L-1011-500
Topic Author
Posts: 359
Joined: Mon Nov 20, 2000 2:40 pm

Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed May 21, 2003 3:34 am

Hello all -

I like VWs. Always have. Now especially, VW powered by the 1.8T motor or the new 24V VR6. My friend and I are having this argument...he says that the new VWs are crap, with window problems, ignition coil problems, and general lack of customer service. I tell him that for all of the bad VWs he hears about, there are many more that are problem free. What do you guys think?

If you own a VW, do you like it?

If you know someone that does, do they like it?


View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Vasco Garcia


That's a VW in this photo  Big grin
 
bobrayner
Posts: 2038
Joined: Sun Apr 27, 2003 8:03 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed May 21, 2003 3:36 am

I would be very skeptical of this.

It's hard to imagine a sudden slip in VW quality control; and they have historically done well in reliability surveys.
Cunning linguist
 
Sabena332
Posts: 14938
Joined: Wed May 09, 2001 3:57 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed May 21, 2003 3:40 am

I had a VW Polo and now I have a VW Golf, I was and I am very satisfied with VW, never had a problem with both cars. The only problem is that VW is very expensive here in Germany.

Patrick
NZ1's mother is a disgusting crack-whore and his father is a worthless alcoholic!
 
Banco
Posts: 14343
Joined: Mon Oct 29, 2001 11:56 pm

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed May 21, 2003 3:51 am

VW's are renowned for their build quality. However, build quality should not be confused with reliability. VW's are most certainly not unreliable, but their image is rather better than the reality. Even so, they aren't bad at all.
She's as nervous as a very small nun at a penguin shoot.
 
goingboeing
Posts: 4727
Joined: Sat Dec 04, 1999 1:58 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed May 21, 2003 3:52 am

You might check out edmunds.com in the town hall section - there are many discussions from owners of VW's and Audi's out there. The overwhelming number of negative posts caused me to change my mind about getting a VW. Bear in mind that these owners mainly in the USA, and there have indeed been some quality issues in VW's headed for the States.
 
clipperhawaii
Posts: 1943
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 1999 3:35 pm

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed May 21, 2003 3:59 am

It's German so it must be good!
Nothing like a German car made in Mexico and driven by an American. Everybody's happy!

Right?
"You Can't Beat The Experience"
 
goingboeing
Posts: 4727
Joined: Sat Dec 04, 1999 1:58 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed May 21, 2003 4:14 am

Nothing like a German car made in Mexico and driven by an American. Everybody's happy!

Not to be picky, but I see an awful lot of Chevy Suburbans driving around my area, and 70% of those are built in Mexico...
 
clipperhawaii
Posts: 1943
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 1999 3:35 pm

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed May 21, 2003 4:33 am

I think you can be picky it's true! Nothing like a Mexican made car driven by an American. At least someones happy.  Smile
"You Can't Beat The Experience"
 
N79969
Posts: 6605
Joined: Tue Jan 29, 2002 1:43 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed May 21, 2003 4:40 am

I love my Jetta but it has had many annoying minor problems that seem to be the result of cheap materials or bad workmanship. The window lifters on both front windows have failed several times, thermostat was bad, the armrest storage assembly disintegrated, and some of the plastic is molting. I like VW customer service though.

Although I have not experienced it, the ignition coil problem is very serious. It was even picked up in the NYTimes. Some people had to wait weeks before replacement parts were available for their cars.
 
TriStar500
Posts: 4411
Joined: Thu Nov 04, 1999 9:50 pm

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed May 21, 2003 5:08 am

I've got my Volkswagen for almost ten years now and the only non-scheduled repair was a new oil pressure measuring device for 150 Euro (i.e. about the same in $) two years ago.

The next car I'll buy this fall will be a Volkswagen.  Big thumbs up
Homer: Facts are meaningless. You could use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true!
 
aer lingus
Posts: 367
Joined: Sun Mar 25, 2001 6:40 pm

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed May 21, 2003 5:12 am

The reliable of any car depends how do you use the car!
In Tommy's survey, The results are shown below.
If you're one of those people who uses automatic car washes.
If you never wash your car.
If you never polished/wax your car.
If you have crashed a car (minor scratches or crashes also counts as a crash)
Never pay Insurance or road tax premiums.
Show off person (customised cars etc)
Fast drivers (driving over 70mph).
If you drive like a lunatic (not following the rules of the road)
Fined for speeding, parking etc.
Not servicing the car as recommended by the manufacturer.
Using Leaded petrol on unleaded petrol powered cars.
If you parked your car in the middle of 2 parking spaces.
Not checking the levels in the engine regulary.
If you're a builder!

