18th Dec 2003, 09:17

Thank you for your comments on the 1997 VW Jetta. I just bought a 1997 Golf with 50,000 miles on it. Its transmission works in very peculiar ways. As you say, the dealer that I bought it from can't find anything wrong with it. Of course they can't, they don't drive the car every day like I do. I had a 1986 Golf that I bought in 1990. It was a real pleasure to drive. I know the difference between a good design and a bad design. Out of necessity I drove several rental cars for a month this summer. (Not VWs.) They handled fabulously well. I found your comments by looking for anyone else that might have reported similar problems on the internet. My 1997 Golf will be my last VW.

28th Jan 2004, 19:34

I argee with everyone's comments about the 1997 Jetta. My mom bought me a lovely red Jetta, to be driven periodically (since I am a college student who lives a block away from campus). My warranty was soon needed to "fix" the transmission problems, which came to a grand total of about $2500. I knew that I wasn't crazy for think that the car should reach up to about 40rpm before I reached 20mph. That's insane. For some reason, I was drawn in by the fun, young design of the Jetta, but know I have seen the light. As a matter of fact, I am taking this thing for transmission "repair" at the end the week. Maybe a Chevy isn't so bad?

30th Jan 2008, 19:51

I too have a 1997 golf with 42000 miles. the car has been sitting for 2 years minimum in a garage. The car does not shift into high gear on the auto trans. I do about 45 mph at 3500 rmp way over the shift point.

Since I got the car new from a broker. they said it doesn't fall under warranty when I call last year. but the lady did say try to help, but the dealer had no idea about my car or the way it was purchased. (don't buy from a car broker)

Anyways. I don't see how a car that was perfect in 2006 and started and driven very minimally can have all these problems now.

8th Sep 2008, 20:30

I purchased a 1997 VW Jetta in August 2008. It had 130,000 miles on it and had some problems with it, but nothing I considered out of the ordinary. I am very pleased with my 5-speed manual transmission, other than if you over-rev it shifting into another gear it will slipper-shift and you have to let the RPMs go down before you shift again. The gas mileage is good and has been reliable so far. One caution; I've been told not to use after-market parts (filters, etc.) as sometimes they don't work as well as factory or VW-certified parts. So far, so good. It's nimble and handles very well. It didn't come with a owner's manual, so I bought a Hayne's manual, which has given me a good reference.

23rd Feb 2011, 08:39

I own a 97 Jetta as well, although I must have been lucky. I haven't experienced any problems thus far, with over 140K miles on it. The only problem I've had is the passenger door lock not engaging in cold weather. Other than that I think it's a great car... but I may be the exception.

Also, with regards to VW's sales, they are doing extremely well. They've even purchased other car companies now. VW owns Porsche, and now own the makers of the fastest production car in the world, the Bugatti.

23rd Feb 2011, 17:31

Volkswagen claims it wants to be the world's biggest automaker. I can't see it happening until they drop the prices of their cars in Canada and the U.S. They sure don't come cheap. They're great to drive, but their reliability is so spotty.