2002 Volkswagen Passat SE 1.9 turbo diesel (130PS) from UK and Ireland
A crate at 70,000 miles, but great up until then
Was impeccably reliable until about 70,000 miles then the following in the last 14k (all out of warranty:
Clutch judder (common fault and nearly £800 to fix)
Have had to replace almost the entire front suspension due to knocks, creaks and clonks over bumps. Apparently, 70,000 miles is good going for front suspension on a Passat!! Nice to know these things when you're paying a big bill.
Water leaking into the car because of a blocked drain channel (design fault and common problem)
Alarm developed a mind of its own (common problem caused by the water getting into the car)
Inside edges of rear tyres scrubbing (worn bushes, another common problem)
Temperature gauge "quits" after about 20 minutes of running. Switching the ignition off and on again cures it. For another 20 minutes.
Pipe popped off the intercooler reducing boost to zero. This car can barely move its own weight when that happens. Oh, this is a common problem also.
Great car in many ways. Classy, comfortable, lively, economical, refined and good looking (in my opinion)
Was the model of reliability for 70,000 miles. Didn't have to so much as replace a bulb. Sadly, once it got to 70,000 miles it was like it had been pre-programmed to self destruct.
Had I followed the "offical" VW dealer route for all of the above repairs, I would have spent over £2,000 on unscheduled repairs in the last year. By using independents, I managed to get it down to half that, but still appalling on a supposed quality product.
The disinterest and rudeness of VW dealers has to be experienced to be believed.
I want rid of it, but having just spent a grand on it, I want to get my money's worth. I still really like driving the car, but I don't trust it any more.
The least reliable and most expensive to maintain car I have ever owned, and I have owned two Alfasuds and a Rover SD1!
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No
Review Date: 11th August, 2006