1996 Volkswagen Passat GLX VR6 from North America
Solid as a rock and a blast to drive
Had to replace some seals in the coolant system immediately after buying the vehicle.
CV joint was cracked, replaced the axles, installed them myself so was only out $160 for the OEM axles.
2nd gear synchronizer is temperamental, may have to replace the transmission within a year or so.
VW installs rubber bushings and hydraulic motor mounts as stock, so I replaced those with solid poly bushings and solid motor mounts to stiffen up the front end.
The VR6 engine being in a body that was originally made for a 4-cylinder engine makes working on it difficult at times.
Compressor went out on me, now I get to drive around in leather seats with no A/C.
In general, this wagon is a TANK. Never had problems starting it or wondering if it will turn over in the cold Colorado weather.
Has almost 200K miles on it and still plenty of life left. I'm expecting it to last at least another 100K.
Never burns oil or leaks anything at all.
Good and responsive, very agile and quick for a station wagon. Solid engineering on the steering column. Great for driving up tricky mountain roads in all kinds of weather.
Once I took care of the issues that had to get done right away I have had NO problems for the past year and a half. I moved cross-country in it with complete confidence it would get me there. VWs are surprisingly easy to work on yourself and compared to a lot of other European models, the OEM parts are pretty affordable if you know where to shop.
A/C may be out but the heat works great!
This is an all-around super fun wagon to drive. Has plenty of torque thanks to the 6-cylinder engine.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 28th November, 2008