24th Jan 2010, 14:02

I have a 2003 wagon automatic with 215,000 miles on it. I have to say I love the car. I have had it since new. Other than routine service, the only things I have done to it are one glow plug, one intake cleaning, one alternator (pulley exploded), one temp sensor, one set of brakes, 3 sets of tires, and one motor mount. I drive the car hard and it just keeps going.

4th May 2010, 12:48

As I write this, my 2001 Jetta TDI is in the shop with a blown engine. This is the second time in under 40,000 km I have had to scrap an engine and replace it.

The first time the intake manifold carboned up and the engine ingested some of it, bending the connecting rods.

This time the car went to full throttle without my foot on the throttle. By the time I shut off the key, it had destroyed the engine.

Now I know cars. Very well in fact. I work on aircraft engines and controls for a living, so I understand all about proper maintenance and all that good stuff. I buy the best parts and follow my maintenance religiously. But it doesn't help. This car is beyond hopeless. And the dealers! Don't even get me going! After the second time, they tried to tell me my turbo was "broken" I never went back (I replaced the MAF in 5 minutes for $75 and cured it).

Then there is the resale value. People ask big money but rarely get it.

Now, having said that, I love diesel engines and will buy another. Just not a VW. All the maintenance in the world won't help a poorly engineered/assembled car.

Subaru is talking of offering their diesel, so I'll hang in there until then.

If you are mechanically inclined and love cars, and are willing to spend the fuel savings on repairs, go for it, otherwise stick to a more reliable Japanese compact.

16th Jun 2010, 13:34

I bought my daughter a 2000 Jetta TDI last July with 256,000 miles. It now has 264,000 miles and I just replaced the alternator... I guess I got lucky, and the previous owner must have had all these issues taken care of... love the Jetta, and would buy another one tomorrow!!!

16th Sep 2010, 01:03

I've had my 2000 Jetta for almost 11 years and haven't had any problems with it.

I had to replace the clutch at 130,000 miles. Replaced the timing belt at 100,000 and 200,000 miles (routine maintenance). My trick... never go to the dealer. If I need a glow plug, I put in a glow plug, etc. My glove box hinge broke and I reattached it with a piece of metal.

Be creative and stop going to the dealer.

30th Oct 2010, 17:47

Hi Folks.

I bought a 2000 Jetta two years ago. It had 230,000 on it then. I now have 270,000 and no problems.

Yes, glove box broken, locks starting to act funny, glow plug code on reader, but other than that, it runs super.

I have been running very clean very filtered WVO for the last 30,000 K, and it doesn't seem to know the difference - yet anyway. I did the same to my last 1987 Jetta, and it ran for over 50,000K before the body, doors, windows, suspension etc fell apart at 450,000 K... engine still working great (I took it out and will keep it for some other use..

Until a few days ago I averaged 59 mpg (imperial)... last couple of days it is losing a bit of power under load (like when passing someone) and surges a little. I suspect a blocked EGR or MAF issue... an easy fix.

I would buy another VW tomorrow if I was in the market for a car.

If anyone has any ideas on the surging and loss of power, I am all ears.



17th Jun 2011, 17:34

In my 03 VW TDI Jetta, so far I have replaced 1 MAF sensor @ 150,000, 1 alternator @ 200,000, 2 (regularly scheduled) timing belts / H2O pumps, 4 sets of glow plugs, 3 windshields, and will finally have to replace 1 turbo @ 290,000 miles.

Unfortunately I can't get someone to just clean the turbo. They are only willing to replace it.

Regularly replaced tires, brakes, oil changes. Not bad for 290K miles.

19th Oct 2011, 18:21

I agree. I bought a demo Jetta TDI 2009 at 3000K last year. I have been to service it more than 10 times for various alarms; sometimes true, sometimes false, and my engine turned off by itself at very low speed twice within 3 months. I will sell it off and will not buy a VW again, as I had a 2nd hand Passat before; very bad experiences.

13th Nov 2011, 17:53

Check the intake manifold to see if it's carboned up. If it is, just clean it and all the power will be back.

18th Nov 2011, 14:55

I had to put the harness on my 03 Jetta. The light would come back on after I replaced the glow plugs. After that the harness was not a problem. Starts every time. The harness is a little hard to put in, because you have to unravel the wires to get to the place to plug it in. Goes under the battery and up the inside of the driver's fender.