Used 2003 Volkswagen GTI Hatchback Consumer Reviews | Edmunds
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2003 Volkswagen GTI Hatchback - Consumer Reviews

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174 Total Reviews

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Glad it is sold
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Don
on

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen GTI Hatchback VR6 2dr Hatchback (2.8L 6cyl 6M)


Review

I owned my GTI VR6 for three years. I was disappointed by the gearbox (the ratios are too close - rev limits too easily), but generally happy with engine/transmission. Stock tires were harsh and gave poor handling. Electronic gadgets mostly disappointing: one touch up/down windows frequently malfunctioned, auto-dimming mirror had ghost image of headlights, climate control hard to shut off, and the rain sensing wipers used the wrong interval in certain conditions. The audio system was much better than in my previous Passat though. The interior materials were of average quality (thin leather, cheasy plastic levers and knobs on seat break easily). The car was nimble with its short wheelbase, but the suspension was harsh and sloppy in manuevers. It rattled like mad.


Best Features

Climate control, except turning it off.


Worst Features

Get rid of the blue dash. Use better leather and vinyl. Wider ratios in transmission. Less aggressive ABS. More padding in dash and console to rattles.


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Reliable and fun to drive
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Scooter
on

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen GTI Hatchback 1.8T 2dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 5M)


Review

I bought my 2003 VW GTI on New Years Eve of 2003 and have no regrets about my decision. The car is solid inside and out. It gets great gas mileage. Tons of standard features that just aren't found in other vehicles. And it is a pleasure to drive every time. Even the dealerships have great customer skills and are eager to help. I am just about to break 20,000 miles and have had just one problem. The check engine light came on. Because temperatures went below 20 degrees, my purge valve was stuck. It was replaced and I have not had a problem since.


Best Features

Quick pick-up, superior passing ability, gas mileage, instrument illumination, loads of standard features, and excellent interior build quality.


Worst Features

Change the cup holder placement.


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Awesome Car!!!!!!!
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By 03gtiturbo
on

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen GTI Hatchback 1.8T 2dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 5M)


Review

When i had to replace my civic hatch, i looked at all the "pocket rockets" out there like the civic si and the nissan se-r spec v. Then i looked at a car that i have always been in love with, the gti. The car had all the options and it drove very smooth, but there was one thing i have dreamed of having forever. TURBO POWER. With traction control on, it spun the tires and the powerband was smooth as silk. The sound of the turbo was great too. It also had plenty of torque and that made it easier to drive than the other cars i drove. There hasn't been a day when i was unhappy with my buy. All i can say is to get the 5spd and the turbo. You won't be sorry.


Best Features

Lots of standard features, comfortable, fast, handles good, doesn't catch cops' eyes but still looks great, interior lighting is amazing, exhaust note sounds great and of course...turbo, turbo, turbo, turbo...


Worst Features

bad cupholder placement, there is a little too much body roll for a performance car, expensive service.


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The Pocket Rocket grows up - sort of....
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Luis Rosario
on

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen GTI Hatchback 1.8T 2dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 5M)


Review

Still a unique car that shows other "hot hatchbacks" how it should be done! A solid combination of premium features, safety, performance, and comfort for its class. Fun to drive, yet it won't beat you up in the process. If you want to move up from the kiddie-car competition to something with more comfort and features, the GTI is the one you want. The base 1.8T motor is tons of fun. Overall, a great little commuter car with German attitude, plus you won't see yourself coming and going like the other boy- racer go-karts out there. Be sure to go with the stick-shift for maximum control. No problems yet - seems like most quality control issues have been taken care of from the 2003 models on.


Best Features

Turbo punch, Audi-quality interior materials with great fit/finish, cool blue/red lighted dash at night, practical overall layout and design, good ride vs. handling compromise ala BMW, decent rear passenger and cargo room for its class. Also gets great gas mileage, though it asks for premium.


Worst Features

Mostly nitpicks: Easier-closing rear hatch with a real grab handle, and that doesn't lock automatically when you close it. Easier access to oil filter for do-it-yourselfers, and a little more bright interior trim would look better(especially with all-black interior). And why no standard foglights?


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Silver Bullet
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Darude1
on

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen GTI Hatchback VR6 2dr Hatchback (2.8L 6cyl 6M)


Review

This is my 4th VW (92 Corrado, 2 Jettas and my GTI). Only problem I've had was the coil Packs, no surprise. Previous owner only replaced 3 of the 6. Car has power whenever you need it. My Corrado (with a couple of mods) could do 140mph and keep pulling.


Best Features

All the air bags, traction control and 17s. 6spd tranny is cool as well.


Worst Features

Cup holder is really not that functional. Better tires and suspension.


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