1999 Volkswagen GTI Reviews

1999 Volkswagen GTI from North America

Model year1999
Year of manufacture1999
First year of ownership2000
Most recent year of ownership2004
Engine and transmission Automatic
Distance when acquired25000 miles
Most recent distance160000 miles
Previous carToyota Camry

Summary:

This car is Junk!

Faults:

1999 VW GTI I have replace the oil pan 4 times at $400 a whack. I have factory suspension on the car and it has not been modified. Today I hit a softball sized rock on a perfectly paved road and cracked the pan again for the 5th time resulting in a seized engine. Buyer beware, these cars are too low to the ground and the aluminum oil pan will crack hitting almost any object (unlike steel that would dent), even hard snow has cracked the oil pan.

General Comments:

Don't buy one of these cars, look for a car with higher ground clearance and/or a steel oil pan. Stupid German engineering, designing a car so low to the ground with an aluminum oil pan. And they know it, the dealer says they stock these pans because the replace them frequently.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 20th September, 2004

24th Sep 2004, 01:47

It's not designed to hit anything, even a cat.

The oil pan is needed because the engine is running hot and also save weight.

The small clearence is needed for dynamics. If you need a truck to chase dogs or bears or buffaloes this car is not suitable.

16th Oct 2004, 19:44

Wow- You honestly need to buy another car and give me yours. Cause you do not deserve to own a car like this.

20th Feb 2008, 21:07

The oil pan cracked 5 times because you obviously don't pay attention and ran over large objects, not because the car was poorly designed. I own a Gti and have never had a problem with the oil pan and my car in no way is a piece of junk.

1999 Volkswagen GTI GLX 2.8 VR6 from North America

Year of manufacture1999
First year of ownership1999
Most recent year of ownership2003
Engine and transmission 2.8 VR6 Manual
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Dealer Service marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 6 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.0 / 10
Distance when acquired40 miles
Most recent distance54300 miles
Previous carHonda Prelude

Summary:

A sports car that delivers impressive utility

Faults:

Initially, this car troubled me by illuminating the on-board "check engine" light thus requiring several trips to the dealer's service center to successfully diagnose the fault. It turned out to be a sensor that had failed and there never was a problem with the engine. The bad sensor was replaced and the light extinguished. One year later the same thing happened so I think that VW needs to re-engineer this sensor.

As previously mentioned, VW has a problem with their window lift mechanisms. The connectors that secure the glass to the lift assembly are made from plastic and are prone to breakage. VW has since reissued replacements made of a light alloy and all 2003 and newer models are coming from the factory with the improved, metal parts. If you were to consider buying any used Golf or Jetta from this period, you should check for and replace the plastic clips when it is convienient for you and not when they decide to break.

I also damaged my oil pan, but my car had been re-fitted with lowering springs. I do not recall any special problems driving the car with the factory suspension.

General Comments:

I cringe whenever I read someone refer to this car as a "sports" car. It is a hatchback and as such, is a practical car first and foremost. That VW has planted the VR6 engine in it makes it a very sporty practical car, but it is still not in league with Prelude, Boxster, or Integra in the sporting category. The GTI is far more useful and user friendly than any of these cars and the VR6 gives it the pulling power to keep up with or even pass some of them.

The car is fabulously appointed with modern luxury bits unlike any I would have expected from VW, especially in their Golf line. I am particularly fond of the heated leather seats, especially since moving to Germany.

The fit and finish is remarkable in this car. Everything is screwed or bolted firmly down and the body feels rigid and strong during all of the tight turns, braking, and hard accelerating I throw at it.

The 99-2000 GTI is not, in my opinion, a complete package. My initial impression was that the suspension was underdamped and too lightly sprung for a car that was marketed as the "sport" model of the Golf line. VW has since included an improved suspension package for its current GTI models, but I cannot comment on that equipment. However, the drive-train is fantastic. Strong, smooth, and reasonably efficient for what it delivers.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 20th March, 2003

1999 Volkswagen GTI GTi GLX 2.8 VR6 from North America

Year of manufacture1999
First year of ownership2002
Most recent year of ownership2003
Engine and transmission 2.8 VR6 Manual
Performance marks 10 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.5 / 10
Distance when acquired43000 miles
Most recent distance55000 miles
Previous carAcura Integra

Summary:

A High Perfromance Bargain

Faults:

My driver side window regulator broke. My driver side door handle broke.

General Comments:

This is a perfect car for a performance buff. Its quick on the low end and on the high end. Handles OK, but with a new suspension its the best. The cabin is very roomy leaving plenty of room for 5 passengers. The heated leather seats are just a plus when its cold out. Over all I give this car a 9/10.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 14th February, 2003

15th Oct 2006, 19:20

I also own a 99 GTI, my door handle broke and they want to charge me $400 bucks to fix it. Am I being ripped off? I feel like the door handle is something I could fix myself, especially since it seems to be a common problem.

1999 Volkswagen GTI VR6 V6 from North America

Year of manufacture1999
First year of ownership1999
Most recent year of ownership2003
Engine and transmission V6 Manual
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 4 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Dealer Service marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 4 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.0 / 10
Distance when acquired0 miles
Most recent distance29000 miles
Previous carMazda 626

Summary:

Prize fighter with a glass jaw

Faults:

Every window mechanism has failed, on separate occasions. This is endemic to all Volkswagens, but apparently they now have a fix.

I cracked the oil pan, $600, on a New York City pot hole.

I cracked the engine block, $8,000, driving off a curb in the Berkeley hills. Do not even consider driving off a curb with this car, you may get away with it 99 times and land wrong the 100th time. This sports car is like a prize fighter with a glass jaw.

General Comments:

Except for the front to rear weight distribution it specs like a Porsche Boxster. I've traded keys with BMW owners who paid twice what this car costs, and I prefer the GTI.

I love this car when it runs, but the fragile front end makes for a stormy relationship. I will seriously explore other options before buying a GTI again.

Perhaps the only sports-oriented sports car on the market? A pocket rocket where the mountain bike, snowboard rack looks like it belongs on the car.

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

Review Date: 8th January, 2003

Average review marks: 7.8 / 10, based on 4 reviews