2001 Volkswagen Jetta gls 2.0 115hp from North America


Not as bad as everyone seems to think


The only thing that has gone wrong with this car thus far is that the starter needed to be replaced (it was covered under warranty).

General Comments:

As of yet, I have not experienced problems with this car. I have owned the car for nearly two years and the car is about 6 years old and has over 90000 miles on it.

The car's fuel efficiency is good and it handles well. It has the feeling of a more expensive car with it's nicely designed interior.

In addition, I must note that I do take care of my car. I don't see the plastic parts of the car breaking as has been stated in other reviews. Moreover, it seems very apparent to me that most of the issues people have with this car are that mainly insignificant parts that need replacement and that some of the cars in general are lemons. VW obviously needs to put a greater emphasis on quality problems in manufacturing and dealership service issues. However, they make great cars and with these issues resolved, hopefully future VW's will not have such overwhelmingly poor reviews.

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

Review Date: 24th September, 2006

2nd Oct 2006, 16:50

Oh I just have to comment on your statement about the issues being trivial things. How I wish that was true! Lets talk about heated seats catching fire. Or computers crashing. Or turbos dying. Or dealers selling parts that are not needed to unwitting customers. It all depends on your perspective. If you owned an A3 VW you grew used to cheap, reliable transport and this car is a rude awakening. If you drove an Intrepid you are probably not too shocked by the reliability. A quick survey of owners in my area shows problems start around 160,000 km (100k miles). Things seem to hold up fairly well until then. You have been lucky and may continue to be lucky... Or not. Hold on tight though because when this car starts to come undone it really goes south fast, and takes your wallet with it! I owned a Toyota so I am very bitter about VW, as I expect quality to be built in not added on afterward.

2001 Volkswagen Jetta GLS TDI 1.9 diesel from North America


I love so many things about this car, but I have lost all respect for VW and will not buy another.


Check engine light on within days of purchase.

Car dies for no apparent reason. Dealer no help. Works fine for them. Drive for first six months praying it won't die in traffic.

Car dies again and then again and again... but restarts grudgingly.

Car hard to start. Lots of smoke. Car dies totally at one year of ownership. Dealer has car two weeks. No help. Tow car from dealer to independent vw specialist. Problem diagnosed within 24 hours as main computer problem.

Send car to dealer to have security codes flashed onto new computer. Dealer can't do it. Independent VW specialist drives to dealer and shows them how!

Car now at 240,000 km done on power badly. Foolishly give dealer one last try. Need new turbo for $2,000. Decline and put in mass air sensor for $75.00 and five minutes work in my driveway. Problem solved.

240,000km wipers die. Dealer wants $350.00. I take them apart and clean and lube the spindles. Have to repeat this about twice a year it seems.

Car dies in dead of winter (-20 c) on way home from work. $150.00 to tow. VW shop (not dealer) finds corroded ground under battery.

250,000 hit pothole and lose belly pan from under engine. Oil pan is so low to the ground I dent the pan. VW shop has three cars in with blown engines after owners hit ruts or ice and break pan, losing all oil.

260000km and cd player stops working. Also radio reception very poor. Replace antenna with after market. Radio back.

260,000km replace glow plug wire harness with after market to correct check engine light.

Check engine light on again. car runs fine and I'm ignoring it. I'm spending no more on this car.

General Comments:

The car is so nice to drive when it works.

The dealer I have locally is useless. It's as though they have never seen a VW in their lives. Without the help of my local VW specialist I would have rid myself of this car ages ago.

Which is the other problem. VWs depreciate at an unbelievable rate. I was fed up after one year of ownership and the best offer I had was for 1/4 of the price I paid. So I have kept the car.

Car has now at 270000 km and no major issues for 10 months and counting. Getting 60 mpg!

I consider myself lucky. I found an excellent mechanic, and compared to other owners I know I haven't lost too much money yet.

Not a car for the faint of heart, or mechanically uninclined.

Reliability and bad dealer service is going to kill VW.

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

Review Date: 19th September, 2006

16th Jan 2007, 11:14

270,000km's on a single car. A few things are going to go wrong. My girlfriend is in the exact same car they have had similar problems, but you can't beat 50+ MPG. She's got just over 250k's on it and it runs a little weak. Never thought of the Mass air flow sensor. We got the same answer from the dealer that the turbo was on it's last leg. Good car none the less, but there are definitely bugs in the system. Buy a newish one with less than 60,000 with a good service record if you want a car like this.

7th Apr 2009, 13:00

This is an update to the original comment. The car in question is still in my possession. Reason being it is completely worthless. Really! Not even an offer after it was fixed and running fine. The word is out apparently that VW's are not reliable. In the meantime I have replaced the computer. Then left on the side of the road again. My independent mechanic tore the car apart to find a frayed wire behind the dash. Not correctly installed at factory. Replaced antennae numerous times. Trunk latch failed. Hood latch failed repeatedly. Won't bore you with the numerous other small failures.

Finally the engine let go. Apparently this is common in TDI's. The soot builds up in the manifold and gets sucked into the engine, which locks and bends the connecting rods. This has been seen by my mechanic over and over again. In fact TDI engines are hard to find used for this reason. Over $4000.00 to replace.

I must emphasize that I am an aircraft mechanic by trade and a car nut. This car is maintained religiously. No help. It continues to fall apart.

Be warned potential VW buyers, you are in for a world of misery with the A4 VW's. Buy with low miles and sell before you reach 200,000 km (if you must have one), which seems to be when things go south.