If you do anything above the car will only last for a maxium of 4 years!
you can get information looking after you car at
http://homepage.eircom.net/~lmfcc/index.htm

BA028_Is_EI-CDF  Smile

Hope you uderstand this! Big grin

BA LMFC Photography Group (Weston), (Collinstown)
Split Scimitar or Sharklets?
 
desertjets
Posts: 7588
Joined: Fri Feb 18, 2000 3:12 pm

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed May 21, 2003 5:14 am

Places like Epinions or Edmunds where people go to gripe is the worst place to get unbiased opinions about any product. In general I would say VWs are pretty reliable, not bullet proof like Toyotas or Hondas, but certainly better than anything Korean, and most of the US makers product. The coil packs on the 1.8T have been an ongoing problem, but it appears that a resolution has been found, and it only affects a specific number of vehicles. New builds will incorporate those changes. I think that the weak link for VW in NA is the dealer network... as the volume increases and they move upmarket many dealers are struggling to meet demand with larger and better staffed service departments.
Stop drop and roll will not save you in hell. --- seen on a church marque in rural Virginia
 
flight152
Posts: 3221
Joined: Fri Nov 24, 2000 8:04 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed May 21, 2003 9:19 am

Although I will say you will have problems with any car, I have heard more problems with VWs then average.
 
SN-A330
Posts: 1052
Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2001 4:38 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed May 21, 2003 5:38 pm

I have had quite a few VW's and Audi's in my company and they must be the only brand with which I never had any problems !

Regards, SN-A330
I would rather be flying...
 
MaxPowers
Posts: 453
Joined: Sun Dec 31, 2000 11:25 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed May 28, 2003 12:43 pm

We own a VW Passat 1.8 turbo 2001.5 model.

Let me tell you something...over 35k miles this year and she's runnin strong as ever. I have had not one problem with it. Granted, there were some coil pack issues with other VW's...but it hasn't hit my car.

I think it's hit or miss with alot of cars now a days..

Max Powers
 
flight152
Posts: 3221
Joined: Fri Nov 24, 2000 8:04 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed May 28, 2003 12:48 pm

Let me tell you something...over 35k miles this year and she's runnin strong as ever.

I'd hope so. 35K miles is pretty low by today's standards.

I've seen Volvos with nearly 300K miles, now thats something pretty amazing.
 
CX Flyboy
Posts: 6056
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 1999 6:10 pm

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed May 28, 2003 12:49 pm

Hi MaxPowers,

I also drive a 1.8T Passat, although from 2000. I have found it to be a very reliable and nice car. For the price it handles like a car worth twice what I paid. The driving is smooth, quiet, comfortable. I have absolutely no regrets buying it whatsoever.
Many of the parts are Audi parts which has a much better reputation than VW, although VW deserves much better than it has. Having said all that, I think my next car will be an Audi.
 
IMissPiedmont
Posts: 6200
Joined: Wed May 23, 2001 12:58 pm

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed May 28, 2003 12:52 pm

Thirty Five K this year? MaxPowers, I am humbled, I thought my 17K this year was high. If I drove that much I'd sure spring for a VW myself, if they still made the pickup anyway.

I have yet to meet a VW that was not rock solid and almost impossible to kill. A very well designed car in my opinion, a true 300000 mile vehicle if cared for a little.
The day you stop learning is the day you should die.
 
captaingomes
Posts: 6251
Joined: Tue Feb 13, 2001 1:33 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed May 28, 2003 3:35 pm

My 1997 Jetta TDI has been nearly bulletproof, with only a battery that went in the first 2 years, and a power steering reservoir which broke and leaked power steering fluid in my garage, rendering the car undriveable due to no fluid in the power steering. For 5 and a half years and 190,000 km, I'd say that's pretty damn good!

My dad has a 2001 Passat 1.8T, and the only 2 problems he's had were a stuck button on the radio (the dealer replaced the radio unit), and an engine temp sensor. That in 2 years and 60,000km. Again, not bad at all!

