1998 Volkswagen Jetta GLX from North America - Comments

23rd Jul 2001, 09:32

I own a Jetta GLX also. It seems every time I take it to get the oil changed there is another maintenance problem. My check engine light is always on. I've replaced the secondary emissions pump which cost me $645.00 and it is not working again. I've spent around $3000 dollars in repairs not including normal maintenance. I don't believe I will be buying another VW anytime soon either.

6th May 2002, 20:27

I too own a 1998 Volkswagen Jetta and have the same moulding issue. I understand that VW has changed from the peel and stick ones to ones that are more permanent - what an admission of a design flaw. I am looking to sell the car and have two recently replaced mouldings needing repair. I plan on gathering up all these comments and having the work done for free. We will see!

27th May 2002, 21:23

I have a 1998 Jetta GLX also. This is my third VW. I also have a 1986 Cabriolet and had a 1987 Jetta GL which I sold to get the "new and improved" Jetta. I have to agree the quality of the VW cosmetics had dropped significantly especially with the Jetta III. I also agree with a previous poster's contention it is due to where these particular cars are made.

One of my mouldings has also fallen off too and I'd say more than 1/2 the Jetta III's I pass on any given street are missing at least one moulding. My troubles didn't stop there...

My check engine light comes on every time it rains and stays on a few days sometimes for weeks. Sometimes the car runs rough when the engine light is on even though I have been faithfully changing the oil every 3,000 miles (remember how the dealer wouldn't change it what often for free when our warranties were still in effect? And don't get me started on the odd style oil filter no quickie lube place stocks!! I love paying $30 more for an oil change than any other person I know!!) and the dealer tells me "there is nothing wrong we can see so it's nothing to worry about."

My power windows are shot. I have been afraid to tell the dealer and have it looked at fearing the cost to repair. The only window I can still put down is the pass front, and I have to reach over to the button on that door to open and close it!

Some other gripes:

Who has found a cup from any fast food joint that fits in the cup holders? They are can holders at best.

Tires for this puppy are not cheap and they are not easily found at your local tire guy.

Why does my cigarette lighter end up in the back seat if I don't catch it on the way out?

My Bose system barely picks up my local stations anymore and the changer skips and scratches all my CD's.

I like the car, but there are some serious flaws, with the Jetta III's especially, I think VW should step up and admit to and offer to repair for us good folks who bought their products. Once I got that first 1987 Jetta I swore I'd never buy another brand (and that car had 165,000 miles when I bought it) now I'm not sure I can say that with confidence. I'm also thinking of selling mine.

3rd Oct 2002, 14:18

For all the loose door moldings:

1) Tear them off.

2) Remove residual tape adhesive from door (s) and Molding (s)

3) Clean all surfaces with Isopropyl Alcohol.

4) Bond on moldings with 3M super weatherstrip adhesive (black) per directions on the tube.

5) Forget about loose moldings.

6) Cost is $5 for glue and 1 hour of your time.

For the flying cigarette lighter:

1) Quit smoking.

31st Mar 2003, 10:31

I am having an odd problem with my 1998 Jetta GLX. At random times the ABS light and brake light will come on and the AC/blower fan won't work at all. This happens when the vehicle is started and won't stop until turned off and then restarted. Sometimes the problem is fixed when vehicle is turned off and restarted, other times it isn't. I would think it could be a brake problem other than the fact that the AC and fan won't come on either. Has anyone had a similar problem?

3rd Apr 2003, 09:58

I will have to agree with the comments on the cosmetic problems of the car. I own a 98 glx, I bought it when it had around 47,000 miles, the previous owner had problems with the windows that where fixed by the dealer. It has around 78,000 after owning it for about a year and a half iv' only replaced one molding, but the others are starting to look like they need replacing, no other problems with the car so far. All and all I love my car, it has great pick up, with its stock engine, it can burn most supped up Honda's and some mustangs. It rides as smooth as a baby, I added a OBD2 performance chip which gives better response and pick up and improves mpg. So I will be buying me another VW.

14th May 2003, 11:17

I have owned my 1998 Jetta Wolfsberg for a year and half now, it has 72,000 kms on it and had 47,000 when I bought it. In that time the transmission has been rebuilt, side moulding fall off, both rear window motors replaced, steering wheel bearing replaced and it currently has a noise coming from the drivers side front wheel when turning right. To date there has been over $3000 (cdn) worth of repairs done to the car, on top of the $17,900 It cost me. (Could have bought a new one for that price). I too have no confidence when dealing with my local Volkswagen dealer, when I took the car in last for a front wheel noise they told me it was the transmission and rebuilt it ($1800), noise is still there. I can say it will be a long time before buying another Volkswagen.

Does anyone know how to find out what is standard equipment on a Wolfsberg edition for 1998...?

Drop me an email to Limeyfish@hotmail.com.

10th Jul 2003, 19:43

I just bought a 98 jetta glx. I love the look, it def is a sweet car. I just bought it and I started it in the morning 2 days later and it started really rough. Then it stalled and the engine light came on. Any one experience the same thing? Or what about shifting in reverse, IT jumps a little and sounds like its grinding the gears. I have 40,000 miles on it and it is in mint condition. Hopefully I didn't buy a lemon. does anyone have any comments? Help!!!

27th Aug 2003, 15:44

I have a 98 Jetta GLX VR-6. It has been a good fun car. Bought it with 81,000 on it now has 102,000. Side moldings have detached. I used brake cleaner to wipe down the inside of the molding and door. Used shoe goo to adhere the molding. Cures overnight and is a permanent fix. Oil changes are easy. You can do it in half an hour. The six does take 5 liters of oil with the filter change, but that's a small price to pay for the V6 power and fun. Use Mobil 1 10/30 and change every 6,000 miles.

Replaced timing chain and tensioner at 98000 and while transmission was out (must be removed to replace chain), had new clutch installed. Timing chain/tensioner on VR6 needs to be replaced between 60 and 100k miles. It depends on how hard the car is driven. Mine was upgraded to a 2000 "improved version" chain. It is worth it to have an experienced technician listen for a loose tensioner/chain. If it goes, a rebuilt VR6 will run you 5 to 6 thousand. I love the car. It is quick, nimple and really fun to drive. Had an Olds Cutlass Ciera and a Ford F150 prior to this car. Minor problems on the VW compared to the American cars. Find a good after market repair shop. Local dealer is nice, but unreliable. They did the gas filler recall fix and there is now a rattle.

The GLX VR-6 is not an econo car. It is a sports sedan. If you want an econo car buy the 2 litre four cylinder Jetta GL.

I'd buy another Jetta. Go test drive the 03 VW GLS with the 200hp VR-6 and a 6 speed transmission! Wow! Better yet drive a Jetta with the 1.8L turbo 4!