The car has spent a cumulative total of 1 year in the shop (and sitting out in front of my house because it would not go) out of 4 years of ownership.
The entire air conditioning system was replaced at 50K.
The cooling fan motor replaced at 50K.
The mass air flow sensor was replaced twice (once at the cost of VW).
The oxygen sensor was replaced two times (once at the cost of VW).
The rear brake light switch broke at 45K and needed to be replaced.
Small pieces of interior trim keep falling off.
At 55K the car would not start when the outside temperature fell below 30 F. The dealer said this was a common problem he had been seeing, had no idea why, and recommended I just wait until the weather warmed up!
The rear and front brakes needed to be replaced at 25K, and were triple the price of my last car.
The rear breaks needed to be replaced at 45K and again at 60K.
The air bag light came on at 65K and the mechanic cannot determine why. He said that air bags system "appears" to be fine, and would like to see it again if the light does not go out on its own in 5K.
The check engine light comes on every 5K for about 500 miles and then goes off (mechanic cannot determine the reason).
Failed emissions after owning the car for three years (40K).
It goes through about a quart of oil every 600 miles for some unknown reason.
The car alarm will go off for no reason, and the mechanic cannot find the problem.
The left front wheel well guard fell off while I was driving at 65K.
The interior lights will sporadically go out for no reason, and then come back on a few days later (The dealer claims it is "just one of those VW electrical gremlins that makes owing this car unique").
None of these repairs and problems (diagnostic appointments are what they were billed as) were covered under the extended 100K mile 10 year "all inclusive" warranty.
This car was fun to drive on short trips (under 30 minutes) when it was running properly, however, the seats start to feel uncomfortable after driving for longer than this. This is something that you cannot get a good felling for if you go on the typical 10 minute test drive. Furthermore, lately it seems that every time I have driven the car something goes wrong with it. So it now gives me an anxiety attack every time I step foot in it.
Just out of my own curiosity I have calculated the amount I have spent on general maintenance (oil changes, tires, brakes, etc.), and repairs (a/c, sensors, diagnostics). It has come to an out of pocket expense that is more than what I paid for the car in the first place! This does not include the price of gas at 34 mpg (which is the one thing I am pleased about with this car).