1998 Volkswagen Polo L 1.0 from UK and Ireland


A reliable town runabout


Battery failed after about 1 year.

No other problems.

General Comments:

A good, reliable and well built car.

Specification is very basic with manual everything except the door mirrors which are electric - that really seems pointless. A bit over-priced compared to the competition.

Could do with more power but you know this when you buy a 1 litre car.

Don't try and do very long mileages as the engine screams a bit and after a 500 mile plus journey that I've done a few times, your back will ache for a few days.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 13th September, 2000

1998 Volkswagen Polo CL 1.4 from UK and Ireland


A well built car with top resale, comfort and nice power delivery


Passenger window motor replaced twice, rattle in the gearbox when cold, nothing else, a really nice car to drive and own, I thought the suspension was hard until I got my new car, an Ibiza 1.6 Sport, now I would call it comfortable instead.

You can't go wrong with buying a car from the Volkswagen group (VW, Seat, Audi, etc), especially when you get a 3 year unlimited mileage warranty and solid build, I will stick within the VW group from now on, stick your Jap crap where the sun don't shine, German engineering is still the best.

General Comments:

Quite powerful car, good on motorways, lots of torque, forget the figures in the mags, I had a 8.5 to 60mph on several occasions and a top end of 114 and still had a 1000 revs to go in 5th gear, I don't know where they get 14.5 to 60 and a top end of 100, very conservative, very Volkswagen.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 30th June, 2000

4th Aug 2002, 13:30

German engineering. Manufactured in Spain.

19th Nov 2002, 04:15

What has the country of manufacture got to do with engineering???

21st Nov 2002, 03:43

You are lucky you have got a good one! They're not all like that I can assure you.

1st Sep 2003, 08:39

You certainly can go wrong with a VW. My wife's brand new Polo needed a new engine after six months of tiresome dealings with the dealership who could not care less. I had to resort to tackling VW UK to get this problem resolved. Eventually the engine was inspected properly by a different dealer and it was found that the oil was not reaching all parts of the engine when the car was started. Needless to say there was significant engine damage.

The engine problem was one of many problems during the first year of ownership.

Others problems included:

- Faulty fuel pump (replaced under warranty),

- Unable to select 1st gear (repaired under warranty),

- Loose door checks and hinges - only the front doors (tightened by me).

The car is 5 years old now, has covered 22,000 miles & has a full service history (by independent VW specialist since the warranty expired). The best feature of buying the car was the much needed 3 year warranty.

28th Feb 2004, 13:36

I drive a 1998 Polo and have never had any trouble with it.

It is totally reliable and very well built. A joy to drive.

It will probably run for years and years and I am surprised to hear others have had problems.

1st Apr 2005, 05:04

We have a 1998 Polo diesel as a 2nd car, which we've owned from new. 60,000 miles and maintained regardless of cost.

In my experience, it has good quality paint and bodywork which resists rust and dings remarkably well, but in all other respects it is no better than an equivalent Ford, Vauxhall, Honda, Toyota or any other. At 60k, it rattles and squeaks quite noticeably inside, and although it has been pretty reliable, it hasn't been faultless by any stretch of the imagination.

Based on experience with various company cars, I can report that Fords, Peugeots and Vauxhalls are no less reliable over an equivalent mileage. The gap in interior/trim quality has closed too. The only two arguments I can see for buying a VW over any other brand these days are simple preferences, or residual values if you plan to sell within three years. Otherwise, I wouldn't necessarily go the VW route again.

4th Aug 2008, 07:24

Love my 1998 Polo. It's unstoppable at 96000. Still goes and goes! Considering I ragged the crap out of it and have done 50 miles in 2 years! I have had no problems.

1998 Volkswagen Polo Classic 1.6 petrol from UK and Ireland


Mileage is still 1,500 miles. A crunch when inserting reverse gear, and a strange thumping sound when the steering is operated.

General Comments:

A sporty, comfortable car, but with a tendency to skid in wet weather. A minor accident already.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 10th November, 1998

1998 Volkswagen Polo L 1.0 petrol from UK and Ireland


Selecting reverse gear causes a crunch every time you go into it.

Doors sping back when you try to close them, so they don't close.

A strange thumping noise from the engine, which turned out to be the fan belt catching on the housing.

General Comments:

A nippy little car which is comfortable to drive, but the engine is a little small so mid range performance isn't that great.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 13th September, 1998