2003 Volkswagen Golf Review | Edmunds.com

2003 Volkswagen Golf

Volkswagen Golf Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 1.9 L Inline 4-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 5-speed Manual
  • Horse Power 90 hp @ 3750 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 35/44 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2003 Volkswagen Golf

  • Though pricier than the average economy car, the Golf offers far more amenities, and in TDI form, it's both frugal and fun. Put it on your test drive list.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Long list of standard features, high-quality cabin materials, utility of hatchback design, fuel-efficient TDI engine, fun to drive.

  • Cons

    More expensive than its peers, mediocre performance of base four-cylinder, some controls difficult to use.

  • What's New for 2003

    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.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

  Average Consumer Rating (20 total reviews)  |  Write a Review


Constant costly repairs

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Vehicle: 2003 Volkswagen Golf GLS TDI 4dr Hatchback (1.9L 4cyl Turbodiesel 5M)

Original owner blew motor due to low oil and had a brand new 1.9l engine and turbo charger, decarbed, replaced EGR valve, water pump, timing belt and tensioner at 135,000 kms. At 160,00, replaced glow plug harness. 163,000 kms mass air low circuit replaced. I bought it with 172,000 kms on car and 35,000 on new motor. At 223,000 replaced front struts and mounts and sway bar bushing, 226,000 cleaned airtake manifold and carbon, new timing belt, water pump. 242,000 replaced fan motor for heater. At 302,000 engine light remains on and blowing some oil out somewhere and the alternator pully came off. Both are expensive repairs. Uncomfortable seats, and cheaply built - not worth the repair bills.




Buy one, you'l love it!

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Vehicle: 2003 Volkswagen Golf GLS TDI 4dr Hatchback (1.9L 4cyl Turbodiesel 5M)

This 2003 Golf TDI is without a doubt THE most fun car to drive of all the cars that I've owned. (Actually, this is car #21). The diesel engine has tons of torque and really runs great matched with the manual transmission. The gears are smooth and shift even better than the Hondas I've owned. This TDI has a nice little wheeze when the turbo is heard, but that is only when the windows are open. I love the moon roof and the Monsoon radio- the best stock radio in any vehicle Ive had. I like the visibility, too. The seats are very comfortable. I get a reliable 45 mpg, and I drive 80 mph. The maintenance has been super low and Ive done most of it myself. I would buy another TDI without a doubt.




Vw solid dependability

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Vehicle: 2003 Volkswagen Golf GLS TDI 4dr Hatchback (1.9L 4cyl Turbodiesel 5M)

I have owned my Golf TDI GLS for about 2.5 years and it has been a great car. It's tough, it's fun, it's well built and sturdy, and it is tremendous with fuel mileage. I love everything but the seats. The driver's seat (for me) is not as comfortable as my old Mercedes but, I will find, and pay the expense for, a set of GTI heated leather seats for this car. It's not worth getting rid of the car! I am a taller/big guy and I still fit in this car and it's road handling and performance is magnificent. Buy one of these, you won't regret it! -CR




So glad i bought this

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Vehicle: 2003 Volkswagen Golf GLS TDI 4dr Hatchback (1.9L 4cyl Turbodiesel 5M)

I love, love this car! It travels well, and provides great diesel mileage of course. I have had little problem with it. My only complaint is that it is designed so that a dealership has to do most of the basic maintenance.




Great car

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Vehicle: 2003 Volkswagen Golf GLS TDI 4dr Hatchback (1.9L 4cyl Turbodiesel 5M)

My 2003 Volkswagen Golf is great. It gets excellent gas mileage, about 600 miles per tank of fuel.




This car's been a dream...knock

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Vehicle: 2003 Volkswagen Golf GLS TDI 4dr Hatchback (1.9L 4cyl Turbodiesel 5M)

Stand Trans a must with this engine. ONLY FUN-TO-DRIVE ECONOMY CAR W/ PERSONALITY ON THE MARKET. Chassis so solid, drives like a dream. Great crash test ratings make me feel safer than I would on truck/SUV-strewn roads. Interior easy on the eyes. Seats need better lumbar support, and velour upholstry sucks. As GLS owner, I suggest sticking w/ the GL. GLS options aren't as well-designed as rest of car. Big-picture: 26K problem- free mi in first 12 mos w/ average 45- 47 MPG, and starts down to -55F here in ND has convinced me of the overall value and sound design of this car - esp. that engine!



Full 2003 Volkswagen Golf Review

What's New for 2003

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.

Talk About The 2003 Golf

Gas Mileage

EPA-Rated MPG

  • 35
  • cty
/
  • 44
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs