1985 Volkswagen Jetta from North America


My Jetta is a great ride


The fuel pump went. I am trying to locate parts and diagrams of the fuel system.

General Comments:

I love my 1985 Jetta, and hope my hubby figures out the problem with the fuel system.

A great ride; it goes anywhere. I just love it, because it is fun.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 24th June, 2008

1985 Volkswagen Jetta 1.8 gas fuel injection from North America


Car is super, easy to work on and great on fuel


Front end has needed attention at around 289000 miles. Installed struts, ball joints, cv-shafts, inner and out tie rods, lower control arms. This will keep the girl going for a long time.

General Comments:

This has been a great car, handles super and gets 36.7 miles per gallon on the highway and over all driving between 29 and 34 miles per gallon.

Car now has over 294000 miles on her and is driven every day.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 22nd June, 2008

1985 Volkswagen Jetta Diesel 1.6 diesel from North America


OUTSTANDING reliability and economy!


Turn signals did not work when I bought the car. They magically fixed themselves shortly after, and haven't failed since.

4-way flashers never worked. Did not investigate enough to fix them because I don't care.

Glow plug light works erratically, but the glow plugs themselves work exactly as they should.

A previous owner bypassed the radiator fan control and installed a manual switch to turn on the fan. I have to remember to turn it on myself when the engine warms up. I also have to remember to turn it off when I stop the engine, otherwise the battery will drain. Been too lazy to fix it because it doesn't bother me enough.

There was no radio in the car when I bought it. I have yet to fill that empty hole with a head unit. I don't think there are even any speakers in the car.

General Comments:

This is the most economical car I've ever owned. I usually get 800km to 1000km per 55 liter tank. And I'm a rather "spirited" driver.

However, being a "spirited" driver means that this car will never be exciting to drive. Top speed is about 110km/h, and at that speed the engine is revving at a ridiculous level.

The acceleration reminds me of snail races we used to play when I was a kid. Passing another car on a two-lane road is a scary proposition, especially if the other car is going faster than 90 km/h. I usually end up just slowing down to follow slower drivers. At stop-lights, I frequently get out-accelerated by large diesel trucks and buses.

But the engine sure is reliable! It starts every time, no hesitation. I can literally count how many turns it takes for the engine to catch.

As a spare car, this is a perfect vehicle. And at $500, it was a great bargain. Especially considering the running cost, which is near-zero.

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

Review Date: 23rd November, 2005

1985 Volkswagen Jetta 1.6 diesel from North America


It's the best old car I've ever owned.


I replaced the engine at 470000 km, but discovered upon tear down that the problem was only a stuck ring because it had been sitting for a couple years before I bought it.

I replaced the transmission at 590000km, but was well impressed that it had lasted that long.

I've replaced every steering and suspension part over the last 8 years, but they are holding out well.

I replaced the interior because it was trashed when I bought the car.

The only thing I have had to replace repeatedly has been the rear brakes (about every 2 years).

General Comments:

The body has never been painted and still has very little rust.

It has only left me stranded once in the last 8 years (due to a frozen fuel filter).

My only complaint is that is a 2 door.

I plan on getting at least a million kilometres out of it.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 30th March, 2004

26th Aug 2005, 17:10

I have a 2 door '85 with 354,000 miles. I love the fact that it's a 2-door! The rear seat doesn't fold down, but the doors are big enough to fit bigger cargo in the back seat. The 2 door handles better than the 4 door by the virtue of having a stiffer structure. I change the fuel filter once a year and just replaced the main pump for the first time in the 20 years I've had it!! It's only been on a tow truck once. Right outer cv joint 2 years ago. I had the head rebuilt last year only because it was off to change the gasket! Bottom end is all original except for the oil pump. Uses NO oil. Original clutch lasted 234,000 miles!!!

2nd Oct 2006, 21:23

Update: Just rolled over 710,000 kms. Still working great. It gave me 48 mpg on a recent 600 mile road trip at approximately 140 km/h all the way. I think it's going to make it to the 1,000,000 km mark!

20th Jan 2017, 15:07

Well, it made it to 756,000 kms when the head gasket blew and I decided to take it off the road to give it a proper paint job. That was 9 years ago and it's still waiting.