2001 Volkswagen Golf V5 170PS 2.3 petrol from UK and Ireland


Drives and sounds nice, but plenty of niggles


Fans stopped working on slow speed. Requires replacement of both fans at a cost of around £400.

Seized rear brake caliper.

Engine management fault (lambda sensor).

Worn front suspension bushes.

Plastic coating peeling off of interior plastics.

Handbrake button rattling.

Plenty of other rattles from the interior trim.

General Comments:

This car looks good and drives well, however reliability and build quality quality isn't all that great. My previous car was a BMW 5 series, and that was 100% reliable in the time I owned it despite being older and having covered more miles.

The car hasn't actually broken down, but I have had plenty of annoying niggles. VW's reputation would have you believe they are better than they really are.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 22nd March, 2012

2nd Apr 2012, 16:51

I now have a mk4 Golf. It is my 15th Golf, and I have to say I am VERY disappointed with the plastic coatings interior wise. I am almost frightened to clean the interior, as it comes off with every polish. All the old cars came up fantastically, and it was a joy to see them after a good clean.

The metal round the seats is rusty, and even one of the seat belts has rust on it. COME ON, VW WHAT HAVE YOU DONE?? I am tremendously put off by your lack of care towards materials chosen in these fabulous cars, and would have to say I will be a little more cautious about buying another.

Over the years I have sung such high praises of the Golf, and have recommended it to almost everyone I have ever met. Needless to say, their selling figures must up, due partly to my admiration of this fantastic vehicle.

5th Apr 2012, 08:47

We have a 2002 GT TDI 130 Golf, which we've owned for 4 years. It's been near faultless mechanically, but I agree the interior plastics do not age well. As well as the peeling door handles, the fake leather has cracked and peeled off the gear lever gaiter, the centre console plastics have marked and scuffed with just normal use, and the whole lot creaks and rattles like it's done quarter of a million miles (it's actually done 120k).

As I said, mechanically it has been one of the most reliable vehicles I've ever owned, but the quality of the interior is nowhere near as good as the first impressions suggest.

In 4 years and 40k, I've changed a clutch and a CV gaiter. That has been the sum total of the mechanical issues, which I think is a good record for an older car with this mileage.

8th Aug 2012, 04:15

A further update.

The niggles continue. Have needed a replacement fuel pump, front suspension top mounts, rear suspension top mounts, 4 new shock absorbers, and the driver's side electric rear window has stopped.

I also have a rattle coming from inside the exhaust, a fuel smell in the cabin when the heater is on, and the immobiliser sometimes won't let the car start until I remove the key and re-insert it.

All this is on a very nice condition, well looked after car with a full history and less than 100,000 miles. I can only imagine what a neglected one would be like.

2001 Volkswagen Golf 2.0 liter from North America


Quote from the mechanic "you know you've got a gremlin here, right?" AKA piece of junk


I loved this car until it hit about 100K.

The engine light comes on at least once a month (generally costing about 2-500 a pop). This time around it came on twice within one week. With different issues. It would cost us $1000 to fix it all. Can't even enumerate all the issues here. NOT WORTH IT. We are regulars at the mechanics - they have a running joke about how terrible this car is, and say they have us on speed dial. No kidding. It's that bad.

The glove box on the Golf broke within 2 years (won't close), and we were told it would cost over $400 to fix it. $4 bungee cord works pretty well...

I have a 1994 Saturn that has run way way way better than this car. It cost me approximately 20K less to purchase, and has cost significantly less to keep and maintain.

General Comments:

I wish someone had warned me about these cars before I bought mine, or I'd read reviews like these.

Dealer said GTI models don't have all these issues. Golf parts for this year were outsourced; now they aren't and they are built differently, so they don't have the same problems.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 9th August, 2010

10th Aug 2010, 16:51

Don't believe what in VW circles are called the "Stealers".