I bought this car with 63,000 miles on it in May of 2011 and I had never driven a manual car before then. This car is easy to leave how to drive manual, and is very fun to drive because it hugs corners. Although it does lack power, it is still a great car and if you can find one with low miles I would highly recommend buying one for yourself.
Manual Transmission, Low, European Styling, Hard to find in good condition.
More Power, Toque, Upgrade Motor if possible, upgrade clutch
While this is not the most appealing car it has been incredibly reliable. 15 years old and the only thing I've had to fix since acquiring it 6 years ago was a oil pressure sending unit for $60! My 2001 Jetta was a disaster of a car...constantly breaking down. The VW's of the 1990's are amazingly reliable vehicles.
This was (and still is) my first car that I got in high school. I got it with 68,000 miles in 07 and have put on about 30,000 since then. Even with only 4 cylinders I have no problems getting up to speed on the highway and passing people. The gas mileage is ok around town but between 50-75 it really rocks. The interior was cheaply made, and there are a lot of cheap plastic pieces, but at 15 years old I'm not surprised that most of it is deteriorating. The biggest problem I had was with an intermittent speedometer, but I plan on running this car into the ground. If you can find one, you will not be disappointed.
I inherited this car with 31,000 miles on it, in practically mint condition. Aside from precautionary maintenance,new belts,replace brake fluid,etc , the car has performed perfectly. I now have 41,000 miles on it.The car gets about 30-35 mpg, has good acceleration on the highway, and cruises easily at 70 mph. Plenty of space inside.
Hatchback versatility, fun to drive factor, smooth 5 speed manual transmission, gas mileage,sun roof.
Seat adjustment knobs came off, the glove compartment is too small.
I bought my Golf new in May '97. Kept it simple by NOT having power door locks, air conditioning or auto trans. I now have 203,125 miles on the odometer, and everything is working great. I have had some minor trim problems years ago, but resolved by non-vw bodyshop. I've had the front and rear brakes done once each (wear and tear) and I'm now on my second complete muffler replacement. I have not experienced any of the wiper/door lock failures, though locks freeze up easy. driving is manageable in snow but not great. I'm still on the same clutch. I regularly have VW maintenance @ 5000mi to take care of it and performs better on 91 octane gas. Is is fun? Got caught doing 113mi/hr in a 50 zone.
Passing ability in 2nd and 3rd gear. fuel economy, moon roof, optional premium sound system.
moon roof leaks a bit (shows some slight roof material stains), if your trim is falling off get a bodyshop to permanently stick it on - not VW. In cold climates keep lock de-icer handy. Suggestion for all German Car Makers (VW, BMW, AUDI): offer the 2.0L AWD Diesel models readily available in Germany