1997 Volkswagen Jetta GL 4 cylinder from North America
A decent starter car, reliable long-term, but expensive to repair and loses functionality of options
Every single person I know who has owned this "old" body style Jetta has found that multiple consistent problems--and I was no exception.
The door molding on both the driver's and passenger's side on the front falls off on its own. These are glued on over top of venting holes--each time the door is closed, a slight bit of air pressure exits through these holes and pushes on the molding from the backside, slowly loosening the grip of the glue. I would recommend going to an autorepair shop before you notice loosening, and ask them to remove the molding and replace it with autobody double-sided tape. If you wait too long, you will likely lose the molding while driving and it can be expensive to replace--and it no longer comes in matching colors so you would have to have an autobody shop paint it. Also, the longer it stays off, the more rust damage is posisble by the water that may enter your door through the now exposed holes. I don't remember the last time I saw a Jetta of this body style with all of its moldings still intact.
Also, this Jetta is known for having electrical problems. I intentionally got a car without power windows after hearing a friend could no longer use hers on her Jetta. Unfortunately, the doors are powered and are unreliable at best, non-functional frequently.
Don't purchase if you want a smooth quiet ride--it was not built for that.
I also found the lumbar support in the seats to be very uncomfortable and ill-fitting of my back.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No
Review Date: 15th July, 2003
16th Jul 2005, 17:25
Would anyone know where the door moldings can be purchased?
I lost the molding off of the front passenger side. I've scoured the internet and have found nothing, even E-bay.
I'm looking to sell my 1997 Jetta GT soon and would like to replace the molding to help retain some value.
Any help would be appreciated.