25th Mar 2010, 19:05

I have a 2001 Polo Classic, and have had ALL of the problems mentioned.

My automatic transmission is hitting when changing from first to second, and slipping in 3rd. I have already replaced the solenoid sensors, put in a new valve body, and discs. Everything is brand new! And still I have the same problem.

I have been told that Volkswagens require Volkswagen transmission fluid specifically, and that could be my problem.

The car just finished a VW scan at the mechanic, and they said there is no problem! Luckily my mechanic said if there is a mechanical problem, he will refund my money.

I bought my car used without an owner's manual, and can't seem to find one online. Does anyone know the answer to this transmission fluid question? PLEASE HELP!!!

29th Mar 2010, 15:38

Fellow Polo owners, having recently purchased a 2000 (W) Polo for the wife, we have experienced the EML light on the instrument panel, resulting in 3 visits to the garage.

The ECU was removed and sent for testing, but no faults recorded. ECU cleaned and refitted, light still feels the need to show itself occasionally, but does not interfere with the running of the car, it's just a nuisance factor.

Over the weekend, we now have an additional noise whilst car is idling and running. The noise is in sync with the engine revs eg, when idling and revving, the noise (a whirring) increases in pitch. This is also the case when under load.

Obviously reading the horror stories listed, I'm thinking gearbox, however currently there are no gear selection issues, and noise is constant when clutch is depressed. Has anyone experienced a similar issue? I will update as and when a solution is found.

7th May 2010, 17:24

Hi people.

I'm a mechanic, and both my sisters have the 1998 VW Polo 1.4 CL, and my girlfriend has the 2000 facelift 1.4 CL.

I'm really happy with the Polos. Yes the pedal box is an issue, but they're not too bad to do. I've done around 15+.

In my eyes the Polos are very reliable and very cheap to run. Parts are cheap and widely available from breakers, and they're attractive.

The pedal box hasn't gone on my girlfriend's Polo yet, but I do clean the throttle butterfly every few months.

15th May 2010, 17:53

I have found that I have been violated. I too just purchased a Polo 1.4 2001.

Same problems; windows, clutch, gearbox, EPC light on, pedal box, whining under load.

I have been a mechanic for 10 years. Out of the trade for some time. Can fix problems, but should not be having them on a VW. FOLLOW MY ADVICE: Don't BUY...

24th May 2010, 06:50

Seems like we all have or have had the same problems with this car. I have a Y plate Polo Match, bought used around 5 years ago.

Within 1 month, 2 faulty sensors had been replaced. Then the central locking went (VW wanted £260 to replace barrel in driver side door).

Driver side window went next, although console can still close, but not open, passenger side window (thankfully the passenger side control works).

Over the last month, I have thrown £900, that I can't afford at this car replacing clutch, starter motor, some engine electrical work and some "tidying" work to gearbox...

Now I have the same issue as most of you, the car will not engage gear without me forcing it.

Nice car when young, but doesn't seem to age well... time for the scrappie!

30th Jun 2010, 08:14

Just bought the Polo 1.4 2001 from an auction.

Electric windows worked, within a day I can't control the passenger side window from the driver side.

Very high biting point on the clutch.

Back seats get wet from what I presume is the water pipe to the rear wiper - as the water doesn't function on the rear wiper.

Driveshaft needs replacing, though that I knew already from the sound it made. And I haven't had a chance to drive it properly to see if there's anything else!

It's worrying reading all these comments! Good luck everyone!

24th Jul 2010, 19:57

A pedal box on a VW Polo will cost about £180 to replace at an independent garage. The part is just a metal bracket that houses the 3 pedals, and only costs around £35, but fitting it is a 3-4 hour job, hence a further £145 for labour.

It is my understanding that the weakness in the pedal box comes from the fact that it needs to be strong enough to take the stress from the pedals, but also still deformable in an accident. However, the design flaw is that VW have made the spot welds on the pedal box too weak, and as a result the unit is prone to failure, breaking on the clutch side and bending, meaning the clutch cannot be fully engaged, hence trouble selecting gears. If the problem isn't fixed fairly quickly and the car continues to be driven, it is likely that the clutch will go as well. VW are well aware of this, but are reluctant to admit it for obvious reasons. If your car is still under warranty, you should have no problem in getting it replaced, however if it is not, you will most likely have to pay out for this yourself, and my advice would be don't go to Volkswagen; just use your local garage and save yourself a lot of money.

29th Oct 2010, 06:10

Same problems here.

The usual 2001 Polo gearbox from hell. 1.4 16v in my case.

Sometimes had trouble getting into gear at traffic lights. Clutch had to be replaced, but still a whining/grinding noise from the gearbox, reverse "crunch".

Then the transaxle came apart from the gearbox in another country. The car will probably have to be crushed, as it costs too much to fix and nobody will buy it (and, unlike VW, I have a conscience and would never knowingly sell such a piece of rubbish to somebody).

Funny, I read on here that so many people have exactly the same problems with the 2001 Polo gearbox/clutch setup, yet when I ask the VW dealer if there are problems with this Polo, they just say, "no, not at all." Hmmm.

A gearbox/clutch. This is such a basic part of a car. How can they get is so incredibly wrong??

Besides that, had other less major problems: leaking windscreen, ABS lights/sensors gone awry, engine warning lights for no reason, brakes wearing out quickly, exhaust rusting away...

6th Nov 2010, 12:16

I also own a Polo 51 reg from new. Was a wonderful little car to drive when brand new, and for a further five or six years. However it has now had a problem with the ABS, the famous pedal box incident, which left me stranded overnight in the middle of nowhere without mobile signal!

After a lot of waffling on, my local VW garage agreed to replace the pedal box free of charge, but now I am finding that it has a high whining sound when in first and second gear. Gear changing is also not smooth, and the reverse is also sounding very ill! Electrics failed and cost £190 to fix. ABS lights came on and another £190 to fix what the mechanics at my local garage called a "danger to drive". I would really be grateful if anyone knew what to do about the whining sound in the engine, and more importantly what is it in the first place, as the cam belt was changed, albeit not by VW, who gleefully quoted me around £700 to sort out. It's criminal!