2003 Volkswagen Polo E 55 1.2 from UK and Ireland


A great car let down by unacceptable manufacturing faults in only 4 months of


Front wheel tracking was out of alignment from the factory and at delivery.

Unusual wear to front tyres at 5000 miles.

Creaking sound from front suspension was worn "bushes" on the "front wishbone" at 9,500 miles.

Knocking sound in the rear of car from loose internal trim by fuel intake and rear shock-absorber mounting at 9,500 miles.

Tracking out of alignment for a second time as was not checked when the "front bushes" were replaced by the dealer.

Paint work on bonnet chips easily on motorways as I find the paint to be quite soft.

The car seems to be under a certain amount of overall tension as it creaks when travelling at slow speeds on uneven roads and speed humps.

General Comments:

Feel very let down by VW as this was my first "brand-new" car and was expecting a higher build quality.

My car has been in the dealer workshop 3 times in 4 months since purchase.

I have lost complete faith and peace of mind in this VW car and by the attitude of VW in the UK to exchange my car for a new vehicle.

The car is actually a great vehicle with exception of poor build quality in the areas that I have mentioned.

Great fuel economy and a very smooth ride.

High quality interior gives the vehicle a very 1st class feel.

Plenty of room in the rear load area with an added advantage of removable rear seats.

The small 1.2 55bhp engine is great and performs perfectly well in the city and cruising between 70mph & 80mph on the motorway.

I tried the 1.2 65bhp model, but found it slower and not as "peppy" in the city.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 2nd November, 2003

2nd Mar 2004, 17:39

I know exactly how you feel. My Polo S 1.9 SDI has all of the same faults and I have had the same bad treatment from the manufacturer and my dealer. My car was purchased in April 2003 and has been back at the dealer on average probably twice a month with still no end in sight. I have submitted a separate review to this site.

15th Feb 2005, 13:51

I also have a 2003 1.2 e 55bhp polo, purchased from new. Overall I am quite pleased with it - however I share your concerns regarding the paint chipping far too easily (mine is black which makes it worse!) and also the creaky suspension. The build quality overall is good apart from this.

9th Oct 2009, 04:59

I too have a 2003 VW Polo 1.2 E.

I find the paint chips too easily, I have had problems with the front and the rear suspension bushes, both needing to be replaced prematurely. I have had a corrosion issue with the front anti-roll bar which again needed to be replaced.

In parts of the interior the trim has started to pull away from the rest of the car. The interior has quite a few squeaks and rattles. The body work of the car is also very thin and made me feel the car was of poorer build quality than previous polos.

I won't be buying another polo.

2003 Volkswagen Polo Highline 1.4 16v 74kW from Netherlands


Too poor built, too expensive little sports-car


When I just got the car I noticed a stain on the side of the passengers' chair.

The motor of the rear window washer broke down. The fluids didn't make it to the window, they sprayed onto the wiper.

There must be an awful lot of torsion in the car, because it makes terrible noise when driving over a bump. The doors squeak etc.

Within 18.000 kilometers some 2 liters of oil had to be refilled.

General Comments:

It's a fast car (100 hp) and it looks great (purple with 15" alloy 'Melbourne' rims). The car has never let be down (yet). The materials on the inside of the car feel great and look great. The sound-system (8 loudspeakers) is also a plus. Too bad that the front seats cannot be placed far enough away from the pedals.

Dependent of what the dealer can solve to my problems I think I will not automatically choose another Volkswagen again.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 21st August, 2003

25th Oct 2003, 09:51

With all due respect to the author of this review, I have to add that a 100BHP car is by no means fast and honestly can never be described as a sports car!

2003 Volkswagen Polo Trendline 1.2 65BHP 1.2 65BHP from Cyprus


A cut above the rest in the class


Thus far the only fault was a minor rattle coming from the rear of the car. This rattle occurred when going over a serve bump in the road and not over poor surfaces. This was fixed by the dealer.

General Comments:

I have enjoyed fault free motoring for over 5,000 Km. The car has been everything that I expected.

The 1.2 65BHP is sweet and strong, but overtaking has to be planned with care. This small engine lacks the raw power to blast past other cars on the road. But otherwise the car returns decent performance.

The semi-automatic air conditioning sometimes struggles with the hottest Cyprus days. But again, this is not a major problem.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 17th August, 2003

2003 Volkswagen Polo 1.2 Highline from Norway


Problems at a very early stage..


Strange sound beneath the car. (Will be fixed by dealer)

Dashboard rattles. (Dealer will try to fix it)

General Comments:

A overall nice car, but I have bad feeling because of the early rattling in the dashboard and the problems with noise underneath the car.

The 65hp engine is very good.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 26th June, 2003

9th Jul 2003, 13:26

What type of noise is the strange sound from under the car?I think I may have the same problem, which the technicians at the VW dealership are trying to tell me is tyre noise, I don't think it is.


22nd Oct 2007, 12:07

I have a 2004 Volkswagon Polo 1.4 FSI (Petrol) 5Dr. Car runs great except recently when I change down at junctions, engine revs drop and engine cuts out. On restarting, engine will not idle. Problem tends to clear itself after a while. No engine management lights come on. Had it plugged into four different computers to check it, including main dealer; no faults found. It seems to be an intermittent fault; has anyone else experienced this, and if so, what was fault and remedy?