15th Sep 2009, 17:54

The 1.8T needs to have the proper spark plug gap in order to function properly. If you gap the plugs at 0.031" like the manual states then the coils should be fine for a good 100k. Turbo engines need a small spark plug gap to make spark at 4-5PSI boost. Otherwise the plug will extinguish, the coil will have to absorb the arc energy, and the high voltages generated will eventually break down the coil. Not that anyone is at fault, but I would remove all coils and replace the plugs with the correct gap on platinum plugs, and measure your old plugs. Also coils at auto part stores are cheap. $35 for part number C1394 at Autozone, and Kragen is $25 (not sure of the part number. Hope this helps someone.

23rd Nov 2009, 14:50

Get over it guys. Don't go and buy a VW if you're not ready to fix it. It's a VW THING, You have to love them to keep them. I spent at least 10 thousand on my car and still love the thing. It's a 03 VW GTI 1.8t. Did a lot of mods also, and you think you have problems just with a stock 1.8t, jeezzz I went thru about 20 coils.

7th Dec 2009, 15:49

I have a 2002 Jetta GLS 1.8 turbo 5 speed standard. I bought it with 59,000 on it and I used it to commute from PA to CT. A 400 mile trip three times a month for 4 years. It has never needed anything but brakes, tires, timing belt, plugs and Mobile 1. It now has 150,00 miles on it and is going strong. It must be that all the people with out problems just have nothing to blog about.

5th Mar 2010, 22:03

I am yet another victim. I have 2004 Jetta 1.8T GLS and had maaaanyyyy problems with it.

Most of these issues happened still under warranty, otherwise I would have donated the car to NPR a while ago. VW is too expensive.

1- Drivers window fixed twice, not once twice, then passenger window... unbelievable but true.

2- AC would cool enough. Got it fixed, but then happened again six months later. Took it again to the dealership (by the way the do not give a sh.. once you buy the car) and was fixed. Believe it or not, months later I had to go back and it took them 4-5 days to fix my AC for 3rd time. Like as if they had no idea where the AC was.

3- While under warranty, the coolant temperature light had to be fixed.

4- I had to go because of coil problem. Finally got on board with the VW recall, and they replaced the coil. Well if I count the number of problems, it could go on and on. But here are few I can remember.

5- All 4 coils replaced as a recall.

6- Large spring found under drivers seat, and they had a hard time figuring out where it came from; I am not joking... and the thing measures 15 inches long, and they were clueless for a while, but then fixed. Then later it fell again, and I just gave up with this.

7- Monsoon speakers probably made in a cheap china factory... now they sound terrible.

8- Battery went dead and had to be towed to the dealership that was closed (Sunday) because the f... ing battery is buried inside the engine. My neighbor is a fireman and even with his multiple megatools, we could not get it out to replace it with one I had bought from Walmart.

9- Brake lights and tail light require a new bulb monthly... it's ridiculous.

10- Both headlight bulbs replaced, and they fog, dealer unable to fix fogging on one headlight.

11- Peeling of the soft lack rubber cover around inside handles and other parts of the car.

12- 60K and gone through 2 sets of tires... tiring no?

I called Volkswagen customer service and made several complaints, but they were completely unwilling to help.

I hate to say it, as it's a beautiful car, but I'll never buy another VW. It is a VERY EXPENSIVE CAR for all the pain you have to go through.

27th May 2010, 00:34

2002 Jetta GLI.






Coil on plugs.

WTF, should have kept my 95 Jetta with no problems. Off to VW to see if I can get the coil on plugs replaced since they went. Disappointing; love the car and how it drives, but I should have bought something else for the cost. Stick to Japanese.

15th Jun 2010, 04:52

2003 Jetta 1.8T GLS.

I bought it used about a year ago, can't believe I still have it. What a headache.

Just about everything that's already been listed, I've experienced with this car.

It's always something with this car. I would highly recommend not buying one.

13th Sep 2010, 09:10

2002 1.8T Jetta GLS.

I've had most of the mentioned problems, however I bought my car with 93K on it and it was fine up until 180K. I am not sure what the previous owner experienced prior to the 93K but I understand why they got rid of it.

Recently however, my car has have a very rough time starting (not every time, but every other time you turn the car on). I have experienced a flashing CEL off and on and have not got it looked at. Does anyone know what this could be?

When I had the coils replaced by recall in the Spring of 2010 they said there was a detection of the air intake problem, but to have it diagnosed they wanted more money (of course).

Is there an easy way to find out what's wrong and what/where to go to fix it?



20th Sep 2010, 12:47

I've had this car since new. After having owned 5 VW Jettas in the past, my advice to anyone looking to buy one is this: With the new VWs you kind of need to be a little bit mechanically inclined to own one of these cars. Otherwise expect some large repair bills.

The most common issues with this car are:

- Ignition coils, there are 4, one on each plug. About $30 per coil. I've replaced all 4 since the car was new. No big deal, about 2 minutes per plug to replace.

-Timing belt/water pump. This NEEDS to replaced about every 60,000miles/100,000kms. This is an interference engine, and these belts and tensioners are known to go after 60,000 miles. Neglecting to do this repair could result in total engine failure.

-Maf sensors should be removed and cleaned every so often to ensure they last.

-Window regulator clips break allowing windows to drop into door panels. Not too common, but it happens. The clips are cheap and easy to replace. I've never had one break on my car.

There's not too many problems with these cars. The engines are rock solid, and will last forever with proper oil changes. Like all cars, even Toyotas and Hondas, they will have their share of problems! The problem is, if you can't do some of the work yourself, VWs tend to be expensive to repair at the stealerships.

I would gladly buy another one of these cars! They have fantastic power bands, get good fuel mileage, are very comfortable and have top notch interiors. If you keep up with the regular maintenance you shouldn't have any more problems than most cars.