by flyingpatricio on Apr 26, 2011 Vehicle: 2003 Volkswagen Golf GLS 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl 4A)
I've had my 2003 Golf GLS for 3 years now. I bought it used with 10,200 miles on it. I've put 65,000 miles on it.
I like how competent it feels no matter the conditions. It's heavy enough to feel safe on the freeway and light enough to get great mileage.
I'm a paint contractor and I haul all my gear in it daily. It holds my Little Giant ladder with just the passenger front seat put down. I've even put 2'x8' wood planks in it and was able to shut the hatch. I call it my "clown car". When we go camping it holds all of our gear with ease...camp kitchen, coolers, coleman stove, sterilite tub, etc. My wife's 2010 Honda Insight can hold about half as much...really!
In short...I love this car!
by cannoncam on Jan 4, 2011 Vehicle: 2003 Volkswagen Golf GL TDI 2dr Hatchback (1.9L 4cyl Turbodiesel 5M)
I've got 221,000 miles on my TDI and it's running like it's got a quarter of the mileage on it. It's a great commuter and the gas mileage is what sells the car. It is a little under powered but for 45 mpg's the sacrifice is well worth it. The looks are good but not everyones cup of tea (I've upgraded a few things here and there and it is quite the little head turner). The interior is much nicer than most American or Japanese cars but it is pretty basic for a German car. The build quality is typical German excellence, rock solid. The drive is nice, great for the highway but not the most fun car to take on twisty roads.
My advice, upgrade a few things and this car will be golden forever.
by Remorseful Buyer on Jul 19, 2010 Vehicle: 2003 Volkswagen Golf GL 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl 4A)
I bought this car brand new in 2002. At first, everything was great. Good gas mileage. Sporty little car. Great for zipping around town and did well on road trips. However, it started having all sorts of problems after about 18-24 months, beginning with the "small" and annoying (head lights constantly burning out, display lights inexplicably going off and coming on, airbags needed replacement without ever having been used or the car being in an accident). Then, around 65,000 miles, the check engine light was constantly on. Then, the transmission blew and it needed a new timing belt, air sensor, alternator & more. It has cost me thousands to repair and has become a money pit.
The most affordable Volkswagen gets a few equipment changes for 2003. Probably the biggest of these is the availability of stability control (VW's ESP) on all trim levels. In other news, base GL models now include a CD player, cruise control and power windows and mirrors. GLS models now come with a sunroof and alloy wheels, while seat heaters and the premium Monsoon sound system will be optional across the line. Finally, VW has increased the padding on the side curtain airbag system; the base 2.0-liter four-cylinder now meets ULEV standards; and the standard stereo head unit will get backlighting for the buttons.