2008 Volkswagen Rabbit 2.5 from North America
Probably the best car in America under $25k
Aside from a faulty paintjob, fixed within the first week, there've been no problems with the car.
I should've done my homework. Buying my Saab out of the lease or a new VW Rabbit cost the same. Trying to economize, I picked the Rabbit. My insurance increased by over 1/3 and I've yet to get the 30-35 mpg I typically got with my Saab, 28 is the best I've been able to do.
It loses composure sometimes on bumpy Michigan roads, but I can turn corners faster than most and it generally handles well, especially for a subcompact.
It has good scoot, but sounds awful when pushed. Transmission is excellent.
Seat comfort couldn't be better. Adults comfortable in rear as long as front seat isn't in the rear-most two slots.
Sunroof open/close only require one touch.
Wipers/radio sound adjust for speed. I've had other cars that say they do, but the Rabbit actually does.
Htd mirrors are a nice touch, but I'm having a difficult time remembering to turn them off due to the position of the switch (not really visible when seated).
For stepping down from a 9-3 to a Rabbit, I don't really feel as though I gave up much.
Electronic stability control is very slow to kick in. Dealer says it's normal, but I wonder whether I paid extra for something too slow to matter.
Feels rock-solid, except for some wander on grooved pavement.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 24th May, 2008
I own an '08 Rabbit and I couldn't agree more with all (but 1...) of your comments! It's a great car for the money - feels much more expensive than it is.
The comment I disagree with is the sound of the 5cyl when pushed hard... I really like the sound myself... much better than a droning 4 cylinder anyway. If you add an aftermarket intake that eliminates the resonator box to the Rabbit, it sounds eerily similar to the Dodge Viper's V-10 from the movie "Wanted" when accelerating hard! (Cool if you like that sort of sound anyway...).
You can't beat a Rabbit for the money.
I also traded a Saab (97 900SE) on a Rabbit (06). It doesn't feel like I gave up much either. The VW feels as solid (if not more so) and sprightly as the Saab did new.
Like everyone says, the mileage isn't exactly stellar. About 10,000 miles later I average about 27/32. I'm about as mechanical as a gerbil, but maybe it's because the Rabbit engine's a 2.5. My Saab was a smaller 2.0 - though the turbo seemed to make her thirstier.
All told, all it seems I gave up was a convertible top (mixed blessing) for a sunroof.
The reason the first "commentor" doesn't agree with the "sound of the engine," is because the 08-up 2.5 is tuned differently, and puts out 20 more HP. It sounds better than the previous Rabbits. Other than that.. ROCK ON VW! I love my Rabbit!
If you like that sound, put on a Carbonio cold air intake (sits in the driver-front wheel well) and it will growl with a healthy intake sound.