliant to drive. Pity it didn't have power steering though!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 23rd January, 2000

1988 Volkswagen Golf GTi 8v 1.8 Digifant from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture1988
Engine and transmission 1.8 Digifant
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Dealer Service marks 5 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 7 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.6 / 10

Faults:

Head gasket went. Fixed in 2 days.

Electric window played up a little, then stopped. Handbrake wasn't that effective.

Alternator went south!

General Comments:

I'm getting a 16v! This car is a REAL drivers car, oozing with appeal due to its rugged driving. Who cares that it has no power steering - the steering felt much more pleasurable. Feels like you're driving very hard.

Pricey second hand too.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 31st May, 1999

1988 Volkswagen Golf CL 1.3 petrol from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture1988
Engine and transmission 1.3 petrol
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 6 / 10
Dealer Service marks 2 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 4 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
5.0 / 10

Faults:

Bad rust on rear tailgate. Apart from that it's pretty bombproof.

General Comments:

Excellent handling and brakes, surprisingly spacious inside. I'm quite shocked that I like it. Average engine. Headlights are garbage, my motorcycle gives better vision at night.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 18th May, 1998

Average review marks: 7.3 / 10, based on 27 reviews