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.
Fuel efficient turbo diesel engine. 50 mpg on long trips, 45 around town. Comfortable seats for long trips. Extended refueling capacity, about 750 mi per tankful. Great Monsoon factory stereo. Love the moonroof and the hatchback trunk. This German car is perfect for a daily commuter car.
Light bulbs seem to go out more often than an Asian car, but are a LOT easier to replace, usually a two minute job. Be very careful about choosing the right tires for this car. Mileage decrease if you don't. Get a after market engine skid plate- protects your crankcase better than OEM plastic one.
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
I used to install stereos as a teenager and the Monsoon stereo is a great sounding system for factory. The only thing I did was cap the door & dash speakers at 100 Hz. I added a removable amped box of 12"s and I have an awesome thumper with no distortion.
The car's not that pretty or that much fun to drive on a hot summer day compared to a BMW convertible, but it beats everything else as a daily driver/commuter. I've gotten 750+ miles off of a single 12-gallon tank with a manual transmission (62.5 mpg). When driving in the city for the full tank, I still get over 50 mpg. Since the car is a diesel with gobs of torque, you don't have to downshift that often on hills, even when loaded with gear. There is lots of room in the car, enough for three friends, a dog, and camping gear.
The diesel engine is the best, as is how easy it is to maintain the car. The engine bay is cramped, but it's a tiny car which is to be expected. However, it's easier to do the maintenance yourself and save several hundred bucks instead of going to a dealership. The car is a great bargain!
The car could do with a bit more power, but you'd sacrifice fuel economy so it's a good trade. If you want more power, there are a few modifications you can do to it. I prefer a chip modification because you're actually get more power and torque with better fuel economy if done correctly.
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.