I'd say both cars are proving to be very reliable. Problem areas overall though? VW's had the coil-pack issue which was major, and took a while to resolve. But VW made car payments for any time the customer's cars were in the shop, provided rentals, and got the work done. The power windows affected Jetta's, Golfs and Beetles from 1998 to about 2001, and VW replaced the regulators and put on a 7 year warranty on those parts. However for the most part, VW's have many small annoying problems, from interior parts breaking, light bulbs going out, etc. Otherwise, their bodies are exceptionally strong, engines and trannies generally also very strong. They are cars built to last a long time and be safe in an accident.

VW's are more expensive than the Japanese and American competition, but they are very well equiped, and great fun to drive.
"it's kind of like an Airbus, it's an engineering marvel, but there's no sense of passion" -- J. Clarkson re: Coxster
 
captaingomes
Posts: 6251
Joined: Tue Feb 13, 2001 1:33 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed May 28, 2003 3:39 pm

I should also add, that if you want to get to the best discussion board concerning VW's on the net, go to http://www.vwvortex.com It's the airliners.net for VW's!  Smile
"it's kind of like an Airbus, it's an engineering marvel, but there's no sense of passion" -- J. Clarkson re: Coxster
 
MaxPowers
Posts: 453
Joined: Sun Dec 31, 2000 11:25 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Thu May 29, 2003 1:36 am

Flight 152.....

I put 35k this year....it was brand new when I got it. I think 35k in one year is quite impressive....granted it's all highway miles but still it's asking alot from a car when some people have 35k total on their car in 3 years....
 
captaingomes
Posts: 6251
Joined: Tue Feb 13, 2001 1:33 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Thu May 29, 2003 2:28 am

Let's face it, 35k miles per year is very high, and if that year goes by without any serious problems, that's a good thing. Of course a car will go much more than that in a lifetime. I like to see how a car behaves beyond 100k miles, because that's where serious weaknesses in cars really show up, from blown head gaskets, transmissions and other big ticket items. For the most part, VW's are very durable in that respect, where the same cannot be said for many other cars that are reliable in the first 100k miles.
"it's kind of like an Airbus, it's an engineering marvel, but there's no sense of passion" -- J. Clarkson re: Coxster
 
Starship
Posts: 1038
Joined: Wed Nov 24, 1999 3:26 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Thu May 29, 2003 10:29 am

Well I just bought my 7th car - a 1973 Volkswagen 412LE Variant. It's in very good condition for a 30 year old car, but it is due for a number of modifications.

I will be fitting a set of Porsche 944 mag wheels, 205/60 VR 15 tyres and upgrading a number of other things. Finding parts for it has been a real challenge. Without the internet it would have been impossible, but modern technology has enabled me to locate everything I wanted for the car. It has now done 138,000km and I know one person who did 550,000km in his Type 4 before selling it.

Having owned two of these cars previously, I had no hesitation in buying another. However it was a bit of a shock getting back into one after 18 years. Wow, how things have changed! Styling wise I think the 412 has held up pretty well, but in every other respect from handling to brakes to comfort to noise, modern cars are streets ahead. Fortunately many of the 412's bad features can be sorted out, but at the end of the day it remains a thirty year old car.

Behind every "no" is a "yes"
 
flyf15
Posts: 6633
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 11:10 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Thu May 29, 2003 11:29 am

I have a 2000 Passat 1.8T. Its a great car, I love it. I'm very glad I picked it (test drove about everything from the Toyota Camry to the Mercedes C-class). Although, I have had my share of problems with it. More things have broken than I would've liked but service and warranty has treated me well so I know that I would definately get the Passat again if I had to make the decision.
 
IMissPiedmont
Posts: 6200
Joined: Wed May 23, 2001 12:58 pm

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Thu May 29, 2003 2:16 pm

But MaxPowers di say 35K this year. 35000 kilometres is still about 22000 miles and since the year is only 5 months old, that is about 53000 miles per year.

And, Flight152, my 1977 Ford F-150 has 378216 miles as of tonight. That is a mere 14500 or so per year. Besides the carb it needs, it still runs quite well. I'm reaching for the Lunar round trip with it. I'll die first but it's a good dream to reach 450000 miles, isn't it?
The day you stop learning is the day you should die.
 
