1999 Volkswagen Jetta GLS 2.8 from North America


Poor reliability


Mass Air Flow sensor failed at 18,000 miles.

Fuel Pressure Sensor failed at 21,000 miles.

Coil failed at 28,000 miles

Rear brake pads were gone at 28,500 miles.

Paint is peeling off in chunks from left rear door sill.

Interior plastic parts melted and deformed on a hot summer day.

Cup holder has broken twice.

Glove compartment door hinges broke.

Front Passenger window fell into door at 33,000 miles.

Same window now goes down on its own accord. Won't go back up until sometime later.

Now EPC light is on and car won't go over 30 mph. According to manual this means that some engine electronics have failed.

General Comments:

Fun to drive and very quick. You hardly feel like you are doing 90mph.

Unfortunately the continuing electrical problems worry me to death. It is impossible to get a dealer appointment. I had to wait 10 days to get the car into the shop while it has been undrivable.

Would not buy another VW.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 3rd February, 2003

1999 Volkswagen Jetta TDI 1.9 turbo diesel from North America


Great millage and driver


Both front windows clips have broken twice, are starting to make cracking noizes again.

Many sensors have ahd to be replaced (Temp, Mass Airflow, Speed)

General Comments:

Stuff breaking all the time is a pain, but I still love my VW.

The car seems to have held up well, only a few small rust spots, which is good for a Michigan car.

The power is more than one would expect for the millage this car gets (~48).

If only there was a little more room in the back seat this would be an almost perfect car, front is just right and the trunk is very large (I was able to fit 4 computers, 2 monitors, a scanner, and several keyboards in easily.)

The controls are very very well laid out, better than most American cars, in my opinion.

I love the tight steering and great breaks, still on original pads. The 5 speed is easy to shift, shifter is with in easy reach.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 30th January, 2003

1999 Volkswagen Jetta GLS VR6 from North America




The day I drove the car off the lot I opened the sunroof and it wouldn't close. Straight back to the dealership for repairs on day two.

30,000 miles: Turned on ignition, placed foot on brake, and could not get the car out of park. Could not drive car. Cost: Recalled part- no cost to me except for time (2 weeks!).

Rolled driver side window down at 35,000 miles and it never came back up. Recall on clips that hold window. No cost to me except for time!

40,000 miles: Check engine light comes on. Dealer tells me I need to replace the Mass Air Flow Sensor. Sound familiar? Cost: $550 and time!

General Comments:

Although the overall cost of repairs for this car is low, it has cost me a lot of time and headache.

The brakes squeak continuously. Dealership tells me it is the type of breaks that I have and there is nothing to do to fix it (read: embarrassing).

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 13th January, 2003

11th May 2004, 11:57

Son has a 99 Jetta GLS and had a mass airflow sensor replaced recently under a warranty extension put out recently. See you had one replaced so you might want to check into this.

1999 Volkswagen Jetta GLS VR6 VR6 from North America


Junk and will never own another VW!



10/99: antenna base rotting out... not in stock asked to return. miles 15,600.

01/00: gas door broken- replaced fuel door actuator.

Antenna base now in stock- replace antenna.

Driver's door has water leak around door gasket at highway speeds in the rain- adjusted L/F door. Miles 18000.

03/00: Recall on trim covers.

4/01 (the fun really starts) : passenger side front window broken (probably been up and down 50 times!) and rear window intermittent!- replaced power window regulator in front and said rear OK, but in comments section tech added "if problem occurs again-will need a motor"...yeah, whatever. miles 27500, car is out of warranty (24k miles or 2 years). Tech, now the TECH told me to call VW customer care and get them to pay for because they have had many problems with them... do call, and VW pays for it.

04/01-12/01: Rear window breaks (you know the one they said was OK) - Motor replaced.

12/01: driver's side door window falls in-regulator cable broken, replaced regulator. miles 32041, again VW pays for it after a call. Dealer damaged window tint... frankly at this point I don't care.

Brakes are squeaking-VW dealer say OK...

