The VW GTI is an automotive LEGEND worldwide! It's been around, in one form or another, for over 25 years, and has been the sports-hatch bargain of choice for countless drivers seeking affordable performance and style the world over. The 24 valve VR6 is no exception. What an awesome engine! It can be argued that this is one of the BEST GTI's EVER, given the superb quality and engineering evident inside and out. The interior is absolutely impeccable, with fit and finish worthy of an Audi or BMW. The exterior design and overall looks convey German class and performance, especially with the gorgeous 17 inch 'Monte Carlo' rims, which enable the car to perform admirably. A very TIGHT car!
Where do I start? Everything about this car is just awesome. Reliability has been flawless. No problems whatsoever. Best of all, the 24V motor coupled to the 6-speed manual, grabs you from the getgo! Torque is amazing, with strong acceleration and awesome stability for a FWD car. The car is a blast!
The only 'improvement' this GTI could benefit from is a bit of weight reduction. As it stands, 0-60 can be had in a brisk 6.5 seconds, and you really feel the engine's power on the highway when passing. I can't imagine what this car would be like with a bit less weight! Nonetheless, it's still fast!
Good and bad. Smooth power, slick shifting, excellent handling, great ride and Audi-level interior design. Unfortunately, insurance is high, rattles and squeaks intrude on an otherwise library-quiet cabin, electonic gadgets are prone to failure. OnStar inoperative from day one. Buggy alarm/central locking system. Wouldnt start at 5,200 mi, was towed. As this is my fourth VW, Im used to the quirks bad electrical systems, squeaks, leaks (like inch-deep puddles in my 02 and that windows iced up on the INSIDE), stereo replacements, windows that fall into the doors, etc. The only question is: can YOU get used to it? Better make sure you have a good dealer. Otherwise, two words: CIVIC Si!
Amazingly smooth driveline, thrilling performance, boy-racer acceleration without the silly styling, easy to fly under cops' radar, quiet cabin, supportive seats, firm but supple ride quality, Lexus-like refinement, loaded with comfort and convenience features at a reasonable price.
Poor reliability, rattles, squeaks, too many trips to the dealership, too many gadgets that fail at the worst possible time. VW seems to have given up on the Mark IV now. Steep insurance rates, poor gas mileage (less than 22 mpg in my experience). Too much body roll, ZERO traction in even light snow.
After waiting 6 months to get a GTI w/V6 and cloth interior, I am very pleased with my new Volkswagen. This is my first car with stick shift since my Corvair days. My wife and I took a 500 mile trip in a rain storm last weekend. I felt totally in control while driving on wet roads at interstate speeds. The GTI is very steady on the road and has plenty of power for acceleration at any speed. My red GTI really attracts attention and turns heads when this 67 year old guy gets out of his new car.
The power, the paint job and the outstanding handling. Airbags all around you for peace of mind.