AWspicious
Posts: 2780
Joined: Fri Sep 14, 2001 7:47 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Thu May 29, 2003 3:44 pm

Volkswagens have a somewhat better than average reliability. However, as mentioned above, it depends on how the car is cared for.
My 1992 Passat Syncro has over 317,000km and still running pretty good. Mind you, I've been neglecting it for the past two years and it shows. I've driven this car hard and fast on many occasions... Over very long distances. I've also done some stupid things which resulted in some minor structural damage. However, overall, the car has been worry-free. The most vulnerable component on the Syncros is the G-charger (supercharger). Knock on wood, mine has held out fairly well, but, it does require some attention at present. Otherwise, the engine still runs nicely.
Many cars will prove reliable providing the owner/operator does not abuse the vehicle and follow a strict maintenance regime. I've seen Chevrolet Caprice with well over 300,000 km on the odometer, and I've seen brand new Honda Accords spend most of their life in the dealership's repair department. It all boils down to how the driver cares for the vehicle.

Cheers!
AW
Nevermind political correctness - Envision using your turn signals!
 
MaxPowers
Posts: 453
Joined: Sun Dec 31, 2000 11:25 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Fri May 30, 2003 1:27 am

IMissPiedmont,

I'm American. Here in the US, (k) attached to a number is an abbreviation for the numerical term thousand. 35k miles means 35,000 miles.

Max Powers
From Upstate, New York
 
Marcus
Posts: 1666
Joined: Fri Apr 20, 2001 5:08 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Fri May 30, 2003 2:30 am

Not to be picky, but I see an awful lot of Chevy Suburbans driving around my area, and 70% of those are built in Mexico...
**************************************

Indeed most large SUV's and pick up truck on US roads today are built in Mexico.......somehow I do not think that US car manufacturers would let their bread and butter models be built in plants where the QC levels are low.......in order to better ilustrate my post have a look at this link.....it's in Spanish but babel fish translation is below..........

http://automotriz.reforma.com/novedades/articulo/002461/

American consultant J.D. Power, In agreement with the annual study of initial quality (Initial Quality Study) the Mexican automotive plants have surpassed as far as quality talks about to American his contrapartes. The study, that analyzes the total of problems reported by each 100 units produced in a automotive plant, reveals that while the American plants register 138 problems by each 100 units, the Mexican productive organizations registered 135 problems by each 100 units that leave their lines of joint. The previous thing could pretend that the difference is minimum, nevertheless another one of the statistics of the company/signature confirm the merit of the Mexican plants. In agreement with the analysis of J.D. Power, the advance or improves in the initial quality of the cars produced in Mexico for its export to the United States during last the 5 years is of 35 percents in comparison with the accumulated improvement in the same period of 19 percents of the American plants. For Brian the Walters, director of product investigation in J.D. Power, this improvement does not occur overnight, "Is necessary a coordinated effort between designers, engineers and employees of the line of joint as much of the shipbuilder as of the suppliers to take to the vehicles produced in Mexico at extremely competitive levels with those produced in the United States", he emphasizes. The Mexican plants that emphasized in Mexico by their smaller number of problems by each 100 sold units were GM in Silao with 121 problems and DaimlerChrysler with Saltillo and Toluca with 127 and 131 problems respectively. The vehicles that take place in these plants are the Cadillac Escalade EXT, Chevrolet Avalanche, Suburban and GMC Yukon on the part of GM. On the other hand the vehicles that DaimlerChrysler in Saltillo and Toluca produces are pickup Dodge ram Heavy Duty and the PT Cruiser for the whole world.

Now getting back to the topic about the reliability of VW's........I had a VW bug while in college, if you have never driven one of those things you don't know what you are missing........

1.- Above average ground clearance for a small car
2.- Rear wheel drive with the engine mounted right over the rear axle for very interesting handling
3.- Dirt cheap
4.- Semi hard suspension and seats (that is kind of an acquired taste)
5.- Good steering and feedback from the road
6.- Endless conversion options and aftermarket kits
7.- Top speed of 160 km/h or 100 mph.....I don't think you would like to go faster than that in a bug

And best of all as I confirmed during a flood in Puerto Vallarta..........It floats!

As for the quality I never had any prblems with it......just one burned out headlight and a burned out relay after the "floating" confirmation.



Kids!....we are going to the happiest place on earth...TIJUANA! signed: Krusty the Clown
 
MD-90
Posts: 7835
Joined: Mon Jan 17, 2000 12:45 pm

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Sat May 31, 2003 12:16 pm

http://www.thecarplace.com/03vwcon.htm Why Robert Bowden likes the New Beetle Cabrio, but wouldn't buy one because of VW's slipping reliability.

http://www.thecarplace.com/02gti.htm Yet why VWs are some of the best engineered cars out there.
 