05/02: A/C dies-dealer replaces, compressor, clutch, and 2 O-rings. Call to VW this time and a ton of hell raising yields a 50% coverage of parts. My total $560! Miles 37900.

08/02: Passenger window falls in again! Fixed with new aluminum clips (only took VW 3 years to redesign them). Miles 40700.

10/02 Front bumper repainted by dealer under warranty, because clear-coat chipping off. Driver's window falls in again! Fixed with new aluminum clips. 43200.

1/03 A/C insulation foam has come loose internally and will not be pulled into the fan when fan setting is either 3 or 4. Which in turns starts to shred the foam and send it all over the passenger compartment in very small pieces. 46000.

OK, now for stuff that has broken and I have not bothered to have fixed (this is a lease remember).

Both seat springs have broken out of seats in mid 2001 and the joke of a metal tab with them. Dash light for A/C controls died last year. Window control panel on driver's door started acting up about 5 months ago. Push for window to go down and sometimes it will go up. Push for window to go up and it will go down! This is if the window is only half up or down. Trunk light no longer works! CD Changer will now jam and you have to manually eject the cartridge to reset it.

Sunroof is possessed! Will tilt open when ever it feels like it! Park car go in house come out next morning and it will be tilted open!

Paint is chipping off the front of the roof where it meets the windshield. About, 6 inches long now. The metal trim piece between rear right window and quarter window is rusting (friend had this same problem too) on both sides!

Brakes still squeak. Rear right door has vibration noise and has for the past 2 years. Right front door has vibration noise now after the 3rd window regulator repair, tech says he doesn't hear it...whatever. The steering rack is starting to make clunking noise. The front headlights are so "checked" and "fogged" from exposure it isn't funny. Cheap plastic.

This POS is no better than a Yugo, hence my handle and to hell with a part recall there needs to be a car recall like the US gov. did to the Yugo.

I have owned other VW in the past they where both great cars, but this jetta is the biggest repair\junker it isn't funny. I read on another site some guy with a 1999 has spent $8000 in repairs (water pump go bad= engine went boom!) I WILL NEVER BUY ANOTHER VW! Blame it on VW for having the cars built in Mexico if you want, but they are junk!

General Comments:

Good things?

Exterior styling, blue and red dash lights. VR6 is peppy. Other than that there isn't anything. The seats are to narrow for someone 6' 210lbs = uncomfortable on long drives.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 9th January, 2003

18th Jun 2003, 13:38

This review was EXCELLENT. I've had almost every single one of those problems with my 1999 Jetta. Unfortunately, I own it. I'm so very very disappointed with VW.

15th Feb 2005, 00:34

I can't agree with you more! I have a 99 with over 90k miles. Ditto for the cup holders, the open rear ash tray, (and by the way, where is the lighter?), the floor mats, the many O2 replacements, and last year my engine blew up. VW replaced it, but due to the parts not being available, I had to wait over one month to get it back. Honestly, if they could give me what it's worth (and that may not be much) they could keep it. As I wrote in a letter to VW headquarters-this is not a family I enjoy being a part of.

Caveat emptor! Buyer beware!

22nd Dec 2009, 16:14

WOW! This is crazy, I thought I was the only one with these issues.

I have a 99 Jetta VR6, and had only heard what good cars VW's were... RIGHT... in 2 years of ownership I have had to replace O2 sensors, the intake manifold (because it blew off in a lovely explosion that sounded like a shot gun), hoses that were VW replaced that dry rotted in less than 6 months, I am struggling with the back drivers side window, because it no longer goes down from the drivers side, the alarm system when it is activated does not always go off and the alarm will sound (that's always nice in a parking lot full of people), I need a new throttle body... gosh what else...

Oh and I'll save the best for last; today when I went to unlock my car, to my surprise the key spun all the way around and didn't unlock, so now there's another thing to fix (when I can finally unlock it and get it to a dealer now).

28th Jan 2011, 23:21

I had a 2000 GTI GLX with the VR6 engine, and the only problem I had in 3 years were the window regulators breaking, which were covered by warranty... I've had 14 VWs, and this one is a blast to drive.. If you want a problem free car, buy a Honda..