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Old    Meathead (meathead65)      Join Date: Sep 2006       10-16-2010, 11:40 AM Reply   
Looking for a fuel saver for the wife that we can pay cash for...she likes the looks of the early 2000's Jettas. Most of the ones here seem to be racking up miles in the 110-140,000 range...any of you folks have any first hand advice on the reliability of a 125K mile VW??? Any problem areas to avoid? We want a 5 speed car, probably a 4 banger but if we found a V6 it would be okay....
Old    Darren Lamont (dlamont)      Join Date: Apr 2003       10-16-2010, 1:48 PM Reply   
I had a 97 Passat wagon TDI and just sold it with about 250K on the beast. Best car I ever owned. Don't know much about the gas Jettas but the diesels are rock solid. Got about 40-45mpg.
Old    Baitkiller (baitkiller)      Join Date: Jan 2010       10-16-2010, 2:58 PM Reply   
2000 Passat, 5 valve 4 cyl turbo. 5 speed tiptronic. 153 K and counting. Bought it new. Work beater. Timing belts, timing belts timing belts, timing belts, timing belts, timing belts. Every 75K pull the whole front of the car off and change the frigging belt. First belt went at 80K and took all 20 valves with it. $$$$$$$$$$$$$

Also if it isn't made of metal it is pure crap. window regulators 3 of 4--($130), door handles. 6 for 4 thats 150% breakage. headliners loose, door panels loose. Belts are crap. hoses suck.
The cruise control is a stupid cruel joke. Most owners will say: "what? It has cruise control?"

Clear coat has melanoma or scavies. you pick. (get it? you pick? )
The front vent plugs every two weeks from casual leaves even just a grasshopper or dirt and floods the floor boards. No it isn't parked under a tree.
Oh yeah, the tiptronic feature shat the bed at around 120K.

Whatever you do make sure you run full synthetic oils in the gear and engine.

Other than that it gets 29mpg at 82 MPH all day and has the best brakes of any car I have ever driven.

Caveat emptor
Old    Daniel (cowwboy)      Join Date: Jul 2008       10-16-2010, 10:46 PM Reply   
I've got a 02 jetta TDI with 180k on it.
Get a 5 speed and find a good mechanic or work on it yourself.
The plastic interior parts are kind of sensitive but in general I love the car.
I've got a auto and get 40mpg.
Definitely find you a TDI with a 5 speed.
Old    Greg McNeill (greg2)      Join Date: May 2002       10-17-2010, 3:45 PM Reply   
Bought an 02 for my daughter a couple of years ago. I replaced the timing belt and water pump in a couple if hours and it has been running great since. She has about 120K on it now. I have a good friend that owns a europeon repair shop and he said the 1.8 engines will have issues if synthetic oil is not used. Since we would not be able to determine history we went with a 2.0 engine.
Old    Hate N Pain (hatepain)      Join Date: Aug 2006       10-17-2010, 7:48 PM Reply   
You are much more likely to have problems with those year Jetta's than not. We so consistently had problems with them that we flat out just stopped selling them.
Old    John Bauer (jonyb)      Join Date: Nov 2008       10-19-2010, 3:06 PM Reply   
My wife had a 2000 Jetta that she bought new. The check engine light was on for 37,000 of the 38000 miles that she owned it. Dealer was 1.5 hours away and could never figure it out. They'd clear it, then on the drive home it would come back in. Finally took it to another dealer after being tired of that one, and they had it fixed, but it was out of warranty then, so we had to foot the bill.

Also, the windows fell out of it and other VW's constantly. There's a cable that moves the glass up and down, and the glass is held in by plastic clips. Those clips were notorious for breaking. Her sister had a Golf that did the same exact thing. I passed a Jetta on the road the other day that had duct tape holding the window up. It made me laugh.....

That car was a serious POS. Good gas mileage is a plus so you aren't out so much money when you have to take it back to the dealer.
Old    Todd (antoddio)      Join Date: Dec 2006       10-19-2010, 3:52 PM Reply   
It's hit or miss with those...but mostly miss it seems. Check consumer reports, from what I've gathered over the years their reliability reports are pretty accurate.
Old    Hate N Pain (hatepain)      Join Date: Aug 2006       10-19-2010, 6:12 PM Reply   
Its funny in those years you could get a solar powered trickle charger that you would suction cup to the window or moonroof to keep the battery charged up.

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