IMissPiedmont
Posts: 6200
Joined: Wed May 23, 2001 12:58 pm

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Sat May 31, 2003 1:16 pm

MaxPowers, I did not bother to check your profile before responding, I was taking the lowest possible number to make my point. Of course if I had engaged my brain first I would have seen miles.

Have you really driven that poor beast that far in 5 months? I've got 12,000 miles on my new truck in the same period and I drive like a madman.

Poor car.  Smile/happy/getting dizzy
The day you stop learning is the day you should die.
 
MaxPowers
Posts: 453
Joined: Sun Dec 31, 2000 11:25 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Sat May 31, 2003 8:41 pm

Sadly Yes...and it's only gonna get worse. But at least the gas mileage is good at 33 miles per gallon on the highway with the 1.8...

Max Powers
 
UPSfueler
Posts: 425
Joined: Sun May 25, 2003 9:40 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Sun Jun 01, 2003 7:06 am

I have a 99 Jetta and it has not given me 1 problem yet. I love my car and would not trade it in for anything else.

UPSfueler
 
jcs17
Posts: 7376
Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2001 11:13 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Sun Jun 01, 2003 11:46 am

I believe most VW's destined for the US arent even assembled in Germany, they are built in Puebla, Mexico.
America's chickens are coming home to rooooost!
 
captaingomes
Posts: 6251
Joined: Tue Feb 13, 2001 1:33 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Sun Jun 01, 2003 12:02 pm

Jettas and New Beetles are assembled in Mexico. Golfs are assembled in Brazil. Passats are assembled in Germany.
"it's kind of like an Airbus, it's an engineering marvel, but there's no sense of passion" -- J. Clarkson re: Coxster
 
gr325
Posts: 675
Joined: Fri Jan 18, 2002 2:37 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Tue Jun 03, 2003 7:35 pm

I bought a VW Golf a few months ago. It is from 1986 and a beautie. Good engine, not start problems. Working fine. And I can recommend it to everyone.
"You should have gone to specsavers"
 
buckfifty
Posts: 1278
Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2001 4:05 pm

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed Jun 04, 2003 12:19 am

I'm one of those people who had a really bad experience with my 2000 GTi VR6. Just about everything imaginable broke on it (window regulators, 2nd gear grind, instrument cluster replaced twice, doors misaligned, MAF sensor failures, etc), and I even wrote to VW for some sort of an answer. In the end, I got none.

I suppose each to their own. I've heard of many who have had great experiences with their Dub, and many others who were like me. Though the quality of the last two model year Golfs and Jetta/Bora's have been getting much better, I was told, aside from zie coilpack issue...
 
captaingomes
Posts: 6251
Joined: Tue Feb 13, 2001 1:33 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed Jun 04, 2003 12:41 am

Buckfifty, unfortunately when the new Golfs, Jettas and Beetles came out, the first few years were really bad. The quality in some respects was beyond reproach, but too many relatively small issues were present. From electrical problems, MAF's, coilpacks, window regulators, etc etc, it turned out to be a nightmare for too many owners. They seem to be good now, although we shall see what the new platform brings. VW has admitted the cars were not up to their standards, and they say the next platform will be equal to the best Japanese in reliability, but haven't we heard that before? I'm still a VW fan, and I anticipate the next models, but I am very interested to see how well they do, especially in the first 2 years.
"it's kind of like an Airbus, it's an engineering marvel, but there's no sense of passion" -- J. Clarkson re: Coxster
 
buckfifty
Posts: 1278
Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2001 4:05 pm

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed Jun 04, 2003 10:33 am

Hey Gomes...

I think we had this conversation before, because it seems a bit deja-vu.

You in any of the Toronto area VW clubs? Or do you surf the VW sites?
 
captaingomes
Posts: 6251
Joined: Tue Feb 13, 2001 1:33 am

RE: Are Volkswagens Unreliable?

Wed Jun 04, 2003 1:40 pm

fifty, I agree, I sound like a broken record, I haven't really said anything new in this thread that I haven't in other threads. Sorry about that!

I don't belong to any VW clubs, but I do surf both tdiclub.com and vwvortex.com.
"it's kind of like an Airbus, it's an engineering marvel, but there's no sense of passion" -- J. Clarkson re: Coxster

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Baidu [Spider], Braybuddy, DLFREEBIRD and 20 guests

Popular Searches On Airliners.net

Top Photos of Last:   24 Hours  •  48 Hours  •  7 Days  •  30 Days  •  180 Days  •  365 Days  •  All Time

Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe

Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days

Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos