2002 Volkswagen Passat GLX from North America


Watch out when you hit 50,000 miles


At 6,000 miles, in-Cabin air-filter seal leaked, sending gallons of rain water into the cabin. Ruined carpet, electrical harness, gear selection indicator, and more. One month in the shop to repair. Repair covered under warranty

At 48,000 miles, ECT sensor failed, sending engine to high temps, almost overheating. Repair covered under warranty.

At 52,500 miles (3 1/2 years old), heater core failed, taking the heater box with it. VW would not assist with repair since the warranty had expired a whole month earlier. Cost to repair $2000.

General Comments:

The car is tight, and I like all the bells and whistles, but I am very turned off by VW's "inability" to assist me with the heater core repair. They could have had a loyal lifetime customer if they had stepped to the plate with some help, even if only some fraction of the total repair. Now, I think I'll be shopping at Acura or Lexus for my next car.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 7th March, 2006

2002 Volkswagen Passat S 1.8T from UK and Ireland


It has proved comfortable, but costly and I am looking to change to something more reliable.


I had to replace the battery at 20,000 miles as I had inadvertently left the heated wing mirrors on. There is no warning sound to remind you to switch them from the 'heat' position.

I had an ignition coil failure at 27,000 miles, resulting in misfiring and a flashing yellow light warning me that driving the car further could damage the catalytic converter. The misfiring was so bad that I could hardly drive the car anyway.

General Comments:

Generally it is a comfortable car which I enjoy driving.

Long journeys are far easier in this car than in previous, smaller cars.

The cabin is a nice place to be, roomy, with an excellent climate control system. I have got used to the gloomy colour scheme, which is outweighed by the overall feel of quality.

The sound system isn't bad and I feel safe in the car.

The handling isn't very good, but its OK as long as you are careful.

The car is expensive to own, in a very high insurance group considering its cost when new, and with poor mpg and expensive parts. I had 2 wing mirror brackets replaced due to vandalism, costing me £140. This wasn't covered by my insurance as they insisted on a £200 excess for the Passat.

The failed ignition coil was cheap to replace as I'm in the AA, but I am now worried that more coils will fail. I have read that ignition coil failure is a problem on this engine. I asked the dealer about this when buying, but he assured me that the model had been updated, and the problem eliminated. However, this clearly is not the case.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 2nd March, 2006

3rd Mar 2006, 03:07

I have the same car.

Buy the coil packs from a VW dealer. Change ALL of them yourself and send the receipt to VW Customer Services in Milton Keynes, saying that you know it is a known problem. They will refund the money. That's what I did after my first coil pack went. They didn't quibble about it.

Even if they don't refund you, for about £100 at least you get piece of mind.

Ps - also change the MAF sensor - about £70 from VW for an exchange unit - your MAF sensor will also go soon at that mileage.

Good luck - it's a great car - you'll realise it when its time to change and nothing else feels 'quite right' anymore.

2002 Volkswagen Passat GLX 4 Motion 6 cylinder from North America


Am becoming increasingly concerned the longer I drive it


Monsoon radio stopped working 3 times.

Six pairs of low beam bulbs have blown.

Dealer's Svce. Dept. never has real answers; only shrugs and guesses.

General Comments:

Monsoon radio stopped working 3 times in total: In year 1 dealer rebooted; in year 3 dealer rebooted; in year 4 dealer stated they 'could not' reboot again and I would have to buy a new radio which was no longer under warranty. I am on my sixth pair of low beam bulbs in 3-1/2 yrs. and the length of time until they blow now is increasing shorter. The dealer has replaced 3 sets and independent auto shop had replaced 2 sets and I, with latex gloves on, have replaced one set.

Before replacing current set, they lasted TWO days and both blew at same time???

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 22nd February, 2006